One in five children live in food poverty. To help combat hunger’s devastating effects, supermarket Aldi is pledging to donate 10 million meals to families in need in 2021 – working with giving platform Neighbourly, and with the support of Marcus Rashford MBE.
The heart-breaking issue of child food poverty has seen a dramatic increase due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the problem is only expected to get worse, with over nine in ten (94%) charity professionals anticipating that the demand for food provisions to feed hungry children, will continue to rise in 2021.
New research* reveals that charities believe the demand for food provision has increased by as much as 71% in the past six months. Shockingly, 96% of the children they are supporting are missing meals at least once a week, with 42% going without food three times a week and an upsetting 14% of children missing a meal every single day.
To help alleviate the problem, Aldi is pledging to donate 10 million meals to families in need this year. In order to raise further awareness of the issue and encourage people to help tackle it, the supermarket has commissioned a heart-wrenching animation that personifies ‘hunger’ through a child’s eyes, and brings it to life as an ever-present ‘monster’ with damaging effects: https://f.io/IUD-JoLc
The poignant film sees a young child’s relationship with ‘hunger’ in a poem by Giles Andreae. Marcus Rashford MBE, England footballer and campaigner, has partnered with Aldi to narrate the emotional poem, continuing his great work in raising awareness of child food poverty, whilst celebrated illustrator Lisa Stickley brings the story to life through the accompanying animation.
Giles Hurley, Chief Executive Officer at Aldi UK and Ireland, said about the initiative: “At Aldi we’re making it our mission to fight against child food poverty as no child should ever go hungry. Not only are we pledging to donate 10 million meals throughout 2021 to families that need it, this campaign also aims to help raise awareness of the increasing number of families struggling to put food on the table.
“We were delighted for Marcus Rashford MBE to be the voice of the boy, which shows just what an important issue it is to us all.”
Marcus Rashford, said: “Reading the script for the Aldi animation I felt like I was talking about myself 10 years ago. This story is a reality for millions of children so, of course, I was happy to lend my voice. I’m proud to call Aldi a Founding Member of the Child Food Poverty Taskforce. Aldi has continued to take active steps to combat the issue of child food poverty and I would encourage everyone to get involved in their pledge to donate 10 million meals. 2021 is a time to level the playing field once-and-for-all.”
Aldi currently works with Neighbourly – who link businesses to charitable organisations in local communities – to donate its surplus food to local causes. This year, Aldi will extend their partnership further, to help distribute 10 million meals to families affected by hunger.
Neighbourly CEO, Steve Butterworth, said: “We are thrilled to be working with Aldi to further its commitment to supporting local communities and help make a dent in the UK’s hunger epidemic. I know first-hand the vast number of children that rely on our local charity partners in order to go to bed without an empty stomach, and this commitment will go a long way for the families who are struggling to put food on the table.”
Aldi’s 10 million meals pledge launches today (Wednesday, January 13). For more information and to donate visit the Aldi website: www.aldi.co.uk/hunger