This year the Municipality of Debrecen provides summer holiday childcare for primary school children aged between 6 and 14 living in Debrecen, organised by the Family and Child Welfare Centre of the City of Debrecen.
The location is the Vörösmarty Mihály Elementary School and Primary Art School in Debrecen from 3rd July to 18th August 2023. This year’s childcare was presented at a press conference on 3rd July 2023 by Diána Széles, Deputy Mayor of Debrecen, Aurélia Ibolya Orosz, Head of the Family and Child Welfare Centre of Debrecen City and András Törő, President of the Debrecen Charity Board.
As Diána Széles said, there is an increasing demand among Debrecen families for childcare organised by the municipality and financed from the city’s own budget, which is free of charge, with parents only having to pay a fee for meals provided by the Debrecen Centre for the Management of Institutions (Dim), at the same rate as during the school year. Some children have to pay the fees for the school holidays from 3rd July to 18th August they are always here. The Debrecen municipality also tries to help families struggling to provide summer care and camping for their children through the city’s relief fund. This year, the emergency fund will provide support for camping for children living in Debrecen on the basis of a call for applications. For years, the municipality has been trying to make summer childcare as enjoyable as possible with a number of interesting activities and programmes. Volunteers from the member organisations of the Debrecen Charity Board, the staff of the Family and Child Welfare Centre of the City of Debrecen, and teachers and students working in the community are of great help in this. It is heart-warming that through the shared experiences, in many cases, “surrogate grandmother-surrogate grandchild” relationships are formed between the adult helpers and the children, and this is why many children like to participate in this summer programme. Diána Széles thanked DKV Debreceni Közlekedési Zrt., which transports the children free of charge to external events such as the zoo, stadium visits or the Sziget-Kék play park. This also shows that Debrecen is a caring city, as there is a broad cooperation around summer childcare for the benefit of children.
Aurélia Ibolya Orosz, head of the Family and Child Welfare Centre of Debrecen, said that although they already have experience in this field, this year’s summer childcare is the first time that they have organised it in a complex way. They have taken great care to ensure that the 211 children for whom their parents have requested this summer programme have activities adapted to their age and level of development, that they are completely safe and that their health status is taken into account, for example, in the case of meals. The Family and Child Welfare Centre staff, in their contacts with schools and kindergartens, have already met several children who are here for this summer programme, which will help ensure that the children feel safe here. 24 teachers are also helping out during these weeks, as well as volunteer pensioners and staff from the Debrecen Institute of Primary Care and Health Promotion (Daefi). As usual, the programme will include handicrafts, folk children’s games, board games and dance. There will also be experiential music-making, where children will be able to compose their own songs, which will positively affect their creativity.
András Törő, President of the Debrecen Charity Board, also emphasised how this summer childcare project was the fruit of a diverse collaboration. Almost half of the 28 member organisations of the body have indicated that they can contribute to the children’s summer by organising some kind of programme – they will be present on 27 occasions with sessions. Many students will also help through community service. András Törő emphasised that love is always ingenious, so they are still waiting for applications from those who would like to help from the Debrecen Charity Board member organisations and can contribute to making these weeks more meaningful for the children. The President of the Charity Board also mentioned that through the City Aid Fund, dozens of families in Debrecen have already been able to help their children to go to camp, and they are still waiting for applications. Information on the conditions can be found on the website www.debrecen.hu under the heading “Municipal Aid Fund”.
It was also reported at the briefing that there are already around 150 children attending and that this average daily attendance is expected to continue until the end of the programme. Applications for the summer childcare scheme have been closed. Deputy Mayor Diána Széles said there are also children with special educational needs among the participants. In the future, the municipality intends to provide more help to Debrecen families to ensure that these children can have as many summer experiences as possible.
Source and photo credit: debrecen.hu