THANKS to generous donations and grants, scores of children have been able to enjoy free places at a holiday club offering wonderful experiences. Innovative project Wonderful Things, which started at St Mary’s CE School, Rawtenstall, branched out to cover different locations last year.
To ensure the success of the expansion – which saw hundreds of primary school age children enjoying new experiences aided by Youth Volunteers from high schools, sponsorship opportunities were created. Project Manager Kate Crane, from Rawtenstall, said: “We were fortunate to be awarded Local Member Grants from County Councillors David Foxcroft and Peter Steen which have enabled us to offer four places a day to children who would not have been able to access Wonderful Things. In Chatburn we also received a Local Member Grant which enabled us to offer four free places up to Easter. During May half term, thanks to a donation from Hanson Cement Ribblesdale, we are able to continue offering the free places. In the past, we have had businesses sponsoring ice creams for a week for all of the children who attended during the summer and some facilitators ran their activities at a reduced cost. We are very grateful for all offers of help and as it only costs £17 a day to sponsor a place for a child, we hope there will be more businesses that might want to give something back.”
The days are all themed from Lego to forest, sport to science, aliens to superheroes, news to dance. County Councillor Foxcroft said: “I think what Wonderful Things is doing is fantastic. I went along to see the project and there was a little girl who was able to attend because of the Local Member Grant. Had that money not been there she would have been staying with her grandmother who is fighting cancer and she would have had to stop inside and look after her and watch TV. What was important was that she was able to experience what children should without any cares, worries or fears, just like any other child. That for me sums up what this project does.”
This summer sessions will be held at Newchurch St Nicholas CE Primary School, The Boo in Waterfoot, at Chatburn CE School in the Ribble Valley and in Stockport. To check out and book activity days visit www.wonderfulthings.org.uk or the organisation’s Facebook page. To offer sponsorship or support email firstname.lastname@example.org
Story by Catherine Smyth