Wigan charity's plan to combat child hunger during school holidays

Gabrielle Thompson, who is supporting the Bricks summer campaign to feed hungry children
Gabrielle Thompson, who is supporting the Bricks summer campaign to feed hungry children
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An appeal has been launched to help children in Wigan who are at risk of falling into holiday hunger during the summer school break, when the safety net of free school meals is removed.


Homelessness charity The Brick – which is home to Wigan’s largest foodbank – has started a food drive to help beat school holiday hunger for hundreds of families.

St John Rigby College were representated at The Brick street festival by Georgia Greenall and Lydia-Beth Moorfield

St John Rigby College were representated at The Brick street festival by Georgia Greenall and Lydia-Beth Moorfield

Now they are asking individuals, schools and businesses to get behind the food drive to support youngsters in the borough to have a better summer.

One youngster, Gabrielle Thompson, has been helping to kickstart the appeal, already collecting 126 tins of food for The Brick at a food exchange she held at her school.

The 12-year-old said: “I wanted to show other young people how they can easily help. My food exchange meant that by donating a tin of food, you got a homemade treat in return – which worked really well for everyone!

“I have visited The Brick, and it really showed me how much support the charity needs with food donations. I hope lots of other people can join in.”

The Brick will be holding a food donation drive at Central Park, Montrose Avenue, Wigan, WN5 9XL, on Thursday, July 12 and Friday, July 13, between noon and 6.30pm

Items that are being welcomed include tinned meat and fish, packet meals, tinned desserts biscuits, crisps, sweets, tea and coffee, nappies up to size five, formula milk, and toiletries.

Alice Coren, from The Brick, said: “It’s hard to believe that in Wigan today many children and families go hungry – especially during school holidays when the safety net of school meals is removed.

“The Brick’s Foodbank historically suffers from a lack of food in the summer months and this is when the food is most needed for children.

“This year, we are anticipating an even busier summer period, so please help us to make sure no child goes hungry this summer.”

For more information call Alice on 01942 417290 or email alice@thebrick.org.uk

Meanwhile, a class of BTEC Level 3 Art and Design students showcased their artistic talent at the recent Brick Street Festival.

Working with a real client and deadline, the students’ brief was to create promotional merchandise for a newly opened café and workshop.

The project delivered by The Brick, benefits the local area and provides those in need with crucial skills and a source of employment.

Located within touching distance of Wigan’s historic canal, the bike repair shop and café are perfect for those on a canal-side bike ride. The students promoted the work of The Brickworks and the café by designing their merchandise around the theme of cycling.

T-shirts, mugs, keyrings, postcards, badges and framed artwork were all designed to an excellent standard.

Juliana Charltonova, an Art and Design teacher at the college, said: “I am extremely proud of the students for their efforts. The designs showcase both the importance of The Brick’s project and the artistic talent that we have in abundance here at St John Rigby College.”

More than £100 was raised for The Brick.