61 YHAs throughout England and Wales to host a weekend of family events
YHA Day is back for the 3rd year in a row, but this year it will be for a whole weekend. From 6 – 7 September, YHA (England and Wales) is opening the doors of 61 of its properties and hosting a range of family-friendly activities.
Water regattas, bike rides, BBQs and treasure hunts are just some of the diverse family fun events that will be taking place at YHAs for YHA Day 2014.
The events are a ‘thank you’ to the local communities in which the Youth Hostels are based. Last year volunteers from the local communities gave 120,000 hours of help enabling the charity to run the network efficiently and continue to provide outstanding accommodation, learning experiences and facilities for young people and their families.
YHA (England and Wales) Chief Executive Caroline White explained: “We really appreciate the support we receive from local communities, which is one of the reasons why, this year, we have decided to extend our YHA Day celebrations over an entire weekend. YHA Day is our way of saying thank you. It also gives us the opportunity to welcome newcomers to YHA and give them a sense of what we’re all about.”
Importantly, YHA Day is also designed to raise awareness of the 84-year old charity and the dramatic image change it has had in recent years. Since 2011 more than £22 million has been invested in the network, which numbers more than 130 properties. Today, as well as contemporary styled interiors, many YHAs boast private en suite bedrooms, licensed bars and restaurants ,family-friendly public spaces and camping facilities, all a far cry from the last time many adults visited a YHA as a youngster and sheet sleeping bags, draughty dormitories and chores were the norm. Today, however, Youth Hostels couldn’t be more different, and you don’t have to be a member to stay in one.
YHA’s primary purpose is to create unique opportunities for young people and throughout the weekend YHAs will be fundraising for the charity’s Breaks for Kids bursary fund which pays for residential breaks for children from financially disadvantaged backgrounds when they take part in a school or community group break away. The ongoing financial support of members and visitors for Breaks for Kids, means YHA can create more opportunities for more young people to have amazing adventures and create memories that will last a lifetime.
Caroline added: “YHAs have changed significantly in response to the modern traveller’s expectations, however our mission still holds true: to reach more than one million young people and broaden their horizons gaining knowledge and independence through new experiences of adventure and discovery. YHA Day is an opportunity for us to let as many people as possible know about what a great time they can have when they stay with us or use our facilities.”
Details of all events being held at Youth Hostels throughout England and Wales on YHA Day 2014 can be found at http://www.yha.org.uk/yha-day