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Cheshire East Council is to roll out its holiday activity fund for vulnerable children this summer, the authority says.

It follows the council’s roll-out of the government’s support package for vulnerable children and families placed at risk during the Covid pandemic.

The council says it reached 9,500 vulnerable young people between December and April, ensuring they received supplies of food and that household bills were paid.

Cheshire East Council received £1.18m from central government and sent out more than 40,000 food vouchers and more than 1,500 utility vouchers to help with household bills.

As many as 122 households benefited from a partnership involving schools, colleges, the NHS, council services and third sector organisations to identify families in need.

Cllr Kathryn Flavell, Cheshire East Council’s chair of children and families, said: “Many residents who were worried about paying bills or being unable to put food on the table, expressed their relief at knowing that we, together with other support organisations and charities, were around to help, offering clear guidance in how to make applications for support packages.”

The council says activity programmes this summer will target children who receive free school meals.

The council’s Easter programme funded 18 schemes in more than 35 locations and saw more than 460 children joining holiday activity clubs.

Children took part in baking sessions, science experiments, gardening, dance, signing, games, drama, physical exercise, and sports.

Cllr Flavell added: “I want to thank the many organisations who dedicate their time during the summer months to ensure that these children are given something positive to do during their time off school and are well looked after.

“This is funded by the Department for Education – but it is our community groups who make it happen and put a smile on the faces of so many children in our borough.”

Any organisations wishing to enquire about getting involved should email [email protected]

Families interested in holiday activity clubs can visit www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/schools/holiday-activity-fund.aspx

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