Holiday Activities and Food Programme 2023
What is HAF?
The Holiday Activities and Food Programme (HAF) is a nation-wide programme, funded by the Department for Education (DfE), enabling statutory school aged children in receipt of benefit related free school meals, to access FREE clubs and activities during the Easter, summer and Christmas holidays. Every eligible child receives a free hot meal, at every HAF activity session they attend. We want as many children as possible to be active, eat healthily, stay safe and HAVE FUN during the school holidays.
MoreLife are supporting some of the HAF programmes in Bedford. Alongside this they are offering free, fun and interactive activity packs to families all about making healthy lifestyle changes. If you would like access to these activity packs, fill in the survey here https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/freeMLresources/ and a member of the MoreLife team will be in contact with you.
Who is Eligible?
Children in reciept of benefit related free school meals are eligible for the HAF Programme. Not to be confused with the 'universal infant free school meals' as we know this can cuase some confusion. Children up to school year 3 automatically recieve universal free school meals, but children must also be registered for benefit related free school meals. For more information and to apply, please click here.
Other children who may be eligible for the HAF programme (depending on holiday period) include the following: Looked after Children, refugees and asylum seekers and children from families with no recourse to public funding. There will be a referral process in place for these children and referrals can be made by Schools and Children's services professionals.
How to book
We have a digital booking process in place and all activities need to be booked through our centralised booking system - E-Vouchers.
One month prior to school holidays commencing, all parents/carers of eligible children will be sent a unique Evoucher code and booking link from E-Vouchers, via email. This code can then be used to access the booking system and you can choose which activities and clubs you wish to book.
HAF Vouchers for Summer 23 will be sent out from 21st June via Email.
If you have not recieved your voucher code and booking link by 22nd June, please conatct your child's school directy. Should you contact the local offer, you will be directed back to your child's school for support.
Each child will have a number of credits, enabling them to access different HAF sessions across all of our providers, during the school holidays. The number of credits will be dependant on the holiday period:
For the Easter and Chritmas holidays, each child will be allocated a total of 4 credits, which will enable them to access up to 4 different HAF sessions.
For the Summer holidays, each child will be allocated a total of 16 credits, which will enable them to access up to 16 different HAF sessions.
Please note: We are unable to run HAF activities during the February, June and October half terms, in line with DfE guidance.
Evoucher codes are managed by schools - If bookings are live and you have not received your chilld's Evoucher code, or have any issues, please contact your child's school directly. If you contact the local offer, you will be directed to contact your child's school.
PLEASE NOTE: Providers will not be able to take bookings directly. All bookings must be made through our digital system, using your child's unique voucher code.
Click on the 'Holiday Activities Parents Guide' link to the right of this page, for a step by step guide of how to use the booking system.
We want to make sure that all families eligible for the Holiday Activities and Food Programme are able to access support and guidance that they may need.
CLICK HERE to visit our support pages, where you can find links to useful websites, information, and local organisations.
We have a range of different providers, dedicted to running FUN, SAFE and INCLUSIVE holiday clubs during the school holidays, across Bedford Borough. Some activities that these clubs offer include:
- Multi sport
- Arts and Crafts
- Roller sports
- Outdoor adventure
- Multi activity
Our providers and clubs may differ for each holiday period.
Children with SEND:
At Bedford Borough, we aim to make our HAF Programme as accessible and inclusive as possible. Children with varying levels of SEND are welcome at all of our HAF activities. Please ensure to let providers know, if you child requires any additional assistance.
We have a number of clubs running SEND specific provision this Summer in Bedford Borough.
Bookings can be made directly through the following organisations:
Bedford Mencap - http://www.bedfordmencap.org.uk/summer_playscheme.htm
Bedford & District Cerebral Palsy Society (BDCPS) - https://bdcps.charity/sign-up-to-love-admin/
You can find out more about the country wide HAF programme on the Department for Education's website here: Holiday activities and food programme 2023 - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)