How Norwich is backing Marcus Rashford’s free school meal campaign
- Credit: Sid Frisby
From gestures of good will to protests and public money, Norwich is answering the call of England international footballer Marcus Rashford to prevent children going hungry over the school holidays.
After the government voted against proposals to extend free school meal vouchers in the holidays to Easter 2021, the Manchester United striker rekindled his campaign from the summer which successfully brought about a u-turn from Westminster in June and saw him made an MBE for his efforts.
And has latest efforts have earned the support of Norwich City Council, which has pledged to donate £10,000 to charitable causes helping to provide for hungry children in the city area.
The Labour-run council has promised to pump the five-figure sum into existing food networks in the city, splitting the funding between various organisations which already distribute emergency food parcels and similar offerings.
Gail Harris, the council’s deputy leader, said: “This money will be given to an established network of charitable and voluntary food providers across the city to put towards the cost of providing free meals, outside of the school term, to those eligible for free school meals.
“We wanted to take this opportunity to play our part in ensuring those most in need are given access to food during the half term break.”
Elsewhere in the city, foodbanks have seen a rise in donations as a result of the campaign, with one in particular having received more than £900 in donations over the weekend alone following the government’s decision.
You may also want to watch:
Karen Davis, a city councillor who helps run the NR2 foodbank in Norwich, said: “The level of generosity we have had is just incredible, we’ve been able to send out £980 of Aldi vouchers to people who need our help and are doing everything we can to make sure no child goes hungry.”
Meanwhile, protesters left a crystal clear message to the government outside of the Christ Church Centre on Magdalen Road in the city - the headquarters of the Norwich Conservative group.
- 1 County welcomes tankers but motorists continue to queue for fuel
- 2 Norfolk wakes up to empty pumps – despite assurances of ‘ample fuel stocks’
- 3 Q&A: All you need to know about fuel shortages
- 4 Delays on roads as petrol queues continue
- 5 Huge seaside home with indoor pool for sale for £600,000
- 6 Weird Norfolk: Is Diss Mere the waterlogged crater of an extinct volcano?
- 7 Can you spot yourself at Let's Rock Norwich?
- 8 Concern raised over work on anaerobic digestion plant on outskirts of village
- 9 A11 to undergo 18 months of roadworks
- 10 Revealed: Where most parking tickets have been issued in Norfolk
On Wednesday, dozens of empty plates were left outside of the building bearing messages of support for the striker’s campaign, calling on the government to reconsider its decision.
For information about the food network, visit www.lumi.org.uk/covid-19