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Holiday activities & Food programme announced for 2021

Cumbria County Council has been given £1.2 million by the government to spend in 2021 to provide high-quality fun activities over the holidays for school aged children and young people eligible for and receiving benefits-related free school meals.

The programme will run over the Easter, summer and Christmas holidays with the aim being to provide fun physical activities, a nutritious meal and enrichment sessions around cooking, eating well and learning new skills for those young people who prefer a less active holiday.


The Easter holiday offer will be virtual due to Covid-19 restrictions still being in place and will include:

  • A  series of ‘live’ interactive exercise and fitness sessions delivered by Active Cumbria and CandoFM.
  • A range of activities of which include cooking lessons, picnics,  art/craft sessions and lots more, delivered by Our 0-19 Child and Family Support Services (CFSS) from Barnardo’s and Family Action.
  • An online activity programme in the second week of the Easter holiday delivering virtual stories, art & craft sessions provided by the Library service. 

The plan for the summer and Christmas holidays will be to provide face to face sessions in local settings such as schools and Leisure/Community centres; allowing children and young people to choose from a wide range of activities which will include sport, outdoor activities such as climbing and canoeing, and a raft of enrichment sessions followed by a nutritious meal.


Children and their families can find out more about the Easter activities by emailing or can sign up to the activities on the links below:

Easter Exercise and Fitness Offer:

Active Cumbria in partnership with CandoFM have organized a series of ‘LIVE’ exercise and fitness sessions for children and young people from Primary Schools, Secondary Schools, those pupils at risk of being NEET (Not in Education or Employment and Training) and those pupils with a SEND who are entitled to free school meals. To register, participants will need to visit the following link: so that they can access the zoom link to the activity session they wish to attend.

The number of participants for each activity session is limited, so please do register early to avoid any disappointment. 


Barnardo’s Eden – ‘Families Together’ Time

Children and their families will be encouraged to look out for information which will be shared by schools and on our Facebook page.

In Eden, families can register their interest by using any of the following and then complete the booking instructions once confirmed to enable resources to be delivered and / or collected:

Telephone: 01768 899901


Family Action – Families, Food and Fun (HAF-DfE)

Throughout the Easter holidays children, young people and their families will be invited to get involved with a wide range of fun activities - arts and crafts, nature detectives, fun food recipes, and much more. Find out more on our 0-19 district Facebook pages:

Family Learning Courses February 2021




Children's Mental Health Week 2021


Nationally, Children’s Mental Health Week is taking place on 1-7 February 2021. This year's theme is ‘Express Yourself’.

In Cumbria, we are asking children, young people and others to share with us the ways they express feelings, and thoughts about what has helped them cope or what they have learned in this time from the COVID pandemic or maybe what they wished they had known at the start.  There are a number of ways to get involved:

  • Draw a picture
  • Write a poem
  • Produce a short piece of writing (200 – 400 words)
  • Make music, write a song (audio only)
  • Send us a photo of an object that helped you cope with ups and downs (something you made; your goldfish; houseplant; favourite book/game)

Please send your contributions in digital format to by the end of Thursday 4th February. All entries received will be entered into a prize draw

What else is happening?

MyTime will also be hosting free Zoom information sessions for parents and carers. The “Supporting your child's mental health through the pandemic” sessions will provide informal practical advice and ideas that can help you to support the mental health of you and your child through the pandemic. Information on dates and how to book is here

Kooth will be hosting a parent and carer session on Tuesday 2 February 2021, 12-1pm. Further information available here

E-School Nurses are running twice weekly online health support and advice for parents, carers and professionals, supporting children and young people aged 5-19 years old. More information is available here

We will also be publishing a 5-minute briefing each day covering themes such as:

  • How to get support
  • Top tips
  • Family mental health
  • Music and wellbeing
  • Words and feelings
  • Helping yourself and helping others

You can help us to support Children’s Mental Health week by promoting the activities taking place over the week. You can also share our briefings with colleagues and retweet us on Twitter, @CumbriaSCP using the hashtag #childrensmentalhealthweek.

If your organisation is is running an event to mark the week, let us know and we will share these in our briefings over the course of the week, please email

Autumn 2020 Parent courses in Carlisle

01228 558724