Summer time isn’t a holiday punctuated with ice cream for more than 600,000 London children who face five weeks of gruelling poverty as their families struggle to feed them.
For the majority of these children school is not just a place of learning but also a haven of security and the only place where enjoying warmth and food every day is possible.
Five south west London charities are working to combat food poverty with the Summer Give campaign, run by the Childhood Trust.
The Kids Co, Reaching Higher, The South London Gallery and Dawliffe Hall Educational Foundation, are joining the campaign to support such children and their families.
Founder Lisa Gagliani explained that over 40% of the country’s poorest children live in London and the capital has the highest concentration of children in poverty in Europe.
She told SWL: “You can blame politics all you like, or druggie parents who don’t work for children left to go hungry, but it simply isn’t true.
“Many of these families are working poor – people who simply cannot earn enough in the city to afford exorbitant rents and who may not be eligible for ever decreasing amounts of benefits.
“Often these families have illness or a lack of support and no matter what the cause it is never the child’s fault.”
Ms Gagliani is passionate about how both the Summer Give and the charities next campaign, Summer Smiles, are actively alleviating poverty for London’s poorest children.
“It is a known fact that children, who experience a wasted childhood, become unhappy adults requiring considerable state intervention,” she said.
“In many ways creating a happy child is an investment in the future of the whole country, so whatever your feelings, ensuring each child receives a chance to thrive is an investment in a stable economic future”.
The one week Summer Give, which ran last week, was a huge success, meaning that the five south London Charities will receive a share of £527,000 raised.
This phenomenal fundraiser made £27,000 more then was aimed for, and the extended campaign, called Summer Smiles, hopes to give even more.
Hosted at the local giving website, the campaign will run for 3 weeks throughout June 2015.
It works by the Childhood Trust randomly matching 500 x £10 donations, which will be split across 40 London charities.
The money is split between each of the charities involved across London, with each getting a chance to have your donation doubled.
Picture courtesy of Elana’s pantry, with thanks