The school summer holidays usually signal the time to head for a break and spend quality time with the family.
But for some families in Dundee, six weeks off brings more anxiety than excitement as they stack up the costs related to the weeks between the end of June and the beginning of August.
While it’s great to have your children at home and around for a few short weeks to have fun, the harsh reality of affording to feed and entertain them can quickly take its toll.
One Dundee community centre is doing all it can to make the holidays fun and affordable for everyone, mum and dad included.
The Brooksbank Centre in Linlathen is laying on lunch for families in the local area on a daily basis for a pittance.
Thanks to centre manager Ginny Lawson and the staff at the centre, along with the Dundee Bairns project, hundreds of families can afford a healthy and tasty lunch every day for just 50p a head.
Ginny said: “For several years now we have provided meals and plenty to do for local families throughout the holidays.
“This year is no exception and over the next six weeks hundreds of kids and families will come through the doors.”
Dundee Bairns, which provides meals to children in areas of deprivation in Dundee during school holidays, will provide 6,000 breakfasts and more than 21,000 lunches to city kids over the next six weeks.
The programme – previously known as the Fun and Food Programme – was set up in 2016 by former Dundee City Council chief executive David Dorward, who had a strong desire to start a school holiday meals service in the city.
Mum Alana Grant, 31, has been going along every day with her four children, Ellie, 12, Lennon, 8, Alix, 6, and Reign, 2. Alana, from Linlathen said: “The centre and the staff here are fantastic.
“The school holidays can be a very expensive time and it can also be difficult to know what to do with the children every day.
“There’s something going on here all the time, it means they can all take part in it.”
“Where else could we all get lunch with a drink, something for the kids to do and usually a goodie bag to take home for under £5 for all of us?”
Rhianne Watt, 22, and her son Oliver, 5, have been attending the centre during the summer holidays for the past three years.
She added: “It’s so affordable and there’s so much for Oliver to do.
“It’s also sociable for me. I can mix with the other mums instead of being stuck at home on my own with Oliver.”
The range of activities put on by the centre during the day also provides kids with a chance to meet new people and learn new skills.
Mum of four Kelly Whyte, 28, said: “My eldest can be quite shy but going to the kick boxing here has allowed her to make new friends and she has gained a lot of confidence.”
And all the excitement of the fun and games can get the kids working up an appetite.
Kelly added: “My kids are usually really fussy but when it’s lunchtime here they eat everything!
“I would definitely recommended it to any one who is thinking of coming along.”