Last Updated: Wednesday, January 06, 2021

Youth, Family and Community Learning Service, South Lanarkshire

What is this?

During the summer holiday period, Youth, Family and Community Learning Service delivered the emergency childcare provision across South Lanarkshire.

Who is this for?

For all with an interest in Scottish education.

What we did:

During the summer holiday period, Youth, Family and Community Learning Service delivered the emergency childcare provision across South Lanarkshire. 423 children aged between 3-13 years attended, benefiting from a full range of activities delivered through a youth work approach.

In order to meet the needs of a wide age range of children in each location, care was taken to ensure that activities were age and ability appropriate to promote participant engagement.

Activities and themes were explored and agreed with participants at the beginning of the programme and included:

  • arts and crafts
  • films
  • physical activities
  • fitness fun sessions
  • planting sunflower seeds and growing plants
  • treasure hunts
  • stop frame animation
  • old school games (skipping, hula hoops etc.)
  • group games
  • non bake baking
  • Rainforest Forest school
  • Science and Space
  • Harry Potter
  • Superheroes
  • STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics)

The Youth Scotland Hi5 award and Dynamic Youth Award was offered to participants aged 5 and above that attended Summer Sessions.

Participants across all of the provisions engaged in the creation of a keepsake DVD recording of their summer sessions experience as well as designing their own t-shirt which captured their experiences and memories of ‘Summer Sessions life’.

Who we involved:

Ten locations identified to host the provision and staff from a range of disciplines: Youth, Family and Community Learning, Early Years and Childcare, Facilities, SLC Aspire Employability and school based non- teaching. Awards aware training was delivered by Youth Scotland to maximise the ability of participation in awards.

The difference it made:

Positive feedback from parents, carers and children has ranged from improvements in speech, language skills and behaviour, to enjoyment and scope of activities on offer.

388 Hi5 Awards were achieved with 23,782 hours being recorded. Four Dynamic Youth Awards were achieved with 187 hours recorded.

“He has made more progress with you guys than he has since around Christmas time. Language, eye contact, negotiating skills, balance, less meltdowns, calmer at home. Has learned to walk away from difficult situations more rather than hit out as much” (adult).

“I just wanted to take the opportunity to say thank you to all staff involved with any aspect of the emergency care provision, without it we would have found it incredibly difficult to attend our places of work. The children have loved their time in the hub and it provided a much needed distraction and reassurance for them in these unsettling times. I have found the whole process very easy to access from start to finish which is quite an achievement given that the world we knew changed almost overnight! (adult).

“I enjoyed the games room, gym hall and going outside when it wasn’t raining” (child).

“I want to stay till 5!” (child).

What we will do differently in the future:

The opportunity to bring different disciplines together through a Youth Work delivery model has presented continuous personal development growth, skill progression, improved partnership working and continuity in work practice during the challenges presented during Covid-19 pandemic lockdown measures. Indeed, non-CLD staff have expressed a wish to engage with Youth, Family and Community Learning Services further in addition to registering an interest to participate in future summer holiday provision.

Staff working together, who in many cases had never met each other, under the CLD approach of youth work, flourished and rose up to meet the challenges placed on communities and families. This level of commitment meant that children attending were provided with a safe, nurturing and engaging environment during what would normally be their summer - playing with friends and families, with all the freedoms that people would expect.

In replicating this model of delivery in the future we have identified the need to broaden the availability of the Awards Aware training as not everyone was able to participate. Volunteering is another area of development that will be explored further, as this year allowed us to consider young people helping younger children to participate in the provision – a good practice model.