Hampshire’s eligible vulnerable children will receive food vouchers this October half term (25-29 October), thanks to further funding provided to the County Council by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), and approval from Hampshire County Council’s Executive Lead Member for Children’s Services, Councillor Roz Chadd.
At her Decision Day on 18 October, Councillor Chadd approved the recommendation to grant £591,810 funding to schools, colleges and early years settings, for the purchase of one £15 voucher per child for the one week October half term holiday. The grant is part of a wider funding allocation of more than £7 million to Hampshire County Council by the DWP’s COVID Household Support Fund, to support households in the most need with food, energy and water bills during the autumn and winter.
Councillor Chadd said: “I am pleased that we are once again able to help vulnerable and low-income families during the school holidays. Our aim is to help ensure children and young people do not go without basic necessities, and have the support they need to remain nourished and well throughout the colder months.
“We will be working at pace to provide schools, colleges, and early years education providers with their share of this funding, so that they can purchase and provide one £15 voucher per child ahead of the October half term holiday next week.”
The £15 food vouchers will be provided for:
- All families whose children are eligible for free school meals
- All children open to early help services
- All children who have a social worker
- All 2-4 year olds accessing childcare and eligible for Early Years Pupil Premium.
- All 16-18 year olds previously eligible for free school meals
The scheme will be organised through the ‘connect4communities’ programme, which is led by Hampshire County Council, in collaboration with community partners such as schools, colleges and Early Years providers, as well as voluntary and charity organisations.