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News from The Boathouse Youth

Fang-tastic Halloween Holidays 🎃

More than 360 foolish mortals spent their half-term with friends at our creepily cool holiday activity clubs with an invitation to eat, play, learn and be scary! From scare-mazes at Apple Jacks Farm and the Creepy Crawly Roadshow at our school-based clubs, to carving out almost 400 pumpkins and creating costumes with our inclusive Pathway Programme – it’s certainly been an experience that our youngsters won’t forget in a hurry.

364 children and young people participated during the October half-term.

The BHY is a key partner in the delivery of Blackpool Council’s Holiday Activity & Food (HAF) Programme always striving to provide around 350 places per day to support children and their families with the challenges that often arise during school holidays. During the current cost-of-living crisis we hope its a comfort to families knowing that we can support keeping their children warm and fed for periods of the day to ease the pressure.

Pumpkin carving provides a great opportunity for children to practice those fine motor skills whilst drawing templates on an uneven surface and using a serrated blade to carve out their designs. It’s also great messy fun! Every single child was able to take home a completed jack-o-lantern to illuminate outside their homes over the festivities.

Everybody knows that Halloween wouldn’t be scary without lots of creepy-critters to set the scene. In true ‘I’m a Celebrity’ style children of all ages and abilities were taken way out of their comfort zones and encouraged to hold the slimiest, slitheriest and slipperiest beasts. Don’t worry though, nobody was required to eat them!

When a child joins with other children in these kind of experiences they are actively experimenting with different emotional and social roles which helps with the development of feelings and building self-esteem. In simple terms, it’s character building, which prepares them for the next step of their development. It’s all part of The BHY journey.

Another part of The BHY journey is us facilitating opportunities that our youngsters otherwise might not get. Monday night saw two of our minibuses rolled-out and heading up the M6 towards Applejack’s Farm in Cheshire for a night of screamingly good scary for 30 members of our teenage cohort, which they’d specifically requested as part of their holiday activities. Kayleigh Smith, Universal Programme Manager, who led the trip said “Yep, even the cool kids were petrified! The ‘shout of the night’ from a young person was “No way, Kayleigh, I’m not being chased by a pig with a chainsaw. It’s not happening!!””.