We know what it is like to paddle in the sea for the first time, to see the city skyline at night and to feel the sand between your toes. At YHA we believe that every young person should have the opportunity to travel to a new place, learn vital life skills and discover new environments.
We also know that for children caring for a disabled parent, coming to terms with the loss of a sibling, those without a home of their own and for those facing relentless treatments, a break is just something they couldn’t imagine. We can support these children and their families to access positive life changing experiences, creating memories that last a lifetime.
We prioritise applications from children and young people who are experiencing exceptionally challenging lives, or who are facing a crisis or emergency situation and as a result of these situations are experiencing financial hardship on a daily basis.
Our guidance notes can support you to complete the application. If you need support to complete the application or you have any questions please contact our breaks team on 01629 592 723 or by an email at [email protected]
The Break you are applying for must make a significant difference to the child or young person’s life so please tell us as much as you can about why this will make a real difference. To be eligible the child or young person must be between the ages of 2 and 18 (up to 19th birthday) and meet at least 2 of the following criteria. In crisis and emergency situations be may consider applications for 0-2 year olds (please contact the Breaks Team)
- Is disabled or has a life limiting or threatening condition (please refer to our disability guidance)
- Experienced homelessness or are living in temporary accommodation
- Witnessed or experienced domestic violence
- Have experienced bereavement (either the loss of a parent or sibling)
- Is a young carer
- Is a sibling of a disabled child or a child who has a life limiting or threatening condition
- Lives in an area of deprivation (please refer to our guidance map)
- Has an annual household income below £25,000 (gross)
Guidance notes can be found here.
Our programmes information
Our funds are limited and we are only able to provide our Breaks programmes due to the generous support of YHA supporters who raise these vital funds. We can only provide a family with one break per year. All requests for a YHA Break must be made by completing an application form. All applications should be made by a parent or guardian on behalf of a specific child or young person. You must have permanent legal residency in the UK and have lived in the UK for the last 12 months. YHA does not provide money or grants to other charities, trusts or organisations. The child or young person must be 2 - 18 years old (up to 19th birthday) at the time of application. In crisis and emergency situations be may consider applications for 0-2 year olds, (please contact the Breaks Team). YHA can only consider applications made during an advertised application period. If you are requesting a break for a child with a life limiting condition please make us aware of this on the application form. YHA family breaks will provide accommodation for a maximum of two nights and will provide breakfast and evening meal. YHA family breaks will provide accommodation for a maximum of 2 adults their child/ren under the age of 18. (If you have additional caring needs please contact our Breaks Team to discuss this in more detail). The locations, times and dates of breaks may on occasion be subject to change at the discretion or YHA for operational reasons. Whilst we will try to allocate accommodation on the preferences selected we are unable to guarantee these choices. The child or young person must meet the qualifying criteria. The application must be supported by a professional, this can be a teacher, support worker, or a health or social care worker. YHA will not provide care or childcare for the duration of your break. You will retain parental responsibility at all times. YHA is unable to provide transport as part of the YHA Breaks for Families Programme. You will be required to make your own travel arrangements to and from the hostel or camp. Breaks can only take place at a YHA hostel, the availability of all breaks, including the number of available breaks, locations and available dates is at the discretion of YHA. YHA cannot reimburse groups, families or individuals for money that has already been spent or for breaks that have already taken place. We are not able to help children and young people in local authority care, including those living with foster carers. All successful applications will be required to complete a YHA Breaks Experience Monitoring form which will help us understand the difference the break made to your family and how we can continually improve our support to other families.