Parenting website Netmums and London charity Kids Company have joined forces to launch Mobiles for Meals, a campaign designed to help stem the increasing numbers of children going hungry in Britain’s capital.
According to a survey by Netmums, nearly one quarter of the 1,116 users questioned knew of a child in their area who may be going hungry.
In the last year alone, London-based Kids Company reported a 200% increase in the numbers of vulnerable children using their services.
17,000 children currently visit the Kids Company centre for regular food and accommodation. 8000 severely traumatised children visit the centre for counselling and 2000 a week rely on the charity for their main meal.
The average attendee is 10 years old.
Despite these deeply troubling figures, the government has reported a 2% decrease in the number of children living in houses classed as below the poverty line.
However, children’s charity Unicef has warned that impending government cuts could reverse any progress made on tackling child poverty in the UK.
Kids Company founder Camila Batmanghelidjh, said: “We are seeing a lot more children struggling to get hold of food. We have kids who were so starving they stole frozen meat from a flat they visited and they ate it raw. We’re seeing effectively responsible parents who are just not managing to have food in the house.”
She added that, because young children do not have a sufficient public voice, external action needs to be taken to provide support for them.
Public figures working to provide awareness for the Mobiles for Meals campaign include Eamonn Holmes, Natalie Cassidy, Alan Yentob and Jeremy Kyle.
The campaign cannot reach its £1 million fundraising target without enough mobile phone donations from the public. If you would like to help out then you can take your old mobile phone to any T-mobile or Orange shop and express your wish to donate it to the Mobiles for Meals campaign.
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