As many as 1.8 million school age children are at risk of hunger in the UK. For one of the richest countries in the world, that is a shocking and worrying statistic. It is a not a situation that should exist, but sadly it does.
It is impossible for a child to thrive, or reach anything like their full potential without proper nutrition – that food affects the brain and body shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. Children who start the day hungry find it hardto concentrate and focus.Why should it be that a poorly fed child has to play classroom catch-up with better fed classmates? Why should a child be held back just because they wake up in a home without food?
That is why Helen Burgess, founder of Little Cooks Co along with Prue Leith, whole heartedly support the work of Magic Breakfast. This incredible charity works tirelessly to ensure that no child in the UK starts the school day too hungry to learn. They help over 40,000 children start their school day in the best possible way, plus a further 280,000 in partnership with Family Action and the Department for Education, via the National School Breakfast Programme.
Prue has long been an advocate for this hardworking charity, and has particularly admired the work of its inspiring founder, Carmel McConnell MBE. She says, “Carmel is a force of nature. She never, ever, stops worrying about children not getting enough good food. And she won’t stop caring, lobbying, persuading and expanding Magic Breakfast until the government does the right thing and feeds children for breakfast and lunch, for free, at school.”
Helen, a former senior advisor in Government turned nutritionist, was determined to find a charity Little Cooks Co could support which understood the powerful connection between food and well-being, and that focussed on offering the best opportunities to children. “There is no greater time in life when it is more important to eat well than in childhood – a child’s rate of development and growth is phenomenal and far greater than at any other time in life”. Since October 2018 Little Cooks Co has donated the cost of a healthy breakfast to Magic Breakfast for every box it sells, meaning it has helped feed 1000s of children.
Little Cooks Co is a monthly recipe box for children with a mission to help children learn to love cooking and eating healthy food with their families. They want to help put cooking back at the heart of the family home. Prue, who has been a huge force for good when it comes to ensuring children have access to cooking classes and education in the UK, believes that teaching young people cooking skills will help to beat society’s ills. She says. “It’s wonderful to see businesses like Little Cooks Co offering fun ways to help families cook and eat together”.