CHICKS provides free respite breaks for disadvantaged children

CHICKS is a children’s charity which provides disadvantaged children in the UK with free, week long respite breaks in the countryside and by the sea. The children are aged between eight and 15 and come from a variety of backgrounds. They may be living in poverty, suffering from abuse or act as young carers for sick or disabled family members. They may even be the children of injured service personnel. Their circumstances at home mean that they are missing out on ‘normal’ childhood experiences, and they all share the fact they desperately need a break. The children are referred to CHICKS by professional organisations such as social services, schools, youth groups, family support teams and other charities.

This year CHICKS aims to help 1,200 disadvantaged children, including those from many areas of London. During their break, the children have the chance to form happy childhood memories, make new friends and take part in activities like climbing, horse riding, surfing and team games. At CHICKS, many of the children are able to experience the first ‘holiday’ of their lives.

Although the respite breaks are free for the children, each child place in 2014 has cost the charity an average of £816. CHICKS receives no government funding and relies on voluntary donations as well as the support of hundreds of volunteers every year. Volunteers, aged over 18, stay at one of our two retreats for four nights and act as positive adult role models who interact with the children.

For more details about CHICKS please visit, call 01822 811020 or e-mail

Registered Charity in England & Wales (1080953) and in Scotland (SCO40536)

Partner Website:

London Concert Choir concerts:

Carols for Choir and Audience
(17 December 2014)