Holiday camp plan for kids

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An artist’s impression of what ‘Camp Oasis’ will look like

A Liverpool charity is planning to build a holiday respite centre in Spain where local children and families can enjoy free holidays.

The charity’s initial plan is to buy approximately 25 acres of rural land in Murcia, Spain and the whole project is expected to cost around £150,000.

Paul Nilson, founder of Team Oasis, said: “We do have some very hard work ahead of us with sponsored events, bag-packing and seeking sponsors for the project.”

Mr Nilson wants the children and their carers to start enjoying the holiday retreat as soon as possible. As a result, the starting accommodation will be a number of strong family-sized tents with some later on being upgraded to caravans and eventually a couple of log cabins.

The first people using the respite camp centre will be volunteers and children from local schools as they will help the charity in preparing the land, planting trees and making it look like a suitable holiday getaway.

‘Camp Oasis’ will host up to 30 visitors per week and those chosen to attend will primarily be selected through referral either through a family member, neighbour, local churches or charities and through family support.

Team Oasis organisers stress that decisions for selection will always be based on the benefit of a Camp Oasis holiday to that child or carer and not through means testing or income.

They took some children from Toxteth and surrounding areas to Spain this summer but with their own centre this will become a much more common and more people will be able to be given a little respite.

The charity is also planning to build a centre of excellence in South Liverpool for children to visit and take part in activities.

Paul Nilson said: “Camp Oasis will offer holidays for children and carers that require some respite themselves. They might choose a holiday full of fun and beaches or they may prefer a quieter peaceful holiday to recuperate. It is their choice; we shall just make it happen.

“I love this project as at its heart it is caring and compassionate. We have a massive heart and a major desire to help Liverpool people that are in a difficult place and needing of real support to help them through their dark days.”

To donate to Team Oasis visit www.localgiving.com/charity/teamoasis. Every £10 donated online will be doubled to £20.

About Madelaine Cornforth, JMU Journalism