Hundreds of children are likely to miss meals during the school holidays as increasing numbers of families struggle to pay the bills, charities have warned. This is from STV…
A survey found that 21% of households with children had experienced some form of food poverty in the last six months, a figure that rises to 44% for adults under 25.
The summer holidays add to the burden because families which depend on free school meals lose the benefit out of term time, food charity FareShare said.
More than a quarter of parents say they can’t provide food for all the meals their children need, while more than half have gone without food to feed their family.
The Trussell Trust revealed that the number of people using its foodbanks for emergency supplies has rise by 170% in the last year.
Chris Mould, chairman of the Trussell Trust, said: “That one in five parents in this country are struggling to afford food for their families and thousands more people are turning to foodbanks for emergency food is a stark reminder of how tough things have become for many ordinary people.
“Trussell Trust foodbanks have recently seen the biggest ever increase in numbers turning to us for help – almost 350,000 people received three days emergency food in 2012-13, 170 per cent more than the previous year.”
Supermarket chain Tesco has announced it is increasing its donations to foodbanks by 30%, in line with a similar move in December.
Tesco spokeswoman Rebecca Shelley said: “This research reveals that since our last national food collection in December, the problem of food poverty in the UK has increased and shows no signs of improving.
“It’s hitting families hard, especially when resources like free school meals, breakfast clubs and after school clubs are not available.
“Because we have stores in so many communities across the UK, we are working with the help of our customers, thousands of our colleagues and volunteers from the Trussell Trust and FareShare to help provide emergency food to people who are struggling.”
As schools provide more help with food during term time, does it hide deeper problems that emerge during the holidays? What, if anything, can be done to fill the gap left when free school meals, breakfast clubs and after school clubs are not available?