Worrying numbers of primary kids being fed by foodbanks

Children foodbanks

​Increase in number of very young children relying on foodbank handouts 

26th July 2017 by Robert Armour 0 Comments

Children are increasingly relying on foodbanks to be fed, worrying new figures have revealed.

The UK’s biggest foodbank charity has released figures showing half of the children needing help from its network of foodbanks last summer were in primary school while more than a quarter were under the age of five.

The Trussell Trust said 67,500 three-day emergency food packages went to children in July and August 2016 – 4,000 more than in the preceding two months.

Samantha Stapley, operations manager at the Trussell Trust, said the research showed how close to crisis many families are.

“As a nation, we must address the reasons why families with children are referred to food banks in the first place,” she said.

“We welcome the government’s decision to maintain free school lunches for children during term time – the next step must be to help families during the holidays.”

Several schools in Scotland have opened over the summer months to feed school-aged children to help low income parents.

The Trussell Trust said the proportion of primary school children helped by food banks was consistently high all year round, with 46% of the children referred in the year to March aged between five and 11.

The charity said it was offering extra help to families this summer, with additional services including a holiday club.

Trained volunteers will talk to parents to understand why they are struggling and offer support.