Wolverhampton families will have a host of free activities to choose from in the city this summer, many including free food for children, as well as a variety of support and advice for getting through the cost of living crisis.

School holidays can be difficult and expensive for families, but the City of Wolverhampton Council has this year invested an extra £250,000 in Yo! Wolves activities to boost the number of children who can access them along with a free meal.

The Yo! Wolves summer programme includes a wide range of free activities for eligible children and young people, co-funded by the Department for Education, along with a comprehensive selection of free and paid for activities open to everyone. 

They include sports, arts and crafts, dance and drama workshops, fun days and around 50 Summer Reading Challenge events in libraries.

There’s also more than 2,000 hours of free activities at WV Active for the first time this summer from family fun swimming, swimming lessons, including sessions for those with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), racket sports, Bikeability, athletics and youth gyms.

The council has also funded Voice4Parents’ Summer Short Break Leisure Programme, offering a range of activities for children and young people with SEND as well as their siblings.  Families just need to live in Wolverhampton and be members of the parent carer support group Voice4Parents.

Other cost of living support available includes:

  • Community shops –  great food at great prices in shops across the city and look out for regular sessions by our community chefs showing how to make tasty recipes using food from the shops – all details on our cost of living pages Cost of living support
  • Help with beds and bedding through the Good Night Project (details on the link above)
  • Help in making homes more energy efficient and reducing energy bills through our pilot with free digital tool Kuppa. Advice is also available about accessing grants to carry out certain home improvements. Keep an eye on our social media for pop up events in your community or see more on our webpages or visit Kuppa Tool (yourkuppa.com)
  • Support for men’s mental health through support group Mandem Meet up Wolves. The council is helping fund this group, which offers meetings and opportunities for men to get out and enjoy the great outdoors to take care of their mental wellbeing for them and their families. They meet first Monday of each month at 6pm to the Tribe Café at The Haymarket, Pendeford, WV8 1XE 
  • Residents can also apply direct for the Household Support Fund for one off help with a number of emergency household expenses, but priority is given to supporting food and fuel: 

    Gas and electricity
    Essential household items (white goods, small appliances)
    Other essentials (warm clothing and bedding)

Ensuring help is available to help Wolverhampton citizens through the cost of living crisis was close to the heart of the council’s late Leader, Councillor Ian Brookfield. This legacy is something Acting Leader, Councillor Stephen Simkins is dedicated to continuing.

Councillor Simkins said: “Councillor Brookfield was tireless in the work he did to ensure our residents had the help and support they need to get through the challenges of this cost of living crisis.

“We’re all committed to this same goal as a council and I’m determined to carry on with the great work he started.

“I know how expensive the summer school holidays can be for parents, so we’re pulling out all the stops to help children enjoy the summer without their parents having to worry about extra financial pressure on already stretched household budgets.

“We’ve put together a great summer of events, so children can have fun, keep active and eat for free at many venues. I hope this helps, but I’d urge people to get in touch if they’re still struggling, it’s not too late to get some advice and support.”