As the summer holidays end & children go back to school we want to say a huge thank you to all the churches, schools and community groups that supported children and families in 20 communities across Middlesbrough and Redcar & Cleveland. It has been a great privilege to visit all the Feast of Fun projects and see hundreds of children enjoying a healthy meal and having lots of fun! 

Central to the programme is imagination and a sense of adventure: when children aren’t able to go away during the holidays it can be hard to return to school without fun tales to share, but each location has a particular theme with accompanying activities to dive in to. Children have been enjoying adventures on the high seas with lots of pirate themed clubs, in North Ormesby they have been taking off with ‘Trinity Airlines’ for an around the world adventure, and in Grangetown children loved their space adventures as trainee astronauts.

Feast of Fun is a partnership of local churches, community groups and schools that offer a range of holiday activities, including healthy snacks and lunches.  It is a grass–roots response to offer support for the many families who struggle during the summer holidays; with the children at home 24/7 and no free school meals, the weekly budget has to stretch further for food and there is little left for activities and treats.

Starting four years ago, each year the project grows and enjoys the support of new partners.  This year we were especially delighted to be working with the North York Moors Centre taking families on trips to Danby to enjoy a range of outdoor activities. Over 500 children & their parents enjoyed fantastic days out in the great outdoors learning survival skills, going on mini-best safaris and much more.

Feast of Fun couldn’t happen without the dedication and hard work of over 250 volunteers.  This year we welcomed a whole new generation of volunteers, older people through Faithfully Ageing Better who shared their time, skills and talents with the children and families to create a "Feast of Fun across the Generations."  It has been wonderful to see how much the children and older volunteers have enjoyed spending time together, one volunteer said “I think I’m getting more out of this than the children are!”

We are pleased for the second year running to be receiving support from Brakes Bros Food Service Company, offering sponsorship to help with the cost of food and activities, through the Meals & More programme. Quorn Foods have also provided fantastic support with healthy food activities and providing Quorn Burgers and Sausages so groups can enjoy healthy family BBQ’s.

Starting in 2014, with just 6 churches, the project has grown each year and is a great example of communities coming together to support families who find the summer holidays a real challenge.  We are delighted that the Feast of Fun story has been shared in local and national media and also created into a short film. We hope you enjoy watching the Feast of Fun Film.