11 August 2015
Fun in the sun for children in care at Herd Farm
A group of Leeds children, including some who are in care, after have been treated to a fun packed activity day including a surprise visit from Leeds Rhinos stars.
The special day, organised by Leeds City Council’s Kinship Support Team, saw 24 looked after children and their kinship carers take part in an action-packed day at Herd Farm Residential Activity Centre.
Since opening in 2000, the converted barn set in 16 acres that is Herd Farm has been making a difference to children’s and young people’s lives by letting them develop skills and build confidence through challenging indoor and outdoor activities.
The children and their carers took part in an assault course and became the first to try out a brand new and exciting high ropes course.
The children and young people had an action packed day fully engaging and challenging their own skills on the Herd Farm equipment supported by Herd Farm activity workers.
Along with the children, young people and carers, Leeds Rhinos first team player Liam Sutcliffe and Dan Busfield from the Leeds Rhinos Foundation were invited to come along a join in the fun.
Councillor Lucinda Yeadon, deputy leader and executive member for children and families, said:
“Herd Farm is a great place for children and young people to develop skills and gain confidence. Here at the council we’re proud to have this facility available to us as it is so beneficial to many young people’s lives”.
Dan Busfield, Partnership Manager at the Leeds Rhinos Foundation, said:
“The Leeds Rhinos Foundation values the role we play in changing lives through sport on many levels. Our partnership with Leeds City Council enables us to develop a joint approach in ensuring Leeds is a child friendly city which enables young people to develop in positive environments”.
Liam Sutcliffe, first team player at Leeds Rhinos, said:
“It was great to come up to Herd Farm Activity Centre and see the new high ropes facility. The young people were having a fantastic time and all had a smile on their face whilst challenging themselves, which is a valuable lesson in life. I think the Rhinos should come back here soon to get involved”.
As part of their visit the carers were given a tour of Herd Farm and some of the facilities and resources onsite available to groups, such as birthday parties and private hire.
The 16 acre activity centre borders with Harewood Estate and is owned and run by Leeds City Council. It provides a safe and inclusive environment for children of all ages and abilities with dedicated staff. As the winner of the British Gas-sponsored Child Friendly Leeds Awards (Best Place for Children and Young People category), Herd Farm is seven miles from Leeds City Centre with easy access from the A61 Harrogate Road.
Currently welcoming school residential trips and groups of up to 42 people, Herd Farm will be increasing this to 50 this coming winter, allowing more children to benefit from its facilities. Groups may also choose to participate in half day or progressive outdoor learning experiences at the Residential Activity Centre.
Kinship care is when children are being brought up by members of their extended families, friends or other people who are connected with them, for a variety of reasons. Where it is safe and appropriate to do so, the city council actively encourages kinship care as a positive alternative to children becoming looked after, and offer support and advice to the families.