The school holidays have started. Over the summer The Felix Project will deliver free food to 63 holiday programmes across London.
Holiday programmes provide open spaces for children and families to play, learn new skills and share meals. For families facing the challenge of finding money to cater another meal while children are off school for six weeks, they can make the difference between having healthy food to eat and skipping meals.
Addressing holiday hunger
The Felix Project delivers nutritious food that suppliers can’t sell to holiday programmes for free. The food includes a high proportion of fresh fruit and vegetables. The activities and healthy meals the holiday programmes provide help well-being and social inclusion and go some way to address the hunger faced by many families on low incomes during the school holidays.
Food and play at adventure playgrounds
Haringey Play Association is an adventure playground in North London receiving food from The Felix Project. From its base at Somerford Grove Community Project, it provides a range of free services to the local community and beyond. Tam, who helps run Haringey Play says, “Food and play here at the adventure playground means we can offer a safe place to come. People make relationships and they get to know each other through food.”
“We would see a lot more hungry children if food deliveries from Felix stopped. We have a budget to feed our children which is just enough for them but doesn’t include the parents. Felix has enabled us to feed our children every day we open, and while they play it’s also a place for the wider community to relax and eat. Some are too proud to go to a food bank, but they are happy to take away bags of nourishing food.” Read the full case study.
More food from The Felix Project to more holiday programmes
This summer, The Felix Project will deliver food to 63 holiday programmes. During term time, we deliver food to primary schools as part of our Schools Programme. When the schools are closed, we aim to make sure all the food that would be going to schools goes to organisations providing activities for children to help meet their ongoing need for good nutritious food. To identify holiday programmes who would benefit from food deliveries, The Felix Project have been liaising with local councils, Sustain and other organisations such the Mayor’s Fund for London’s Kitchen Social programme.
The Felix Project’s Schools Programme, which was funded from generous donations to the Evening Standard’s Christmas Appeal in 2017, has been growing steadily and will be delivering to 120 schools by the end of this year. This means our support for holiday programmes will increase in the future.
Children have access to healthy snacks and to experiment with cooking
Islington Play Association’s Timbuktu Adventure Playground has been receiving food deliveries from The Felix Projectus since last summer. Francesca, Play and Learning Manager at Timbuktu says, “The free food has brought more children into the playground. The opportunity to cook on a regular basis and to experiment with cooking and be creative making something from nothing has inspired them.
“The project has a massive impact on the kids, they can always access healthy snacks, it keeps them safe and off the streets, and then there’s the social impact and the sense of community that the food has brought. If we didn’t have free food delivered, money that would have to be spent on food would be taken out of the budget for paints, arts and crafts and sports equip that are essential elements of play.”
Volunteering for The Felix Project is rewarding. It's flexible and it's simple to get involved
The Felix Project’s invaluable work delivering free food to holiday programmes wouldn’t happen without the commitment and passion of our incredible volunteers. As the number of holiday programmes, primary schools and charities we deliver to continues to grow, there will be a greater need for more volunteers to help us.
If you have a few hours to spare for a morning, afternoon or evening, we’d love to hear from you! Volunteering as a driver, co-driver, warehouse assistant, walker or cyclist to collect, sort and deliver food is fun, rewarding, flexible - and it’s simple to get involved.