“Portadown Gets Active” — A scheme to support local children and end holiday hunger

“Portadown Gets Active” — A scheme to support local children and end holiday hunger

April 6, 2018

Craigavon, N.I., 6 April 2018Children in Northern Ireland together with local community organization Oasis Youth are running an Easter scheme to support local children in Portadown, providing nutritious meals and further education through a wide range of activities.  The program is being delivered in partnership with the community and voluntary sector, statutory agencies, local schools and local government.

This Easter more than 100,000 children are at risk of going hungry.  What should be a time of enjoyment for many children and young people is, in fact, often a battle for families against food insecurity, social isolation and lack of exercise.

Local children learning how to bake fifteens at “Portadown Gets Active” Easter scheme.

The “Portadown Gets Active” program was created in response to evidence that many families face severe difficulties during holiday periods when free school meal entitlement ends.  This project not only provides a healthy snack and lunch, but also gives children the opportunity to take part in various indoor and outdoor activities focused on health, wellbeing and nutrition and, during the summer program, gain an OCN qualification in Healthy Living. 

Chief Executive of Children in Northern Ireland, Pauline Leeson, CBE, said: “The absence of free school meals is even more important during holiday periods as family budgets are already stretched.” 

“School holidays are an expensive time for families where there is financial strain on increased food budgets, childcare costs and paying for activities to keep children and young people entertained.  Many parents are faced with the difficult choice of how to feed their whole family, with many parents going without in order to feed their children.”

The project in Portadown is a partnership between Oasis Youth Portadown, Children & Young People’s Strategic Partnership, Pathways Activities with additional support from the Public Health Agency, food supplier Brakes UK and the Almac Group.

Kevin Reid, Almac Global VP of Marketing visited the Easter scheme and commented: ”Playing our part in the local community is a key priority for Almac and we are proud to support this fantastic initiative. It is vital to ensure our children and young people are given the opportunity to achieve and develop the skills they need to succeed in life and this scheme offers a range of activities which will stay with them as they transition into adulthood.”

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About Almac Group

‘Partnering to Advance Human Health’

The Almac Group is an established contract development and manufacturing organization that provides an extensive range of integrated services to the pharmaceutical and biotech sectors globally. The services range from R&D, biomarker discovery development and commercialization, API manufacture, formulation development, clinical trial supply, IXRS® technology (IVRS/IWRS) through to commercial-scale manufacture.

The international company is a privately owned organization that has organically grown over almost 50 years and now employs close to 5,000 highly skilled personnel. Almac is headquartered in Craigavon, Northern Ireland with operations in the UK, Ireland, across the US (Pennsylvania, North Carolina and California) and in Asia (Singapore and Tokyo).

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