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Fun fuelled summer holidays at The Academy

We can't quite believe that the school holidays have whizzed by so fast. Find out more about what we got up to .....

Thanks to generous support from Thorntons Property Services up to 40 young people a day attended Fun Fuelled Club this summer. The club aims to provide opportunities for children to enjoy fun activities and spend time with friends and youth workers. The club ran over the 6 weeks of the summer holidays. In addition to the usual youth club classics (playing pool, football, baking, arts & crafts and treasure hunts) the kids got a healthy hot lunch every day.

Peter Ryder, Managing Director of Thorntons Property Services, said: “The Spartans summer Fun Fuelled Club has been a great success this year and we’re proud to have shown our support for the initiative. It’s clear the club has great benefits for all who attend and we’re delighted to have played a small part in its success.”

Many of the kids attended all 30 sessions, and the food is always the main aspect the children enjoy. This year City of Edinburgh Council provided us with meals for the club - a big thank you to them for their support.  It’s not just the eating, it’s the social side of sitting down and talking about things, having a laugh and bantering with the youth workers. With nearly 1000 lunches served up it’s been a huge success. 

Of course it’s more than just the food, it's daily interactions with our youth workers that can make a difference. 

*Kelly is 9 years old and she tells us: “When I get angry I kick off but I don’t get in trouble here. You all talk to me to find out what’s wrong”.

*David is 11 years old and has been coming to Spartans MC FooTEA Club for over a year has enjoyed his summer:

“I’ve had lots of fun and because there’s so many people every day there’s always someone to play with. I’ve only missed one day, the first one and I’ve made new friends. In fact I think I only knew one other person before I came here but I’ve made pals with people from other schools too. Mostly I like the football, but the food has been good too. My favourite was the chicken and sausages. I liked going to the park. I’ve never been to that one but I’ll see if my mum will take me and my brothers I want to show them the challenges we did with the monkey bars and the tyres”.

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One of the real successes is the mix within the group. There are children from all over North Edinburgh, from most of the local primary schools and from all different ethnic backgrounds too.  A key aspect of the club is that it is supported by a fantastic group of young volunteers, our Academy Ambassadors. Every one of them has been through the ‘pathway’, from being a participant and on to volunteering. As one of the Ambassadors says: “I helped with the football and playing games. But I also helped serve the food. It’s important to do this club because some parents cannae provide lunches over summer. Like some of my pals' parents. Here all the kids eat lunch together. It’s a great way for them to make new friends and go on trips to places they might not normally go to. I’ve enjoyed getting to know the young people I didn’t know before this club. They’re really nice”.

We have also been lucky to be supported by Nigel, through the People Know How charity and he’s been a key member of the team. We also had two fantastic volunteers from Fettes College, Imogen & Vanessa, who gave up a week of their school holidays to lend a hand. The children liked the girls so much that they painted them a canvass each, to say thank you. However, for many of the children who attend our Fun Fuelled Club and their families, summer is a stressful time. The challenge of funding additional meals and activities is difficult, particularly for working families on low incomes or those on benefits.  

We are grateful to everyone who has supported the Fun Fuelled Club and contributed to a great summer for the participants. 

If you'd like to get involved in any of our clubs or programmes at The Academy or know someone who may be interested, find out more here.