AN AWARD-winning charity in Boscombe is looking for extra funding to provide wrap-around activities and care for children all year round.

Creative Kids, who operates out of the Sovereign Shopping Centre, run holiday and after school arts clubs for children aged six to 14 to help them realise their creative potential.

The charity, which was recognised with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service for 2016, has been hosting a half term holiday arts club for local children and held a Halloween fundraiser in their new unit in the Sovereign Shopping Centre to raise money for future projects as well as their Halloween Party, which will be held in their unit on Saturday November 2 from 12pm to 3pm.

Social Entrepreneur Cary Lightfoot, who founded the charity in May 2008, said: “Our vision is a society that invests in its children’s creativity; where all children are given free access to arts education so they can realise their creative potential.

“We manage a fully equipped Arts Education Centre in Boscombe providing local children access to arts education. Through working with volunteers and local artists, the charity hosts free and affordable arts events to encourage children’s participation and engagement with the arts.”

As well as providing their holiday and afterschool workshops, Creative Kids also tour across the South of England in their specially adapted VW van offering free pop-up arts at national arts festivals.

The volunteer run charity have also recently been able to convert empty storage spaces above their units in the Sovereign Centre into a new Events HQ which will also provide a teaching and learning program for young people age 16 + who are not in employment, education or training.

Cary continued: “We offer a fun, safe place that children can come to after school every day and make new friends. Kids can also play board games, use iPads and listen to music.

“We particularly want to support families who can't afford childcare, do not have internet at home, are home educators or have children with learning difficulties. We currently serve 496 local families.”

With their new unit next door to their existing unit, the charity want to turn it into a pop-up gallery and help local artists, as well as university students, showcase their works and help inspire the next generation of artists in Boscombe.

“We have received grant funding to expand our current program to serve up to 30 children per day and open a free Gallery Space for local emerging artists next door in Unit 4,” said Cary.

“We plan to become more public facing, open our space up to community and connect our children to exhibiting artists and their work and to inspire them to gain a National Qualification in the Arts.

“We would like to especially thank New River Retail for the gifted space, The Talbot Village Trust, The Alice Ellen Cooper Dean Trust for capital funds and The Hays Foundation for subsidising free and affordable spaces for disadvantaged children to attend.”

The charity's Halloween party is open to the public as well as members of the Creative Kids group. To find out more and purchase tickets, visit