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Community program’s new digital direction

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A new digital program is set to entertain families while they spend more time at home during the coronavirus pandemic.

Lake Macquarie City Council’s You’re Kidding Me program will now feature a series of free workshops and activities online.

The digital move is a response to the COVID-19 crisis, and a way for parents to access information in a time when it’s needed more than ever.

Kicking off on Tuesday 12 May to coincide with National Families Week, this year’s You’re Kidding Me will include five workshops aimed at both parents and their children.

Each workshop will cover a different topic, including cooking and healthy eating, children’s emotions during the current pandemic, music, and STEM learning.

The council’s Community Planner, Jess Salvador, said it was important to create a program that focused on supporting families and creating stronger communities.

You’re Kidding Me is in its sixth year and, with usual activities not possible with current restrictions, Ms Salvador said the team behind the event had worked hard to tailor it to go online.

“The current situation has seen more parents at home with their kids,” Ms Salvador said.

“We’ve designed our workshops to be informative as well as enjoyable.

“There’s a mix of sessions where parents can learn new skills, as well as interactive activities where kids can get involved too.”

The first session will be led by nutritionist Mandy Dos Santos of Little People Nutrition, who will guide families through a tutorial on how to cook an easy and healthy lunch.

Little People Nutrition will also be offering a Q&A session on Tuesday 19 May, where parents can ask questions about getting the right food for their children’s growing bodies.

Lake Macquarie Mayor Kay Fraser welcomed You’re Kidding Me’s new format.

“Children’s development is something that is very important to me and it’s wonderful that we’re able adapt You’re Kidding Me to an online platform and provide as many resources as we can to the community,” Cr Fraser said.

“The program is in its sixth year now and we know how much local parents value the information and support, which I think is even more pertinent given the wide-reaching impact that COVID-19 is having on our community.”

You’re Kidding Me workshops are free but each session has a maximum attendance, so bookings are essential.

All sessions will be run via Zoom. Registered participants will receive the link to the session the day before.

Go to Lake Macquarie City Council’s website for more information.

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