Brighton schools pushed to support food banks at harvest festivals

SCHOOLS are urged to use their harvest festivals to increase food bank donations when the cost-of-living crisis hits.

A new Food SOS initiative has been launched to coordinate harvest festivals and encourage schools to help out with donations ahead of the winter price crunch.

The program aims to tackle food poverty in Brighton and Hove, where more than 5,000 people use food banks and related projects every week, according to the Emergency Food Network.

Damien Jordan, Head of School at Fairlight Primary and Nursery School on St Leonard’s Road, Brighton, said: “The cost of living crisis and the impact it is having on families and children is extremely worrying.

“Kids are regularly giving up basics and parents are giving up basics almost every day so their kids can have some.

“That’s not one or two per school. That’s in the double digits in most classes and schools can only help so far and with so much.”

READ MORE: Brighton and Hove food banks statistics have been released

The Emergency Food Network estimates that nearly 1,000 meals are provided to those in need every week, with fears that more and more families will be forced to choose between heating and eating.

Statistics from the network suggest that the number of people seeking food banks and other similar projects has increased by around 18 percent. Many food banks are also struggling to offset higher demand with a drop in donations of nearly 70 percent.

The Food SOS campaign will help schools by providing resources for organizing fall harvest festivals. Schools can access these either online or in print, and are also designed to be distributed to struggling families.

Tafel use harvest festivals to boost dwindling donationsThe use of boards has increased by around 18 percent

Helen Starr-Keddle, member of the Brighton and Hove Food Partnership, said: “Food SOS will demonstrate how we can support our neighbors through what is for many a difficult and dangerous winter.

“This support is absolutely vital as struggling community projects run out of funds and their dedicated volunteers continue to support vast numbers of people at risk of malnutrition, homelessness and mental and physical health breakdown.”​ Brighton schools pushed to support food banks at harvest festivals

Fry Electronics Team

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