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Published 10 September 2019

Thousands of pupils benefited from summer holiday camps which offered fun activities, learning opportunities and included a free lunch.

The Council invested £100k to help support new and existing groups provide a range of fun classes in West Dunbartonshire for P1 through to S1 during the school holidays.  The popular events were attended by 8094 children, including 300 places for children with additional support needs and 843 adults.  

Figures show 33% of children in West Dunbartonshire live in poverty and 27% of pupils receive free school meals.  In addition the number of families using foodbanks over the summer increased from 576 last year to 775.  

Councillor Karen Conaghan, Convener of Educational Services said: “I visited many camps over the summer and it was great to see families having fun at the classes. I would like to thank everyone involved in arranging the programme which offered increased learning opportunities and fun activities at no cost to parents. The summer holidays can be a challenging time for parents and the summer camps offered young people the opportunity to learn, spend time with their friends and get a free lunch. The uptake of places was very good which shows how popular these activities are to the youngsters and their families.”

Councillor Ian Dickson, Vice Convener of Educational Services, added: “It’s very encouraging to see how popular these classes have been and the great feedback from pupils, families and volunteers.   On the back of the successful summer camps, we plan to engage with more providers to increase the activities on offer to ensure our young people benefit from a range of fun and engaging programmes that suit the needs of our young people and their families.”

The courses were delivered in areas highlighted as having higher levels of deprivation and have been funded by the Council as well as the Pupil Equity Fund and the Scottish Attainment Challenge. The £30,000 leftover from this year’s Summer Camp fund will be used to provide activities during October week and during the Christmas holidays.