“Can I just say a big thank you for all your support over this week with Alex, and how you helped him with his anxiety with the camp and the way you run it, everyone seemed to go above and beyond. He has had a really good time especially with Joe (sports coach) and really wants to come back again to the next one . I cannot fault you all you do, amazing work keeping the kids entertained and fit thank you so much”
– Parent of Alex
Charlton Athletic Community Trust (CACT) delivered an Easter Camp programme for 270 young people across three schools apiece in the London Borough of Bexley and the Royal Borough of Greenwich, including some of the most disadvantaged children.
After schools re-opened in March following months of lockdown restrictions, CACT opened their doors to week-long camps during the Easter holidays to support young people and families in both boroughs.
The tertiary programme which developed from the first Summer Camp in 2020, the Easter Camp followed the same structure covering active learning, youth club/creative arts and physical activities.
In addition to the activities, young people were able to get a healthy breakfast and hot meal every day. Keeping safety as a priority in line with government guidelines, young people were able to work in small bubbles and still socialise safely.
CACT caught up with two young people from the programme about experiences and challenges they faced during the lockdown.
Easter Camp attendee Qiyyama (11) said “In the lockdown, we can’t see our families like we could, so the Easter Camp is just a great way to socialise and be out of the house.”
Whilst Marvin (11) said “Easter Camp makes me feel really happy because you get to do something every day.”
The first week of the Easter Camp was funded by the London Borough of Bexley. Kevin Taylor, a spokesman for its Strategic Education Partnership, said:
“This funding has allowed us to provide much-needed support, activities and healthy food for our families who have and continue to face and overcome difficulties that have arisen during this pandemic. It was a pleasure to visit the scheme at Peareswood School run by CACT and witness, first hand, just what a difference these schemes make.
“The scheme was well run and the young pupils some of who I was able to speak to were thoroughly enjoying their time and more importantly benefitting from their attendance.”
Royal Greenwich Councillor Matthew Morrow who visited one of the Greenwich Easter Camp locations Woolwich Polytechnic school said:
“After everything families have been through in lockdown it was a pleasure to see young people in Greenwich having some fun!”
“The Easter Camp provided crafting, food and sports; they were loving kwik cricket, and the children in the conflict resolution class gave me great advice about handling a difficult situation.”
“Charlton Athletic Community Trust works across our whole Borough, supporting children and young people to enjoy themselves and feel valued. Every child needs a community around them, never more so than when things are difficult at home.”
CACT’s Director of Youth, Health and Inclusion Charlie Macdonald said
“CACT is proud to work in partnership with Greenwich and Bexley Council to deliver holiday camps for young people, it is great to see young people having the chance to socialise, make new friends and challenge themselves in a variety of activities.
“We have received great feedback from the young people and their parents and I would especially like to thank the schools that have supported us by allowing us to use their facilities”
CACT would like to thank local authority, venues, organisations and staff for coming together to help make this a great experience.
Special thanks to:
- London Borough of Bexley
- Royal Borough of Greenwich
- Peareswood Primary School
- Northumberland Heath Primary School
- Willow Bank Primary School
- Woolwich Polytechnic Secondary School
- Eltham Hill Secondary School
- The John Roan Secondary School
- Rixos Restaurant
- Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL)