Make your summer one to smile about

Published: Monday, 10th July 2023

Throughout July the Oxford City Council will be running a social media campaign #MakeYourSummer to encourage families and young people to look at holiday activities across the city to suit any budget.

Aimed to get people thinking before activities get booked up, the campaign will highlight the many different offers available for young people and families.

Oxford City Council’s Youth Ambition team and community partners are getting ready to help make summer special for young people and families struggling with the cost of living.

Youth Ambition will offer four free weeks of activities during the summer holidays in Littlemore and Northway, and Friday multi-sport sessions in Blackbird Leys, for young people age 11-19. For families on a tight budget these provide opportunities to take part in fun and challenging activities, from ice skating to museum trips, that might otherwise not be available.

The council also funds a number of community groups that organise holiday activities, including Donnington Doorstep, Blackbird Leys Adventure Playground, Leys CDI and East Oxford Youth Partnership. There are activities for ages 5-18, many of them also include a free meal. 

The Holiday Activities and Food programme also provides a wide range of summer activities for children on benefits-related free school meals, with activities including sports, tech, music and video production, art, drama and bushcraft, and a free meal included in the events.

The council’s GO Active programme is also helping families enjoy free and low cost activities every week, and has plenty of ideas to make your summer special. Online listings provide something for everyone, from culture to sport to nature reserves. As part of GO Active, the county-wide You Move offer gives families on free school meals great discounts and free activities to enjoy together, from discounted stay and play to free cricket to day trips.

“Our kids and teens are getting excited about the summer holidays, but it can be a stressful time for parents on a budget or limited time off.

“There are plenty of ways to have a great summer in Oxford without busting the budget. Our summer activities programme provide safe space for young people to enjoy a whole range of activities, and there are great offers for family activities, ideas for free days out and ways to make the most of what’s on in Oxford.

“Now is the time to get thinking and plan your summer in Oxford this year. Activities begin as soon as term ends, and will carry on through the holidays. Make the most of what’s on offer, make your summer!”

Councillor Chewe Munkonge, Cabinet Member for Leisure and Parks