Christmas @UFA: safe residentials for students unable to travel home

Education charity UFA (University of the First Age) are offering fun, safe residentials with appropriate Covid-19 safety measures, for international school students staying in the UK over Christmas due to coronavirus restrictions

UFA are teaming up with WHG (Whitehouse Guardianships) and youth hostelling charity YHA (England & Wales) to provide residentials in four stunning, historic YHA centres, with dedicated staff teams and pastoral care to ensure students who are a long way from home will stay safe and happy over the Christmas holidays.

WHG have been providing guardianship services for international boarding school students for 25 years and have adapted their holiday provision this year to meet the added challenge of Covid-19.

Will Hume, Director at WHG, said:

WHG are delighted to be working with two great and experienced organisations such as UFA & YHA to host international students who cannot return home this Christmas. The programme has been created with a lot of thought to entertain our students in beautiful—and very safe—environments.

UFA’s Christmas Experiences will balance a programme of stimulating activities with opportunities for the young people to unwind, connect with each other and learn new skills. Plans range from Christmas craft sessions and fireside storytelling, to multimedia workshops and outdoor survival.

Andy Barnett, Head of Sales and Network Development at YHA (England & Wales) said:

We are delighted to assist UFA in providing safe and secure accommodation for international students this Christmas. Our fingers are crossed for snow during their stay so the students can experience a true British Christmas with us, with plenty of activities arranged.

We pride ourselves on the warm welcome we give all our guests, but this stay will be extra special given the time of year. The youth hostel teams are very much looking forward to welcoming the students.

UFA, who are well-known for delivering the UK government’s flagship summer youth programme, National Citizen Service (NCS), have brought in elements of this style of ‘life skills’ learning, with activities planned to inspire the young people to work together on creating, managing and promoting their own projects.

Director at UFA, Ralph Tonge, said:

We are very much looking forward to delivering this exciting programme with YHA and WHG; we are absolutely determined that these young people will have a wonderful Christmas residential experience which will be safe, rewarding and fun.

Residentials run from 11 December 2020 to 5 January 2021 at YHA Edale, YHA Langdale, YHA Stratford-upon-Avon and YHA Haworth. To find out more or download the brochure see here

Find out more about BETA member YHA here