Wiltshire performing arts company supports families on low income this summer

By Nick Batten on 24 May, 2022

Swindon-based Revolution Performing Arts (RPA) – one of the South West’s leading performing arts companies for children and young people – has been supporting the Holiday Activity and Food Programme (HAF) launched last year by celebrity footballer, Marcus Rashford MBE. 

Founder Fi Da Silva Adams has found the scheme so successful that her team is offering support to families in hardship this summer too. 

The Government’s £220 million HAF programme has been available to councils across the country to run the programmes locally through various holiday clubs. Thousands of young people have already benefited and those clubs must commit to provide nutritious food as well as activities like arts and crafts, sport and music to the children who would normally get free school meals during term time. RPA is the only performing arts company in Swindon offering the programme.

Fi said, “We piloted this programme for one week over the Christmas holidays last year. It was so successful that we ran it again for a week over Easter. The take-up was incredible – we welcomed over 70 young girls and boys who came to enjoy fun performing arts activities and a free hot meal. Without this support they may not have had this opportunity.”

The activities offered in the HAF programme at RPA were singing, dancing, acting, circus and physical theatre workshops, arts & crafts, loom bands, den building, Nerf guns and outdoor activities. 

“School holidays can be a particularly difficult time for some families due to increased food and childcare costs and reduced incomes,” explained Fi. “It can mean that families struggle to provide food and activities for children. We are thrilled to be a part of this important Government initiative.”

RPA plans to offer the HAF programme again for four weeks in August. The same activities will be available plus some extra outdoor activities to enjoy being with nature. HAF is available for children who receive benefits-related free school meals. 

Fi added, “With Covid19 having affected so many young people’s mental health, our young boys and girls need to feel great now, so I am doing all I can.”

The HAF Programme is held at The Croft Primary School in Swindon and at Even Swindon Community Centre. All the RPA leaders have enhanced DBS police checks and have received full safeguarding and first aid training.

To register an interest in booking, please contact RPA at: https://revolutionpa.co.uk or email office@revolutionpa.co.uk.

Pictured above: RPA leader and pastoral support worker Patricia Harewood with young participant Favour Nyamekye-Antwi