Summer is nearly here and families are planning sunny holidays to have fun, rest, relax, be free. But not all. Some families don’t have the opportunity to leave Notting Hill and it’s their children who Summer Sparks helps to have time off.
“We believe all children should have the opportunity to develop new interests and skills like arts and crafts, drama, visits to local museums and also have some overnight trips,” K&C Foundation’s director, Susan Dolton, said this week at the Summer Sparks launch.
Statistics published by the Kensington & Chelsea Social Council show that the second highest level of child poverty in London is found in North Kensington, 75% of local children in poverty are aged under 11 and 43% of local families have gone without a holiday for three consecutive years. A Summer Sparks partner said last year, following an excursion, that some of the children had never seen the sea before. Another had taken 7 – 11 year olds for a walk to Kensington Gardens and many had never been there. One child was 11 and had never been to a cinema. Summer Sparks gives children the chance to try these things and can have a real impact on young lives.
Cllr Timothy Coleridge and chairman of the Foundation said at the launch: “The Kensington and Chelsea motto is ‘What a good thing it is to dwell in unity’ We are launching something really, really good. Some of us totally underestimate what young people have had and 5 -17 year olds should have had these experiences. It will make a profound impact on young children.”
Amongst other local businesses, Harrods is a major contributor to Summer Sparks, and Andy Rathbone, Security Services Manager who led his team’s event to raise funds for Summer Sparks says: “I know the value of summer children’s activities, not only bringing short term laughter but life changing lifeskill that stay with them for the rest of their lives. I had a few chances like this when I was young.” If you would like to contribute you can text KCFS16 £5 to 70070. thekandcfoundation