Taking the stress out of school holidays

Press Release – Mental Health Foundation

Schoolchildren across the country will soon be putting down their books for a well-earned break. For parents though, school holidays can be a stressful and expensive time, with kids wanting to take part in pricey activities that stretch the family budget.Taking the stress out of school holidays

Schoolchildren across the country will soon be putting down their books for a well-earned break.

For parents though, school holidays can be a stressful and expensive time, with kids wanting to take part in pricey activities that stretch the family budget.

Managing the comings and goings of whānau along with the household purse strings can be challenging, but the Mental Health Foundation (MHF) wants to inspire families to take heart and be inventive over the holiday break.

As part of Forget the Bling Bling – Do the Whānau Thing, a nationwide campaign launched by the Whangarei Gambling Action Group in 2005, parents and caregivers are encouraged to think outside the square.

The MHF came on board with the campaign in 2011 and MHF chief executive officer Judi Clements says there are many ways for families to have fun in the school holidays without spending a lot of money.

“The Forget the Bling Facebook page has plenty of ideas to keep tamariki occupied for hours these school holidays for little or no money,” she says.

“Spending time together on simple projects is a great way to connect with children. Giving time to each other for feel-good activities like foot rubs and breakfast in bed will make kids feel valued.

“Whānau can also get creative in the kitchen, burn up energy on a bush walk, or volunteer a few hours of their time for a good cause.”

Ms Clements says employers can also play a part in making the school holiday period easier for staff with school-aged children.

“The term break is a wonderful opportunity for many people to reconnect and have a lot of fun.

“But it’s also a hectic time for families, so a little bit of understanding and flexibility with leave goes a long way.”

Ideas on low-cost, fun activities for kids over the school holiday break, which runs from 20 April to 5 May, will be posted daily on the Forget the Bling Bling – Do the Whānau Thing Facebook page.

The page has been recently reorganised into themed photo albums with images of some of the colourful, creative and cost-effective activities Kiwi families took part in over the Christmas holiday period. This will make it easier for whānau to flick through and get inspired.

For more information, check out http://www.facebook.com/pages/Forget-the-bling-bling-do-the-whānau-thing/171172189632197?ref=hl.

ENDS

Content Sourced from scoop.co.nz
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