The Boredom Busters initiative was launched in response to a growing need identified for families to have access to free or low-cost activities to tackle both financial insecurity and the effects of COVID-19, which impacted families financially as well as increasing isolation as children and families could not access community activities.
Initially, Boredom Busters was to be holiday provision run in partnership with Taught by Muhammad community cafés, where children and families would have been able to access free activities and food in a dignified way in their local community, particularly in SIMD areas. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we developed activities which could instead be shared online, Mon-Fri for 7 weeks throughout the summer holidays, tailoring activity ideas for different age groups; Under 5’s, 6-10 year olds, 11-13 year olds, Teenagers and Families.
We also developed activity packs for families which were distributed through the Taught by Muhammad Foodbank, so although we could not engage with families directly, we ensured we still met our intended outcome – an increased number of children and families accessed free holiday arts/crafts activities, while also receiving food support. The bags included various resources such as packs of pens, pencils, colouring sheets and tote bags, cards and card games, glow sticks, slime and stress balls and pots with seeds and soil for growing at home.