KINGSMEAD Primary headteacher Catriona Stewart has appealed to parents to turn to the Mid Cheshire Foodbank if it is needed during the summer holidays.

Ms Stewart, who is a referrer for the Mid Cheshire Foodbank, which covers Northwich and Winsford, has urged parents to not think twice about using the extra help.

Ms Stewart said: “With the long summer holidays, families who usually are just about managing can find the additional costs of feeding and entertaining children a real worry. I am a referrer for the foodbank and can issue vouchers.

“Please do come and see me for a confidential chat and I can issue you a voucher. If you have a friend with children in school who may not read my posts who might be in need of support please let them know to come and see me.

“If you haven’t been to a foodbank before and are worried or embarrassed please don’t be - all sorts of people are using foodbanks these days including many people in work. The staff there are lovely and want to help you over a difficult time. Your child or children will have a happier holiday too if a bit of stress can be relieved a little.

“No one other than me knows who I issue vouchers to - it is totally confidential. Please don’t be embarrassed and please don’t hesitate to ask.”

Ms Stewart says that she urges parents to use the foodbank, particularly in summer holidays, due to her own experiences growing up.

Ms Stewart added: “I grew up on free school dinners and my mum and dad dreaded the summer holidays because they didn’t know how they were going to feed me – they just couldn’t afford the extra expense.

“People do tend to presume that just because you live in a particular area, you won’t have issues like that, but it can happen. If people are changing jobs and they have to wait longer for their wage – something as simple as that can leave you in a tricky situation.”

Mid Cheshire Foodbank released figures in May showing that the amount of food packages in the past year had increased by 25 per cent – 15 per cent more than the national average.

The issue was raised last week by Weaver Vale MP Mike Amesbury during his maiden address in Parliament.

Mike said: “It seems that those who are most in need in our society are paying the price of a failed austerity programme that has more to do with an ideological drive to shrink the state, while living standards go into reverse gear and the national debt is now more than £1.7 trillion.

“This is not a society that works for everyone.”

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