Life Leisure brings half term joy to Stockport kids
Life Leisure’s R Time project was developed to support Stockport’s most vulnerable youngsters by helping to reduce anti-social behaviour, improve mental and physical well-being and to combat holiday hunger.
During half term the project welcomed more than 140 children to 32 free activity sessions, providing 450 free lunches. This followed on from a fantastic summer programme which provided more than 250 hours of activity, and 623 food parcels and activity packs throughout the holidays.
Sasha Moore, who coordinates the project on behalf of Life Leisure, said: “R Time has been set up to ensure that Stockport’s most vulnerable children are given access to activities and food during school breaks and in the evenings.
“2020 has been hugely challenging but this our service has never been more important, with more and more children affected by challenges at home, school and the ongoing pandemic.
“Our job is to provide them with a safe place where they can have fun, eat well, and have their voices heard. October half term has been as busy as ever, with lots of happy faces and full tummies!”
R Time sessions are funded by the Big Lottery Fund and coordnanted by Life Leisure with the support of several partners such as Stockport Homes, Stockport Youth Justice and Targeted Youth Support services, GM Police (Stockport) and Stockport Council.
As well as providing youngsters and their families with food and activity packages, the service also provided online cookery lessons during lockdown, where children and their families could learn how to cook the produce in their packages through videos on facebook.
Sasha, who has been coordinating the project since 2018 (previously ran a similar scheme called with Street Games called Fit and Fed for 3 years and we were one of the first in the country as we were initially a pilot project – think Ian should have mentioned this – so we have been doing such projects for 5 years) said: “Thousands of Stockport children face poverty and hunger when they are not in school.
“Fortunately the lockdown rules had been lifted to enable us to run sessions throughout the summer, we just had to replace close contact sports like football with athletics, skipping, boot camps, frisbee’s, hula hooping, hide and seek.
She added: “As well as ongoing financial support from the Big Lottery Fund, we’ve also received a fantastic amount of support locally, with volunteers packing up food parcels and helping with activity packs for the kids attending the sessions. The online cookery lessons were a huge hit with almost 3,000 meals made! ”
R Time also deliveres 11 outreach evening sessions a week during term time in Brinnington, Adswood, Bridgehall, Heaton Norris, Lancashire Hill, Reddish, Offerton and Romiley.
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