Gainsborough school is providing free lunch hampers for its home learners

A Gainsborough school is working hard to ensure children who are home learning do not miss out on a free school meal.

Katie Barry, headteacher at St George's Church of England Primary School, said: “We have been providing lunch hampers for those children who are home learning who would normally be eligible for free school meals. We also provide likewise for Benjamin Adlard Community School as we are their regular catering provider.

"However, because the pandemic has also affected many of our working families, we decided to offer these lunch hampers for any of our St. George’s families who felt they needed one, regardless of their benefits status.

"We believe that hungry children cannot learn and, therefore, we have tried to ensure that our lunch hampers reflect quality and quantity.

The school provide hampers for approximately 230 children per week

"The government’s late decision around food hampers meant that staff had to go to the supermarkets themselves last week to ensure we had all the stock we needed.

"We have provided these hampers for approximately 230 children per week so it has been a massive undertaking.

"I am very proud of the staff for all the extra time and effort they have put in. They are still cooking hot meals for all the children who are in school here and at Benjamin Adlard.

"From next week, we are moving across to the national voucher scheme.

"In addition to this, every week we put on a free food stall every Friday for our families and those from any other Gainsborough schools.

"The food is provided by the FareShare Charity and each week we get 880kg of stock that we give straight back out to the families.

"The quality of the food has been amazing throughout and our families have been delighted with these free items and we know it has been of great assistance during these tricky times.

"We have been fortunate to secure funding from local charities including Lincolnshire Co-Op and West Lindsey District Council which has helped to cover the costs of this initiative. We are committed to providing this service until the end of the academic year, at least.

"It is a difficult time for families right now and we are just trying to do whatever extra we can to help them.”

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