When Little Rebels Was Only An Idea

They say that big things can grow from small ideas and if anyone had told me that a random idea I’d had around 12 years ago would become the beginnings of the business I run today I wouldn’t have believed it.

There was very little technology when I was a child, computers were something of the future which I never really saw in school until it was nearly time to leave and I’m quite glad no one was around to record my life on social media, I don’t think I’d somehow survived!  The TV remote was me running across the sitting room to press a button when my Dad asked and our only house phone was fixed to the wall. It doesn’t mean I had a boring childhood though, far from it. We played out, we got messy and used our imaginations to make everything from games to kites and houses for our dolls to live in and we did it all with what we could find hanging around at home.

 

Why am I telling you this? Because it’s exactly what has led me to start Little Rebels Holiday Clubs and Workshops. Children have so much technology in their lives now both at home and at school that sometimes they just need a place to do ‘stuff’, somewhere they can make friends, make a mess and use their imaginations having loads of fun. I also know that art & crafts isn’t for everyone. I grew up in a house full of creative stuff and my Grandad was an artist but that doesn’t mean I would want to do it, although I was grateful that I always had the opportunity.

Fast track many years later and now as a parent myself I love doing the same activities with my own children although as I worked full time it was hard to find the time. As I worked in the art and technology departments of a senior school I could see on a daily basis how much emphasis was being put onto the academic subjects more each year as creative subjects were squeezed smaller. Many children missed out on the creative time they’d enjoyed in primary schools although this was dwindling too.

Growing up I always felt that I got so much more out of lessons where I could move around and use my imagination rather than sitting in silence learning in the same way as my peers.I’ve always been creative, it was just one of those things I loved to do. I can’t say I was the best pupil at school, I found being creative much easier than being academic although that proved to work in my favour in the following years as I’ve now got degrees in both art and interior design which have helped me immensely.

 

After many years in secondary education we went to live abroad on the beautiful island of Grand Bahama for a couple of years and as Charlie had just been born I had time on my hands to think about the future and it was during this time my dream which became Little Rebels started to be planned out and then unexpectedly started and became a reality. I’m taking Charlie on a visit to the island this year to see what he remembers, he was 5 last time he visited so it’ll be interesting to see the changes.

 

My girls attended Lucaya International School on the island and after being told they didn’t have a primary art teacher in school when we attended an open evening I soon found myself agreeing to teach voluntarily each week at the school. It was great fun and although I didn’t realise at the time it was to be the start of many future visits to primary schools to run art workshops and after school clubs, something which I have always loved doing.

 

It was over an Easter weekend one year that my craft workshops came to life when we were invited to celebrate Easter Sunday at our friends’ house along with several other families. When everyone was given their jobs for the day my contribution was to be Easter crafts to keep the kids amused and out of the hot sun, some of the crafts we did that day are still used at our Little Rebels Holiday Clubs now.

I was very fortunate to be able to live on such a beautiful island and as with many places it had it’s down sides to life. One place I got to visit during our stay was the Grand Bahama children’s home, it was a happy, joyful place to visit but when the island was affected by the most recent hurricane it had to be demolished. A new home has been built on the site now and was recently visited by Prince William during his Caribbean tour.

 

Over the last 8 years I’ve had the privilege to visit so many schools, meet lots of Little Rebels at birthday parties, workshops and holiday clubs locally and also get involved with both corporate and charity events. I’ve learnt so many things from everything I’ve done, it’s not just me who’s a Rebel at heart, there’s lots of children who want to be creative and lots of parents who want their children to be well looked after and have lots of fun in the holidays and that’s exactly what we do. Hopefully I’ll be able to spread the Rebel word even further over the next few years but meanwhile if you haven’t visited us yet why not get in touch and come to see us soon.

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