Find out what support is available for families during school holidays

The stockroom at the St Neots Foodbank. 

The stockroom at the St Neots Foodbank. - Credit: ST NEOTS FOODBANK

With the school holidays fast approaching and the country facing a cost of living crisis, some families will struggle to support their children this summer.

The Hunts Post has spoken to some of the food banks in Huntingdonshire, and also to Cambridgeshire County Council (CCC) to see what provisions are in place to ensure that families receive proper support and are aware of what is available to them.

Cambridgeshire County Council 

CCC announced on July 14 that support would be available to vulnerable families during the summer holidays and that places were still available this summer on the Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) programme.

The HAF programme offers fun experiences with friends and a nutritious meal for primary and secondary school children for families receiving income-related free school meals.

CCC also recognises that families not eligible for free school meals might still be struggling financially and therefore is funding free access to those affected.

To find out more and see if you are eligible for support, visit www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/council/communities-localism/support-with-the-cost-of-living/holiday-activities-and-food-programme.

Godmanchester Foodbank

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Godmanchester Foodbank, which is run by the Trussell Trust, is working in conjunction with local schools to provide families with food supplies.

Families normally in receipt of free school meals will be provided hampers by the food bank to get them through the summer.

A 'Lunch in Bag' scheme is being relaunched for summer, where for fives weeks, local schools will nominate families to be part of the scheme and receive food.

The foodbank is also working with the charity Huntingdon Community Action Project (HCAP), referring families and children to HCAP.

HCAP run 'Snack Shack', which hosts activities to improve well-being and help with mental health support.

St Neots Foodbank

St Neots foodbank have noticed an increase in families coming to the foodbank and has recently been feeding 200 to 250 people a month for six days for each person.

Project manager Adrienne Dunn said: "We are continuing to see a rollercoaster of demand, which does seem to be on an upward trajectory."

The foodbank have been unable to give out summer hampers they have done in the past but does have a voucher scheme with Waitrose for those who use the foodbank to spend on fresh fruit, vegetables and eggs in the store.

Adrienne added: "We have access to a number of other agencies, such as Acts 435, and funds to give those who come to the foodbank additional support for much-needed items and services such as energy."

If you are a volunteer, or an organisation, helping to provide support for families during the school holidays, please contact Alexander.Gilham@archant.co.uk