Rashford plea leads to U-turn on meals

Marcus Rashford. Photo: Action Images via Reuters/Tony O'Brien/File Photo

Herald.ie Sportsdesk

Proud Marcus Rashford said "families have one less thing to worry about" after his campaign to extend the children's food voucher scheme into the summer holidays led to a Britiah government U-turn.

Rashford wrote an open letter to MPs this week urging the Government to reverse its decision not to award free school meals vouchers in England - for which nearly 1.3 million children are eligible - outside of term time.

The Manchester United and England forward followed that up with an impassioned article in The London Times yesterday, detailing his experience of growing up using food banks and receiving free meals as a child.

And the British prime minister's official spokesman said: "Owing to the coronavirus pandemic the prime minister fully understands that children and parents face an entirely unprecedented situation over the summer.

"To reflect this we will be providing a Covid Summer Food Fund. This will provide food vouchers covering the six-week holiday period. This is a specific measure to reflect the unique circumstances of the pandemic.

"The scheme will not continue beyond the summer and those eligible will be those who already qualify for free school meals."

Reacting to the news, Rashford wrote on Twitter: "Just look at what we can do when we come together, THIS is England in 2020."

The striker followed that up by saying: "To all MPs. This was never about me or you, this was a cry for help from vulnerable parents all over the country."