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Hundreds of youngsters enjoyed access to free holiday camps and food during the Easter break in locations across Oxfordshire via Ignite Sport in partnership with Oxfordshire County Council.
Based in Marston, Ignite Sport’s team of coaches delivered 15,000 hours of activities to over 500 children aged 4-16 who qualified to enrol onto the Government-funded Holiday Activity Fund (HAF) programme.
The programme engages and inspires children through sport and other activities while providing them with a healthy and balanced meal during school holidays. HAF has been championed by Manchester United and England footballer Marcus Rashford, whose efforts are helping to tackle poverty through the power of sport.
Sessions were delivered by Ignite’s team of experienced and qualified coaches while the Oxford Food Company provided every participant with a tasty and balanced meal.
Jamie Doody, Ignite Sport’s Business Support Officer, said: “Providing children with fun, engaging and inspiring holiday camps has been at the heart of our work for over 20 years.
“We’re committed to making our camps and sports activities fun and inclusive to everyone and our Easter, Summer and Christmas sessions are always a real hit with participants.
“It’s why we’re proud to work in partnership with Oxfordshire County Council to fulfil a nationwide ambition to provide every child with the opportunity to be active during the Easter break.
“Funded lunches and healthy snacks, in our case, provided by the Oxford Food Company, contributes to easing the financial strain families might face during school holidays.”
Ignite’s HAF programmes were delivered at Oxford City FC’s Velocity Stadium and in sites across Witney, Didcot and Bicester.
The fun, inclusive activities focused on sport and art promoted the development of essential life skills including teamwork, communication and problem-solving.
“It’s great news that the Government has committed funding to HAF for another three years,” said Jamie. “We know how valuable it is to families across Oxfordshire.
“Children who come from disadvantaged households are sometimes less likely to receive access to organised out of school activities creating a holiday experience gap.
“Providing access to our holiday camps hopefully goes some way to relieving this. We also hope to reduce the burden placed on parents for childcare costs across school holidays.”
Schools looking to offer places to pupils can contact Ignite Sport via firstname.lastname@example.org or call 03003 030890 for further information.