'Summer Foodpacks - A Helping Hand' scheme aims to help more families in need
Updated: Jul 3
This summer, we’re pleased to be able to give even more support to vulnerable families in our community, with free food packs provided over the holidays to secondary school age children. Together with Allerdale Borough Council, Copeland Borough Council and Cumbria County Council, who are giving vital funding, the ‘Summer Foodpacks – A Helping Hand’ scheme will provide food packs to families with children in Years 7 to 11 across Allerdale and Copeland who are already eligible for free school meals. The much-needed scheme will run in addition to our ‘Lunchpacks 4 Kids’ scheme, which supports primary and junior school children, and aims to make sure no child or young person in the community goes hungry over the summer holidays.
Unfortunately, North Lakes Foodbank has seen a sharp rise in the number of children and families coming to the centres for support during the last 12 months, a trend that is echoed across the Trussell Trust network. The continuing coronavirus pandemic is putting many families under pressure, including those who may not have had to use the foodbank before. Eligible families will still receive the free school meal vouchers provided by the school, so the Summer Foodpacks will be an additional helping hand making sure there is enough food on the table over the six-week break. The packs are designed to feed up to two children aged 11 to 16 and will consist of non-perishable food that could be eaten as a lunch or dinner. If we have enough food stocks, we hope to be able provide extra food items such as cereal.
Over the coming weeks, eligible families will be contacted by their school with full details of the scheme and provided with a voucher. From Monday 20th July, they will be able to visit one of our 6 foodbank centres and exchange the voucher for a free food pack. The foodbank centre will keep the voucher, with families coming back into the centre each week over the course of the six-week break to collect their food pack.
The scheme is only possible with the support of the Councils, our generous community and our lovely foodbank volunteers. It is hoped that in excess of 2,200 bags of food will be packaged, with the parcels supporting around 600-700 children. A great example of community support for those who are most in need!