Mr Field said; “The national fight-back against hunger begins here in Birkenhead. We’re bringing together our churches, charities, schools and supermarkets to get food to those in need and, as importantly, to use this as a way of beginning to deal with the major problems in people’s lives. An important first goal is to make sure no child in the town goes hungry in the next school holiday at Easter. I’ve been overwhelmed by the number of churches and other bodies already helping to overcome poverty in Birkenhead, and they are to be saluted. Feeding Birkenhead is about how we can build on these efforts to form an effective response to hunger in the town.”
A key part to Feeding Birkenhead will involve diverting more good surplus food that would otherwise go to waste from supermarkets’ supply chains to those groups working with people in need. Feeding Birkenhead will also seek to offer activities alongside this food such as cooking courses, budgeting and debt advice, and awareness of relevant benefits and utility schemes to help ensure that people having to rely on food banks need only do so once.
Here at Jammy Toast we think it is a sad indictment of today’s society that anyone is having to rely on food banks. This government is feathering the nests of themselves and their friends and the people less well-off are paying the price for this greed. Hopefully the Feeding Birkenhead project will also campaign to raise awareness of the problems that push individuals and families in the town to the brink of financial ruin while the wealthy prosper.
The current government has increased the bureaucracy of the benefit agencies to the point where the time taken to administer new benefit claims and the release of emergency payments is causing genuine hardship to families. If he really wants to help, Frank Field could not only look at this but also campaign for reforms on low pay and in particular the current crop of zero-hour working schemes. It wouldn’t hurt if he could also throw his weight behind a look at the costs of household essentials to help reduce the need for food banks.
While many MPs will be sitting at home enjoying their festive food in their comfortable homes it would be nice if Frank Field could actually get out there and make a difference to those in need this Christmas!