Kettering Co-op staff make lunchboxes for children during half-term
The staff have clubbed together to provide the lunches
Staff at a Co-op in Kettering decided they wanted to support local families by providing free lunches this half-term.
Store manager Amy Marsh and her colleagues at Hallwood Road Co-op decided to club together and fund lunch boxes for those in need.
They have put together boxes with rolls, yoghurts, cereal or chocolate bars, crisps and a piece of fruit. The staff have funded the initiative themselves.
A Central England Co-op spokesman said: "It is fantastic that the team at our Hallwood Road Food Store have decided to do this for their local community, showcasing their true co-operative spirit to support families in these uncertain times.
"Central England Co-op works closely with food banks across its trading area, including Kettering Food Bank, to create free meals for kids and it has donation points in store for local food banks every day of the year.
"All you have to do is nip in, donate an item or two and we will help create free healthy meals for children."
Co-op stores across the area accept food donations as part of their work with food banks, but Hallwood Road Co-op's lunchboxes was something the staff decided to do themselves.
Businesses across Northamptonshire have been offering help to make sure children do not go hungry over half-term after the Government blocked a bid to extend the £15-a-week food voucher scheme for 1.4m English children over the school holidays.
All seven Northamptonshire MPs voted against the free school meals extension but businesses across the county, like staff at Hallwood Co-op, have stepped in to support children.
You can read more about other businesses who are offering free meals here.
Other community groups and businesses offering to help families include Deb's Fish Bar in Wellingborough Road, Rushden. There will be free portions of sausage and chips or fishcake and chips for those who normally get free school meals.
Deb's Fish Bar is open Monday to Thursday 4pm to 6pm and Friday noon to 2pm to help with free school meals.
Elsewhere in Rushden, RUSH 2The Den will have 20 free children's packed lunches provided by Mrs Bs in conjunction with Wollaston Therapy Centre for children entitled to free school meals. They will be available at 11.30am from RUSH 2The Den and you can book a lunch in advance here.
You can also pre-book a hot meal here thanks to support from local supermarkets including Morrisons, Waitrose, Asda and Co-op.
There is also support available from Rushden Foodbank on Tuesday and Thursday mornings from 10am to 12.30pm at Full Gospel Church and Community Centre at 60 High Street South, Rushden, NN10 0QX.
If anyone would like to make food donations in Rushden, they can donate at Rushden and Higham Rugby Club and the food will then be distributed to local food banks.
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