Since April, 5.5 million meals have been distributed throughout weekends and school holidays, according to City Hall.
According to City Hall statistics, almost 3.5 million youngsters from low-income households in the capital received free lunches over the summer break.
Thousands of low-income families have benefited from Sadiq Khan’s £3.5 million emergency free holiday meals initiative since it was introduced in April, according to the office of the mayor of London.
According to City Hall, 5.5 million meals have been distributed so far throughout weekends and school breaks.
According to a recent YouGov survey conducted on behalf of City Hall, 24% of parents or caregivers with children under the age of 18 are “financially struggling.” Of these, 60% report that they are “just about managing” (36%), “having to go without their basic needs and/or relying on debt (8%), or “struggling to make ends meet (16%).
With the commencement of the mayor’s free school meal program in September, up to 287,000 primary school students attending state schools in London will be eligible for free school dinners.
According to City Hall, in the midst of the crisis caused by the skyrocketing cost of living, this will save families some £440 annually per child.
“It’s shocking that so many Londoners are struggling to feed their families due to the rising cost of living,” stated the mayor, who was raised on free school meals. For this reason, I have guaranteed that all primary school students attending London’s state schools will get free school meals this year, and I have allocated more than £3.5 million in emergency funds to assist hundreds of thousands of Londoners in providing for their families throughout the weekends and school vacations.
“I’m incredibly proud that, since April, over 5.5 million free holiday meals have been provided to Londoners, with over 3.5 million of those meals being served during the summer break alone. However, more has to be done to support this effort.
“As we work to create a more equitable city for all, I will keep doing everything in my power to help Londoners in need, but I implore the government to take action and utilize all of its resources to guarantee that no child goes hungry.”
“We understand that so many parents felt really worried about how they would afford to feed their children during the long summer break,” said Charlotte Hill OBE, CEO of The Felix Project. Support services like food banks, pantries, and holiday programs are always busy over the holidays. We are aware that these organizations are already overburdened, and every organization we assist is in critical need of food; currently, there are over 650 organizations on our waiting list.
“We are thrilled that we were able to assist in delivering this amazing quantity of meals over the summer break, which will have greatly aided so many during these trying times, thanks to the Mayor of London’s support.”
“While I welcome more children having access to free school meals this year, the reality is that many lower income families will be hit hard by a 57% increase in Sadiq Khan’s Council Tax since 2016 and his £12.50 daily ULEZ charge,” stated Emma Best AM, a City Hall Conservatives health spokesperson, in a previous statement.
Secondary school students have been entirely overlooked by this one-time offer, which means that lower-income parents of older children are footing the bill for younger children from wealthier families.
“The mayor ought to concentrate on the most vulnerable students in all schools if he truly wishes to assist the poorest families.”