School breakfast packs fuel home-learning for 390 children
published on 26 Feb 2021
- Demand for food doubles in six weeks
The Salvation Army corps (church) in King Edward Street, Nottingham is part of a local effort to supply breakfast packs to children and their families via local schools.
The number of schools being helped has grown from three to ten, since the operation began in mid-January and now feeds over 390 children in the last week. The initial operation served 90 families.
Leader of The Salvation Army city centre corps, Major Robert Jepson said: “Although schools will be reopening on 8 March, we know that many families will still be in need of emergency food as people struggle with loss of employment and higher costs of living with children studying at home over the last two months. These are people living on the margins, who may have to decide between heat or food”.
The Salvation Army are working with Supporting Arms Feeding Everyone (SAFE) and Guru Nanak Mission to help supply food for family breakfasts, so that children can enjoy a full breakfast, ready for learning at home. The initiative started with the Djanogly Learning Trust schools and expanded to include other schools from the area, providing breakfast packs to 179 families, with 390 children being fed in the last week.
Major Robert said: “We have worked with SAFE over the last several years to get hot meals out to rough sleepers and to keep them warm during the winter months.
“However, the need of families is stark and apparent. We still have generous food donations from local supermarkets and others who want to give to help the local community. Our own food hub in Sneinton has also supplied us food to help families, this need continues to grow, and we will be here to respond to it”.
Deputy head teacher, Lianne Jackson from Djanogly Sherwood Academy said: “I just wanted to say a massive thanks for the lovely food parcels you delivered yesterday and for the treats for the staff, they were definitely well appreciated by everyone”.
Sarah, a family support worker from Sherwood said: “Thank you so much there is so much wonderful food the families are very happy this end”. The Salvation Army would like to thank all the partners involved in the operation that is lifting the burden of coronavirus for so many families at this time.
Schools taking part in the initiative include Djanogly City Academy (Secondary school), Djanogly Sherwood Academy (Primary school) and Djanogly Northgate Academy (Primary school) and Strelley Primary School, all part of the Djanogly Learning Trust. Three more schools in the local area joined the initiative three weeks ago, they are: Nottingham City Academy (primary school), William Booth Primary School in Sneinton and Rosehill School, with Victoria Primary School, Welbeck Primary School and Greenfields Primary School also joining recently.
As the City is multi-cultural with numerous faiths, two types of food packs are being offered, one that is cereal/bread-based and the other rice-based, with accompanying cooking ingredients such as oil and chickpeas for people in Sikh and Muslim households.
The breakfast food is supplied to the local schools in bulk and split into family packs to last a week. Schools invite parents to collect the breakfast packs from their sites, all arranged with social-distancing measures in place. Morrisons, Marks and Spencer and local wholesaler Makro/Bookers have also donated food for the operation, with toiletries donated from Boots and Morrisons and purchased via cash donations from SAFE.
The Salvation Army have set up a Just Giving page for their 2021 community work in the centre of Nottingham.
The corps previously responded to the needs of rough sleepers (last year), teaming up with a local charity to offer hot takeaway food for collection.