UN humanitarian agency UNICEF will provide emergency funding to help feed children and families in the UK.
For the first time in its 70-year history, the agency will provide more than £700,000 in grants to different projects across the UK.
Director of Church Action on poverty, Niall Cooper, told Premier the UK government and communities should take this announcement as a clear warning.
“We’d normally associate UNICEF with coping with natural disasters, hurricanes, earthquakes in other parts of the world. So, the fact that they’ve considered it sufficiently severe here, the impact of covid on people’s access to food, and particularly children’s access to food, should be a wakeup call to us.”
The coronavirus pandemic has pushed many people into poverty and food insecurity. Earlier this year, the Food Foundation estimated 18 per cent of 8 to 17-year-olds reported experiences of food insecurity over the summer holidays. In October, they released new figures showing that one million children had signed up for the first time to the Free School Meals government scheme.
The agency will fund food projects in over 30 communities across the UK until February next year. London-based charity School Food Matters will receive a £25,000 grant that will help provide over £20,000 in breakfasts during the Christmas holidays.