Isle of Wight community steps up to the plate after free school meals vote loses in Parliament

Demand for Isle of Wight emergency food parcels rose by a quarter in the last year, so Islanders have stepped up to help families on low incomes following the Government vote on food vouchers during school holidays

empty plate on blue background

In response to Conservative MPs defeating an Opposition motion to extend food vouchers during school holidays (until Easter) for families on low incomes, communities around the country have stepped up to the plate instead.

The Isle of Wight is no exception, with many organisations across the Isle of Wight ready to help those struggling to make ends meet. They include the Isle of Wight Foodbank, Ventnor Foodbank, Baby Box IOW, West Wight Hub and Ryde Aspire, among many others.

Fish n’ Chip meals
Following yesterday’s news, Charlotte and Mark Kelly, owners of Socialising Buddies (an IW organisation that offers outings for adults with learning disabilities) put their money where their mouths are and donated £500 towards helping to feed Island children over the half-term holiday.

They’ve teamed up with the Happy Haddock in Shanklin and Sandown by donating £500 worth of chips, which the Happy Haddock say they’ll upgrade to a kid’s meal, for children from the local community for the next week.

Kelly: Let’s show how much community spirit we all have
Posting their appeal on Facebook, Charlotte and Mark said,

“In these times where everyone is feeling the pain of Covid-19 we hope that this will help the local community for the second week of October break only.

“If any other businesses would like to support this cause, please do get in touch and can you all please share this far and wide. Let’s show how much community spirit we all have.”

A Just Giving page has been set up with donations already having reached £630.

Demand for IW food parcels up by a quarter in last year
In the summer, Isle of Wight Foodbank reported that demand for food parcels had increased by a quarter in the last year.

Isle of Wight MP Bob Seely, who voted against the motion to extend the scheme during school holidays, told News OnTheWight yesterday,

“There is already substantial additional support for Islanders, such as increased universal credit among other measures, which has already been put in place to help families through this crisis and to ensure children and their families do not go hungry.”

See his full response on yesterday’s report.

Image: pexels under CC BY 2.0

Friday, 23rd October, 2020 3:03pm



Filed under: Island-wide, Isle of Wight News, Top story

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5 Comments on "Isle of Wight community steps up to the plate after free school meals vote loses in Parliament"

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Well done, Socialising Buddies and Happy Haddock for ‘stepping up to the plate’. However, although most of us love chips, they aren’t good for us every day. I hope these children will get more variety in their diet and that all diets, including vegetarian and vegan, can be catered for.


I teally hope that voters will finally tecognise where this governments financial interests really lie. It certainly isn’t with our vulnerable and deprived children but of course , in Toryland they are just a disposable burden on society and reduce the finances available to be siphoned off to well connected private comoanies.


Start a campaign , to get all public servants wages reduced to equal those forced to furlough, the punchline ‘We are all in this together’.

Angela Hewitt

I’m sorry Tamara, but that really is a back-handed compliment to Socialising Buddies and Happy Haddock. I voted your comment down


Seeing as they’re mentioned in the article it’s not a backhanded compliment at all!