Trafford Housing Trust is investing £49,000 over the summer to help local families struggling to afford the extra food needed over the school holidays.
The trust is offering free lunches, holidays clubs and events as part of twelve projects spread across the borough in areas including Broomwood, Altrincham, Sale Moor, Sale West, Urmston, Flixton, Partington, Stretford and Old Trafford.
Geared to assess the needs of each area: some will offer activities and lunch, whilst others will focus on providing food not just for the children, but the whole family.
Bringing together community groups, schools and organisations; activities will include opportunities for the children to learn how to make and prepare healthy food as well as time to play and tackle fun projects in groups.
“The summer holidays can be a very stressful time for parents, and for many families, the financial pressure of covering meals which are provided free of charge by schools during term time can be an additional stress,” said Fay Jackson, Trafford Housing Trusts Social Investment Manager.
“Lack of food over the summer holidays can have a detrimental impact on the health and wellbeing of children resulting in educational setbacks when they return to school. The local groups we have invested in are well placed to support families over the summer with activities, food, and information, and we hope everyone has a really enjoyable summer.”
The holiday hunger initiative is the first time Trafford Housing Trust’s Social Investment fund has launched a targeted request for projects to step forward and help tackle the rising problem of child poverty in the borough – following a pilot lunch club in Sale Moor last summer, which was at full capacity every day.
The funds will enable 5,700 free lunches to be given out to school children, with all projects set to run for at least 4 weeks of the summer break.
Holiday hunger and child poverty are regarded as a growing issue nationally as years of austerity and welfare changes hit the poorest families across the country.
Figures suggest that three million UK children are at risk of experiencing ‘significant hunger’ during the school break, with 231,700 children living in poverty here in the north-west.
For further details of where the projects visit the Trafford Housing Trust website or Trafford Housing Trust’s Customer Care team on 0300 777 7777.