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300 hot meals served to children in Dudley

February Half Term 2020 saw the launch of the first Revive Holiday Club in Dudley. The programme, which was featured on stage at Together 2020 on 4th January, is a collaborative initiative of Love Dudley, who are facilitating local churches to work together in 2020/21 to provide six Holiday Clubs for children from some of the poorest parts of the borough, in an attempt to tackle the issue of holiday hunger.

 

Three Revive Holiday Clubs will run during 2020, with the intention of providing 3 days of fun-filled activities, games and most importantly, a nutritious hot meal for every child that attends. Children in receipt of the Pupil Premium at their school, which entitles them to a free school meal, will be able to attend the Revive Holiday Clubs completely free of charge.

 

The first club took place from 19th-21st February 2020 at Revival Fires Church in the centre of Dudley and was an incredible success. 127 children took part and a total of 300 hot meals were served to children over the 3 days, who predominantly came from primary schools across central Dudley.

Organiser, Lisa Parkes, was amazed at the response. “We couldn’t believe how many families were booking in. The majority of those who came were from local primary schools, many of whom have no church background whatsoever. It was a true honour, not only to feed them a delicious hot meal courtesy of our partners at CHADD, but to engage these children in conversations about faith and life.”

 

The holiday club followed the theme Disney’s The Lion King, with parallels being drawn between the good father ‘Mufasa’ in the film and to the goodness of God the Father. Children were engaged in dance routines, craft activities as well as puppet shows and presentations from children’s evangelist Paul Willmott and his lion puppet Kato.

 

Paul was deeply moved by the response of the children there. “The whole week was amazing and I was personally so blessed to see almost 50 children respond to the gospel message for the first time.”

Revive Holiday Clubs are a fantastic example of the collaborative impact churches can have when they work together. Volunteers for last week’s club came from 10 different churches and organisations across the area and wouldn’t have been possible without the shared desire to approach mission in a connected, joined up approach.

 

Further holiday clubs are planned for the Wren’s Nest Estate in the Summer of 2020 and on the Kates Hill Estate in October Half Term, two of the most economically-deprived areas in the Dudley borough. If you would like to volunteer to help at either of these holiday clubs, please email lisa@lovedudley.org.uk to register your interest.




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