We had on offer in 2021 over...

6000+ face to face spaces

250,000+ hours of activities 

70+ venues across the city

13,000+ fresh hot meals provided daily 

Here is some more information about HAF...

Southampton City Council are delighted to be delivering the Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) programme during the Easter, Summer and Christmas 2021 school holidays. Funded by the Department for Education, we welcome the opportunity to provide free holiday provision, including nutritious food and enriching activities, for children aged 5-16 who are eligible for benefits-related free school meals.

We are working in collaboration with a significant range of providers to create a wonderful  programme of activities and events. These range from sport to skiing on the dry slopes, art workshops to drumming workshops, water sports to cooking classes. It also includes events such as a daily choir session, where the whole family can get involved as these will be delivered online and virtually.

We have over 48,000 funded spaces available and each child will be provided with tasty, nutritious food. Some of our providers are also hosting paid for spaces and we recommend visiting their websites to find out more (see listings for contact details).

Bookings are now live so see details below of how to book (please note spaces may be limited per child). More may be added in the next few weeks so keep checking for any updates. You can also use our interactive map to find out what is held in your local area so when you select a location it will take you directly to the relevant booking details.

Please email haf@southampton.gov.uk if you have any enquiries.

What is HAF?

Listen to Marcus Rashford promoting the HAF programme.  Marcus Rashford spreading the word | Holiday Activities & Food Programme 2021 - YouTube

The programme is designed to provide healthy food and enriching activities during the Easter, Summer and Christmas holidays to children who receive benefits-related free school meals.  It offers valuable support to families on lower incomes, giving them the opportunity to access rewarding and active activities alongside healthy meals over the school holidays.  Nationally community, private and voluntary organisations have played an invaluable role in this programme and Southampton City Council have engaged with a wide range of partners throughout the city for the delivery of this programme.

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With the aims; 

To coordinate free holiday provision - including healthy food and enriching activities - for children who receive benefits-related free school meals.

For children to;

  • eat more healthily over the school holidays

  • be more active during the school holidays

  • take part in engaging and enriching activities

  • be safe and not to be socially isolated

  • have greater knowledge of health and nutrition

  • be more engaged with school and other local services

The programme is;

  • Optional for eligible children to attend a range of provisions should they wish.

  • With a focus is on children eligible for benefits-related free school meals.

  • However at this stage it is not automatic for those pupils in receipt of Universal Infant Free School Meal (UIFSM)

  • We also encourage all activities to provide a number of places to children who are not eligible for FSM, however there is a small charge for these spaces which can be accessed through the booking system.

Some of the providers are Ofsted registered and can also take childcare vouchers for their pay as you go spaces if applicable. All providers meet the DfE framework of minimum standards (including safeguarding requirements and meals that meet school food standards).


Families may be eligible for tax free childcare or the childcare costs element of Universal Credit, through which families may be able to claim back up to 85% of their childcare costs.

More info: https://www.gov.uk/help-with-childcare-costs/universal-credit

Many of the activities are suitable for children with SEND and additional needs however all children are welcome to access all activities with support should that be needed.

Be Brave,

Try something new.