Holiday hunger scheme extended to cope with desperate families

School dinner

Charity says it will offer food and activities to more families in need in the west of Scotland 

3rd July 2017 by Robert Armour 0 Comments

A project feeding school pupils in the west of Scotland during the summer recess is being extended to cope with an influx of desperate children facing holiday hunger.

TFN revealed last month Children In Scotland’s Food, Families, Futures (FFF), scheme will offer lunch, activities and trips away to low income families struggling to cope as schools shut for summer.  

Now the charity has said the scheme will be extended to a total of 26 schools in the west to ensure that hard-up families can continue to receive free school meals.

Growth of the scheme follows successful pilots in Dalmarnock and Ibrox areas of Glasgow and ongoing academic evaluation of summer holiday clubs across the UK led by Professor Greta Defeyter of Northumbria University.

Early findings from the evaluation suggested that FFF increased academic attainment gain among children who took part. 

Participating primaries in Glasgow will now include Dalmarnock, Ibrox, Highpark, Langfaulds and Miller, and a joint club for Oakwood and St Benedict’s pupils.

Also part of the FFF summer schedule are three Gorbals community projects, Bridging the Gap, Task Childcare and Gorbals Youth Café, which will be open to children and families from Blackfriars and St Francis primaries.

Councillor Chris Cunningham, Glasgow City Council’s City Convener for Education, Skills & Early Years, welcomed the expansion. He said: “This is such an excellent initiative – and very effective as the outcomes from last year proved. 

“I'm delighted that the council is helping to fund the expansion this year and that many more of our families in need across the city will benefit.

"The beginning of the school holidays is a joy to so many but creates additional, unwanted pressure to people experiencing food poverty.

"This worthy project will help, in some small way, to reduce some of this stress for families across Glasgow."

Last month TFN told how a public plea for action to feed children affected by holiday hunger in Ayrshire had been successful following the project taking off in Glasgow.  

South Ayrshire Council announced it would act following a petition demanding something be done to make sure kids have nutritious meals outwith term-time.

Children in Scotland chief executive Jackie Brock said: “We’re proud to be working with schools in Glasgow and West Dunbartonshire over the summer as part of this growing project.

“FFF demonstrates the fantastic assets our local communities possess, and how they can draw on their strengths to improve experiences for children and families over the summer holiday period – a time that we know can bring real difficulties.”