The Holiday Scheme was the idea of Lilias Graham, a social worker for the Scottish Episcopal Church. Lilias was based in the Gorbals area of Glasgow in the 1950s. Many families lived with poverty, illness and unemployment. Her idea was to help the children’s health and wellbeing by getting them away from the city for a week and she set up a network of families across the country willing to look after the children.
Between 1986 and 1994 the scheme became part of The Aberlour Child Care Trust organisation. The scheme expanded to cater for the needs of more children from within Greater Glasgow and the West of Scotland areas.
In 1994 we became an independent charity, securing charitable status in our own right and governed by our own constitution, which allows for the Holiday Scheme to be managed by a committee of up to eleven volunteers. The committee includes two users of the service. Some committee members have church affiliations and some have none. We have links with statutory services to ensure compliance with changing legislation and best practice.
Copies of the Constitution and latest Annual Report are available in the download section.
The welfare of the children who are involved with the Scheme is always paramount. We continue to provide individual holidays for children with volunteer host families. This year 13 young folk will be spending a week with a host family, from the Borders to Skye.
Over the years we have expanded to offer family caravan holidays. As this demand has increased we have been able to raise the funds to purchase and run five static caravans at Wemyss Bay, which can accommodate families of 6, 8 or in one case 10 people.All are centrally heated and double glazed, three have wheelchair ramp access, one is fully wheelchair accessible, complete with a wet room. This addition in 2012 enabled us to greatly improve our service to families of children who are wheelchair users, particularly older wheelchair users and those with multiple care needs.
In 2014 a caravan at River Tilt Holiday Park, near Blairgowrie, was donated to the Charity. This quietly located caravan is ideal for children within the autistic spectrum.
To recognise 60 years of the Holiday Scheme we held a service of thanksgiving on Saturday 4 June 2016 at St Margaret's Episcopal Church, Newlands, Glasgow.