Brading Community Partnership's resilient delivery of HAF

Brading Community Partnership (BCP) faced unprecedented challenges in 2023 while delivering their HAF programme. Despite grappling with cost-of-living increases and engagement obstacles, the organisation showcased resilience and adaptability by employing in-house resources and local volunteers. This case study explores how BCP successfully navigated these challenges to provide a memorable and impactful summer for children and families

Dec 4 2023

The HAF programme, a crucial initiative aimed at supporting families during school holidays, encountered hurdles such as difficulties in securing partnerships with businesses and organisations. Local supermarket community champions, traditionally strong supporters, were unable to contribute due to overwhelming local demand and budget constraints. Undeterred by these setbacks, BCP chose to rely on local private volunteers and in-house resources to ensure program continuity.

In the face of adversities, BCP reported a successful summer, featuring diverse activities such as drama classes, crafting, and nature-focused experiences, alongside traditional sports. Despite high attendance, organisers observed challenges in engaging secondary school-aged children, often more interested in their mobile phones than the activities provided. Additionally, a significant number, especially from single-parent households, arrived alone and without breakfast, posing further engagement difficulties.

BCP demonstrated a commitment to holistic support by supplying information packs to participating families, detailing local services for personal issues, bill management, access to second-hand school clothes, and food. Despite proactive offers of help in making appointments, families mainly wanted to just talk about the pressures they faced and the challenges their children presented at home.

Feedback from families revealed a positive impact, with 379 separate complimentary responses recorded. Testimonials emphasized the relief provided by the program in offering planned activities, meals, and financial help. Families appreciated the inclusive environment for children with ADHD, the opportunity to create memories, and the alleviation of financial pressure during the summer.

Looking ahead, BCP organizers identified areas for improvement, including the provision of free toiletries, toothbrushes, lice treatments, and sanitary products. The organization aims to enhance information dissemination on accessing household support, with a focus on bill payment, meeting transport costs, and addressing mental health issues, particularly adult depression.

Brading Community Partnership's ability to navigate challenges and deliver a successful HAF programme in 2023 reflects their dedication to community well-being. By using local resources and volunteers, the organization not only provided essential services but also fostered a positive and inclusive environment. As BCP plans for the future, their commitment to addressing evolving community needs positions them as a resilient and adaptive force in community development.