The growing of our own food has become a hot topic in the news recently…but for some it could be an important lifeline.
Despite the UK being the 7th richest country in the world, as food prices and unemployment rise , more and more people are unable to afford adequate food.
The recent World Food Day highlighted the issues and the charity, FareShare, showcased work to distribute food to those who need it most. FareShare provides food to a wide range of charities and community groups across the UK, who then pass the food on to those who are struggling to afford it.
Traditionally, the charity’s focus has been on hunger and malnutrition in developing countries, but it is now turning its attention to the UK.
Much of their work is with charities that support children, from mothers and toddlers groups, to afterschool clubs and breakfast clubs. In 2012 alone, they have seen a 57% increase in schools requesting their assistance in providing food for hungry children at breakfast clubs.
Research carried out by Kelloggs shows that four out of five teachers say their pupils are coming to school hungry. The problem appears to be getting worse as some parents either leave children to fend for themselves or don’t have the time to prepare breakfast or supervise or encourage their children to eat it.
Kelloggs have produced a report ‘No food for thought’ in which more than half the teachers claim that financial hardship is an issue in many of these children’s homes.
Fortunately, FareShare is not the only charity helping those in poverty and there are movements like the Transition Town Network encouraging home-growing of vegetables.
However, the dreadful UK weather this year means that greenhouse growing appears to be the only sure-fire way of ensuring that vegetables and salad grow well with the right amount of watering and correct temperatures.
FareShare is a UK charity fighting hunger and food waste by redistributing quality surplus food from the food industry to a network of community organisations that support vulnerable people.
For further information, see: http://www.fareshare.org.uk/getinvolved/volunteering-in-a-fareshare-depot/