Wales Rolls out Free School Meals During the Holidays
As first announced earlier this year, the Welsh government has been providing free school meals during the summer holidays after putting £500,000 of its education budget into the scheme.
The meals are part of lunch clubs which feature all day activities, primarily targeted at school children living in deprived areas of Wales.
Welsh education secretary, Kirsty Williams, said: “These clubs will offer a positive environment for all our children during the summer holidays, including providing free meals, as well as a range of activities and fun through what can be a long break for some.
“By also involving our universities in the scheme we will also help raise aspirations for children across Wales.”
A report by MPs earlier this year said that up to three million children across the UK risked going hungry in the holidays, while The Trussell Trust recently revealed that demand for food supplies rose significantly during the holidays last year.
Earlier this month, the BBC reported that a foodbank in Swansea run out of supplies, believed to be as a result of the end of the school year and no free dinners for children.
Williams added: “The reality is for some of our young people the school summer holidays can be a difficult time. Children who benefit from free school breakfasts and lunches often miss meals and go hungry once their school closes for the holidays, while the lack of free play schemes and sports activities can have an impact on those from the most disadvantaged backgrounds.”