Holiday Hunger – Tackling food poverty in school aged children – South Ribble Borough Council
Posted on 2nd March, 2021
School holidays are normally considered times where children can enjoy themselves with friends and family; no early mornings and no official breaktimes. That 3.30 pm bell ringing on the last day of a term signifies an endless possibility of fun for a week or two! However, for some children school holidays are dreaded, as it is the only place that they are guaranteed enough food.
For South Ribble Borough Council, tackling food poverty began in October 2019. The first scheme aimed to provide enough food that would effectively replace the free school meals children would usually receive at lunchtime. The wards with the highest deprivation figures were identified, and the school and community workers identified the children that were most at risk of not being fed adequately during the school holidays. South Ribble Borough Council were keen that the scheme was run in a way that was non-stigmatising and chose to issue vouchers which would be circulated through the local schools and then redeemed at a local community centre where Council Officers had set up ‘pop up’ shops.