Last week Marcus Rashford has been named as this year’s Postcode Hero for his charitable and campaigning work on food poverty. However the number of people forced to use food banks in England is still increasing.
The England and Manchester United striker marked the award by presenting a cheque for £250,000, raised by People’s Postcode Lottery players, to the Trussell Trust and FareShare.
Rashford, 23, said: “It’s an honour to be named this year’s Postcode Hero but the most important thing to me is the difference these funds will make to families that, for whatever reason or circumstance, are struggling to feed their children.
“FareShare and the Trussell Trust have done an unbelievable job of caring for our most needy during and before this pandemic, and I will continue to support their efforts which have become so vital to many.”
In January Wolves boss Nuno Espirito has spoken of his desire to help people struggling amid the coronavirus pandemic after he donated £250,000 to the Feed Our Pack project.
He said: “It is a project that really is concerned about the needs of the community, especially the community around the area of Wolverhampton.
“The pandemic has affected hugely a big amount of people, and it’s a project that looks to provide food to those who need more, and at the same time, try to engage as many people as possible, people that want to help, people that want to provide a sense of hope for those that are struggling in these tough moments.”
Food bank use
A rise in the use of food banks has been seen across most of England, according to new research in The Guardian that uncovers the pressures on families during the pandemic.
Over nine in 10 district councils, which represent cities, towns and urban areas across England, have reported an increase in food bank use in the past year.
Giles Archibald, the leader of South Lakeland district council and the District Councils’ Network Better Lives spokesperson, said the survey revealed “the devastating toll of coronavirus on households who have struggled to pay the bills, put food on the table, and keep a roof over their heads”.
“The government has stepped in and provided much-needed additional support for families,” he said. “But while this has been welcome, there are serious concerns that if many measures do not continue, many families will be unable to get by. District councils, who have been on the frontline fighting coronavirus, will continue to do everything they can to support households facing hardship.
“However, this needs to be backed up with the continuation of many welfare measures brought in during the pandemic, and support for councils to lead the local effort to create jobs and support families across our towns and cities. Without this many families could face disaster.”