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Food Poverty

Anyone can find themselves and their family in need of help for lots of different reasons. If you are struggling to feed your family, you can get help from a local foodbank, or use a community fridge. 

Most food banks will provide three days’ emergency food and support to those in need. To use some foodbanks you will need a voucher from a local support agency. Once you have a voucher, it can be taken to a nearby foodbank to be swapped for a food parcel.

Other foodbanks you can contact yourselves for support. Have a look at their website to check if a voucher is needed. 

  • Foodbanks are joint up with a wide range of professionals such as; doctors, health visitors, social workers, children's centres and police to identify people who need more help and issue them with a foodbank voucher. 

    If you are struggling and need some help from a foodbank, you can ask any of these services for a voucher. 

  • When you take a voucher to the local foodbank, it will be used to get a food parcel.

    Volunteers who run the foodbanks will make the parcel for you while you wait. They will make your parcel bigger according to the number of adults and children written on your voucher. They try and give you foods that are age appropriate. Some food banks are also able to offer baby foods. 

    Foodbanks can signpost to other services who may able to support if there are longer-term problems.

    Have a look at the map below to find a foodbank near you.

  • A food parcel will contain at least three days of nutritionally balanced food. This could include:

    • breakfast cereal
    • soup
    • pasta
    • rice
    • pasta sauce
    • baked beans
    • tinned meat
    • tinned vegetables
    • instant mash
    • Milk
    • tea
    • coffee
    • sugar
    • biscuits 

    Foodbanks will try and change your parcel to suit allergies or dietary needs including; people with diabetes, vegetarians and those who are gluten free.

    Some foodbanks can also add nappies or baby food to the parcel if needed. Speak to the foodbank volunteers when you arrive to see if they can help with this. 

     

  • Food and Fun in the School Holidays (FISH)

    FISH is a service run by some foodbanks. It is for all children who get free school meals during term time. The scheme feeds and entertains children for free during school holidays.

    For more information you can Email:

    fish@norwich.foodbank.org.uk or *Click Here*

    fish@kingslynn.foodbank.org.uk or *Click Here*

     

    Free Packed Lunches

    From 26th July until 30th August, free packed lunches can be collected from The Phoenix Centre, Mile Cross Road, Norwich NR3 2LD - Monday to Friday between 12 and 1.30 pm. These are available for all school aged children. You do not need a referral to access this service and lunches will be handed out with no questions asked.

    Each packed lunch includes;

    • A filled roll
    • A piece of fruit
    • A fruit juice
    • A yoghurt drink
    • A treat

     

  • Community Fridges 

    Community fridges are places in the local community that spare or leftover food can be shared. There are 12 community fridges across Norfolk, with more planned. 

    You can visit the community fridge to see what food is on offer and take anything you need for free.

    Have a look at the map below to find a community fridge near you or *Click Here* for more information.

  • What is Healthy Start?

    Healthy Start is a national scheme to improve health. You could qualify if you're on low income or benefits and are at least 10 weeks pregnant or have a child under the age of four. You also qualify if you're pregnant and under 18.

    Your midwife, health visitor or other health professional can support you to sign up. You will be sent vouchers for cow’s milk, fresh/frozen fruit and vegetables and first infant formula milk. These can be used in local shops or supermarkets. You will also receive vouchers to exchange in pharmacies for:

    • Women’s vitamins (contain Vitamin C, D and Folic Acid) - available from week 10 of pregnancy up to baby’s first birthday
    • Children’s Vitamins (contain Vitamin A, C and D) – from ages 6 months to 4 years

    For families who are not eligible for the scheme, all Norfolk Lloyds Pharmacies sell Healthy Start vitamins at a cheaper price than branded vitamins.

    For more information on the scheme and a list of shops accepting vouchers *Click Here*   

  • All children in Year Reception, 1 and 2 will receive free school meals. 

    From Year 3, children whose parents or carers get one or more of the following may also be able claim free school meals;

    • Universal Credit (provided the family has an annual net earned income of no more than £7,400)
    • Income Support
    • Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
    • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
    • Support under Part 6 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
    • The guarantee element of Pension Credit
    • Child Tax Credit (with no Working Tax Credit) and an annual income of no more than £16,190
    • Working Tax Credit run on – paid for four weeks after a claimant stops qualifying for Working Tax Credit

    To apply for free school meals you will need to fill out a form, this will be available at your child's school. 

    For support you can contact the Free School Meals Team on 01603 222518 or by email at admissions@norfolk.gov.uk.

  • OLIO is a free app that lets you search your area for spare food.

    *Click Here* for more information or search the app library for OLIO. 

     

    Too Good To Go lets you search your local area for restaurants or cafes that are giving away bundles of food at a cheaper price. 

    *Click Here* for more information or search the app library for Too Good to Go.  

Foodbank and Community Fridge Map

Who Can Help?


For more information or support you can contact the Healthy Child Programme by calling Just One Number on 0300 300 0123 or texting Parentline on 07520 631590. Our opening hours are 8am-6pm Monday-Friday (excluding bank holidays) and 9am-1pm on Saturdays.

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