Specialist charity Safe and Sound has secured funding from the government’s expanded Holiday Activities and Food programme (HAF) to run a four-week programme for young people and families whose lives have been affected by child exploitation.
Thanks to HAF funding administered locally by Community Action, around 40 young people and 10 families will join a wide range of activities such as dance, boxing, table tennis, family cooking and youth club activities over the six week holidays.
A key part of the programme will be to ensure the young people, who are from some of the most deprived areas in the inner city, will receive a nutritious meal which will be provided by the Padley Group.
The summer activities will run alongside the one to one and group support that Safe and Sound’s specialist team currently provides for 99 children and young people who are victims of or at risk of child exploitation. This includes online grooming, sexual exploitation, County Lines, trafficking, modern slavery and radicalisation.
The charity is also supporting 22 families whose lives have been impacted by exploitation.
Safe and Sound chief executive Tracy Harrison explained: “The summer programme is a key part of our primary function which is to reduce risks and to keep children, young people, families and vulnerable adults safe.
“The focus will therefore be on building their confidence, resilience and overall wellbeing- whilst having fun.
“We are delighted to have this additional funding so that we can provide nutritious meals and healthy eating workshops through a partnership with the Padley Group.
“Most of the young people and families who we work with are from some of the most deprived areas in the city which increases their vulnerability to exploitation so ensuring they have a decent meal during the holidays is an important aspect of the programme.
“And involving the young people’s siblings and parents will help them come together, have fun and overcome the impact that exploitation has had on their family unit.”
For more information about the work of Safe and Sound and ways to support the charity’s ongoing Butterfly Appeal, please visit https://www.safeandsoundgroup.org.uk/