Following a vote in the House of Commons on Wednesday (Oct 21) against providing children with free school meals during the holidays, Wandsworth council have announced a half term support package.
A £10,000 food voucher scheme will be launched to help vulnerable families cover the cost of meals during the October school holiday.
Parents whose children have a social worker or are receiving support from Wandsworth’s children’s services department will be eligible for assistance.
Applicants must contact Council staff and be approved for support before they receive a voucher, which can be redeemed in their supermarket of choice for food only.
Wandsworth’s schools and education spokesman, Cllr Will Sweet, said:
“This new voucher scheme builds on the success of our previous scheme earlier this year and will deliver food for vulnerable children who might otherwise run the risk of missing out on all the nutrition they need.”
The council’s cabinet member for finance, Rory O’Broin, added: “We have happily set aside the funding that’s needed to ensure children from some of our poorest families don’t go hungry this half term.”
Many welcomed the announcement on social media, however stressed that more could be done to end food poverty.
Wandsworth Foodbank tweeted:
“A welcome start from @wandbc but we'd love to see them go further. So far this scheme only helps children with a social worker. It doesn't help all the 5,700+ #Wandsworth children who receive #FreeSchoolMeals. We'd love to see this support extended to all these children!”