EMERGENCY FREE MEAL SERVICE WELCOMED BY FIFE MSP

Published date : 23 Apr 2020

Mid Fife and Glenrothes MSP, Jenny Gilruth, has welcomed the Scottish Government announcement that will see community food projects receiving funding to provide emergency free meals to those most in need during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

 

Around £700,000 has been allocated from the £70 million Scottish Food Fund to 19 projects, including a £350,000 grant to the Wheatley Group to provide 8,500 emergency food deliveries to people most in need in 17 local authority areas as part of its own EatWell service over the next three months.

 

A further 18 schemes will share £400,000 to provide emergency food through a range of projects working with minority ethnic households, family support groups or mental health teams.

 

The Food Fund comprises £30 million for food deliveries for the ‘shielded’ groups at highest clinical risk, and a further £30 million to local authorities for free school meals and food support for older people, those with long-term health conditions and pregnant women.

 

The remaining £10 million is for critical third sector and community response organisations, which includes funding so far of £500,000 each for Social Bite, FareShare and Cash for Kids.

 

Commenting on the new emergency meal provision scheme, Ms Gilruth said:

 

“I am pleased to hear about the latest announcement from the Scottish Government that will see community food projects receiving funding to provide emergency food provision to those most in need.

 

“A number of local community food organisations that work to support the vulnerable, or those on a low income, have had to close their doors through no fault of their own due to the Coronavirus outbreak.

 

“Many of these groups, such as the Collydean Community Centre in Glenrothes, have adapted to providing support in alternative ways such as delivering hot meals and providing food parcels locally. I am sure this additional funding from the Scottish Government will go a long way in expanding provision and ensuring none of our most vulnerable are left behind.”

 

The Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Local Government, Aileen Campbell MSP, said:

 

“As part of Scotland’s £70 million Food Fund, we’re making an initial £10 million available to help support community food projects, and these latest grants will help ensure people are not only fed but treated with dignity.

 

“I am very grateful to be working alongside the Trussell Trust, FareShare and other members of the Independent Food Network to provide people at risk in our communities with the basic essentials their families need. I’m particularly pleased that FareShare is now working closely with many councils to strengthen local responses.

 

“The existing close partnership working we already had with these leading food charities has significantly stepped up to ensure people who are in the greatest financial risk as a result of the impact of the pandemic have access to food and basic essentials.

 

“Uniquely among the countries of the UK, the ‘cash-first’ elements of approach mean that where people can safely get out to buy food, we make sure they have access to the cash to do so. This is the most dignified way we can provide food support and we will continue to do all we can to help people overcome any barriers in their way. I am pleased that these charities have welcomed this approach as the most dignified way of supporting people with food insecurity.”

 

ENDS

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