Through your eyes: Holiday Club from a parent’s perspective

I can’t remember when we first came across A Touch of the Wild but we enjoyed a few family open days in the woods when the girls were very small. They loved to run around in the woods and play in the mud kitchen but more than anything they loved the campfire!  Ever since the eldest was five, we have tried to let her do some holiday club in the woods but often we were limited to other places that could take under-fives so both children could go to the same place.  Mostly they enjoyed the other clubs, but sometimes they did not want to go at all. 

As we approached the Summer of 2020 after a long few months of working from home and home-schooling, my mind turned to holiday clubs.  Initially I assumed none would be open at all, but then there was a glimmer of hope from another provider so I kept checking the website and sure enough Woodland Adventure Club was back!  I asked the girls if they would like to go and they were so enthusiastic I booked both in for three weeks. 

After weeks of restrictions and limited contact with others we saw a huge change in the girls over those three weeks!  They sprung out of bed every morning, even when tired and got stuck into a variety of activities.  Even when it poured with rain for the whole day they still had a brilliant time.   They made lots of friends, tried new things and it really improved their confidence.  I think it must have felt like real freedom after being stuck at home for so long. 

I asked the girls what they liked the most.  One was clear it was campfire cooking as expected.  The other said it was “two stars and a wish” a session at the end of the day when they shared what they enjoyed and what they wished they could do again. 

As parents we were thrilled to be able to find a safe place for the girls to spend their days being kids and having fun.  It also allowed us to catch up on work, jobs at home and even go for lunch!  Everyone’s mental health was better for this club and I cannot recommend it highly enough. And the youngest has introduced me to bilberries!