Funny Olympics and Lek Sunshine Games to conclude summer holidays
Today, the centre of Maribor was filled with children having fun at the Funny Olympics and Lek Sunshine Games to celebrate the end of the summer holidays. As part of the so-called Holidays with Friends, as the Maribor Friends of Youth Association (FYA) named their summer activities, 123 children from the humanitarian initiative A Wink at the Sun enjoyed free holidays financed with the help of FIHO funds and other donation campaigns by the Slovenian Association of Friends of Youth (SAFY) and FYA Maribor. A Wink at the Sun® initiative by the Slovenian Association of Friends of Youth (SAFY), enabling free holidays for children from socially disadvantaged families, has been supported by Lek, a Sandoz company, for 18 years.
Majda Struc, SAFY vice-president, presented this year’s figures: »This year we raised EUR 117,300 through the Wink at the Sun initiative, enabling free holidays to more than 390 children and over the last 18 years, around 11,000 children went on Wink holidays. In times when an increasing number of parents struggle to offer their children holidays or active, creative free-time activities, this support is truly invaluable.«
To make the last day of the holidays for the children in Maribor as cheerful and memorable as possible, Lek Sunshine Games accompanied the already traditional sports activities of the Funny Olympics. Lek Sunshine Games are part of the humanitarian campaign A Wink at the Sun with which SAFY and the pharmaceutical company Lek, a Sandoz company, enable holidays for children from socially disadvantaged families.
Within the Wink at the Sun campaign, SAFY this year paid particular attention to the health holidays camps for children with special needs from less privileged backgrounds, for whom, together with help from FIHO, EUR 19,600 have been raised. In addition, a socially responsible project Wink at the Sun has been running from June in collaboration with the Pošta Slovenije (Slovene Postal Services), where everyone can contribute to these health camps by purchasing sponge cloths, which are on sale at the Pošte Slovenije offices.
With SAFY, holidays in Maribor are always fun
During the long summer holidays there were plenty of activities to keep the children entertained in Maribor; including short daily thematic tours, all day trips, various art and other creative workshops, events and competitions, play-and-leisure time activities in the “quite corner”, watching cartoons in the SAFY-cinema, and hiking through the park.
Holidays with friends, activities for children and youth from Maribor, organised by FYA Maribor, started already during the Lent Festival at the end of June, with the natural science workshops at the Art camp in the city park. Later on, the workshops took place in the Centre for Creativity of Youth in Maribor (DUM). At least four workshops were held every day. From 1 July, short thematic daily tours or full-day Wednesday trips started. Altogether, FYA Maribor organized a total of 35 trips with around 40 children taking part in each trip; the largest number of participants was 92.
»During July and August, in total more than 600 children attended daily programs in the Maribor Centre for Creativity of Youth (workshops, trips, events), we registered around 5,000 visits, and this figure doubles if we add the activities within the Festival Lent. All activities were free with the exception of Wednesday tours and trips for which a surcharge was required. With the donation from the Večer newspaper we took an additional 55 children from socially disadvantaged families for a free daily trip to the seaside,« explained Saša Mikić, president of FYA Maribor and added that these holiday programs serve as a real life prep school encouraging children’s creativity, curiosity and motor development, independence, social skills, promotion of tolerance, patience and perseverance.