Barbara has welcomed the announcement by Salford Council that parents of those Salford children who get free school meals are being offered shopping vouchers to help towards the cost of food during the six week summer holidays.
Free school meals guarantee children a healthy, nutritionally balanced meal every day and it can be difficult for parents to find extra cash for lunches during the long school holidays.
This Council scheme means that £30 grocery vouchers will be made available for each Salford child who has free school meals. This should be enough to provide a daily lunch of sandwiches, soup and a piece of fruit for each child.
Parents of children in reception classes and primary school years one and two will need to claim certain benefits to qualify for the food shopping vouchers. Parents of older children who receive free school meals will automatically qualify. For details of the holiday voucher scheme please see: www.salford.gov.uk/healthyholidays
Salford City Council, Salford Community Leisure, local schools and community groups are also drawing up a menu of healthy holiday activities, which include free healthy snacks and lunches.
Families who do not qualify for the free school meal shopping voucher scheme and need short term support to meet basic needs such as baby items, food, gas or electricity or essential furniture may be able to get help from Salford Assist. The scheme can also refer people for help with debt, affordable loans and affordable energy. Last year the scheme helped just under 4,000 Salford residents. For details of Salford Assist please see www.salford.gov.uk/salfordassist