Richmond mother-of-four launches Christmas free school meals campaign

A Richmond mother-of-four has launched a fundraising campaign to provide free school meals over the Christmas period.

Children’s writer and part-time Oxford University lecturer Nicky Browne is aiming to raise £85,000 over five weeks to fund free meal vouchers children in the area.

Her campaign “Feed our Richmond kids” or FORK has already raised over £1000 in just one day.

Browne is working with three other local mums, as well as the Vineyard Community Richmond Food Bank and Richmond Council, to achieve her vision of feeding the borough’s pupils.

She said: “You know with Covid everyone is short, but the idea of kids going short is just awful.

“People I know feel really strongly about this and everyone wants this to work.”

The equivalent of 30 double decker buses worth of children qualify for free school meals in Richmond borough.

Browne, 59, and a resident of Richmond borough for 33 years, drew inspiration for the FORK Campaign from the work of footballer Marcus Rashford.

The prominent Manchester United footballer gained traction when his campaign saw the Government bow to pressure to fund school meals over the summer.

But more recently an opposition day motion to revive the initiative for the October half-term was turned down

Browne worries that a combination of deteriorating weather and new strict lockdown restrictions imposed across England could see kids without food over the two week Christmas holiday.

She said: “I’m worried that people may fall through the net.

“This is something that we need to do now.

“Everything we can raise is really useful right now.”

The campaign will issue food e-vouchers in order to give families maximum flexibility to choose food that is right for them over the festive period.

Featured Image Credit: Cheshire East council Flickr

Related Articles