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School holiday food programme gets funding boost

Published: 1 July 2019

We’re giving a £20,000 cash boost to a successful countywide programme which aims to stop children going hungry during school holidays.

The Derbyshire School Holiday Food Programme was set up in 2016 to work alongside schools, children’s centres and district and borough councils to give children nutritious food while off school.

Since then the programme has gone from strength-to-strength, with 31 different projects set up around Derbyshire.

The projects all encourage young people to make healthy food choices by providing a range of breakfasts, packed lunches, snacks and drinks.

There are also a variety of activities ranging from arts and crafts and family reading sessions to games and sports, family cook and eat workshops and dance.

We work closely with UK charity FareShare to hand out surplus food to projects around Derbyshire.

In the last academic year, the School Holiday Food Programme has:

  • supplied 37,113 healthy, nutritious meals to 1,395 children per week during summer holidays
  • supplied projects with enough food to hand out 1,052 food parcels over the Christmas school holiday period
  • supplied projects with 5,030 meals over the Easter school holidays

Our Cabinet Member for Health and Communities Councillor Carol Hart said:

“It’s often overlooked, but when children don’t have the right nutrition, it can really affect their development – both mentally and physically.

“Adding to this, the loss of free school meals during holiday times can cost a family £30-40 extra a week.

“We welcome the new funding – which will allow us to work together with Rural Action Derbyshire and other partners for another year to deliver these vital projects around the county.”

Derbyshire’s School Holiday Food Programme is part of the wider Feeding Derbyshire initiative and is managed by local charity, Rural Action Derbyshire.

Feeding Derbyshire and FareShare are also supporting local volunteers to gain the skills and personal development opportunities required to help them get jobs.

Find more information about the Feeding Derbyshire partnership and Rural Action Derbyshire.