Liverpool FC's community programme, Red Neighbours, has delivered hundreds of food hampers in support of vulnerable families struggling throughout the national lockdown.
The delivery, which is part of Red Neighbours’ ‘Breakfast Clubs to You’ initiative, provided families in need with essential food items and some goodies during the May half-term break.
Over the course of the half-term holiday, 220 food parcels were delivered to community centres, school hubs, foodbanks and local charities throughout Anfield and Kirkby areas – each containing enough food to feed a family of five for up to three days.
Food poverty – an issue greater than ever – has been identified as one of the club’s three main pillars of need during the current coronavirus pandemic alongside support for the NHS and key workers, and social isolation.
The Trussell Trust – a charity providing emergency food and support to people living in food poverty – reports that in the first two weeks of the pandemic alone, foodbanks in their network reported an 81 per cent increase in need compared to the same period last year. This equates to more than 6,250 food parcels every day, with close to 3,000 of these required for children.
With some schools still closed, vulnerable families need the help of food donations to feed their children who are at home.
In recognition of this, the Red Neighbours team plans to continue the ‘Breakfast Clubs to You’ service throughout the holidays to support local schools and families.
Jan Berrington, representative of Centre 63 in Kirkby, said: “Centre 63 would like to thank Liverpool Football Club’s Red Neighbours team for their wonderful support to our Food Parcels Project, supporting families in Kirkby who are struggling through these hard times.
“The ongoing support and donations have enabled us to help more families and young people here in Kirkby. The kindness and generosity shown is overwhelming and very much appreciated.”
The breakfast parcels – each containing staple foods such as eggs, cereal, fruit and more – have been distributed and fed up to 1,100 people during this half-term period.
Jen Austin, Red Neighbours co-ordinator, said: “Throughout these testing times, it’s essential now more than ever to support families who are struggling to put food on the table.
“This pandemic has placed hundreds of families into a vulnerable position due to school closures, meaning families must provide more meals for children at home.
“Our team will continue to offer our support throughout this crisis, and we look forward to welcoming back members of our local communities to enjoy breakfast clubs at Anfield in the not-so-distant future.”