More than 7,000 free school meals being provided to children on a weekly basis

Around 7,200 packed lunches are being provided to children eligible for free school meals on a weekly basis in Bridgend county borough during the coronavirus outbreak.

The measure is part of the local authority’s emergency mobilisation plan during the pandemic.

Around 270 catering service staff are working across the county borough to provide the packed lunches with specialist medical diets or religious dietary requirements being adhered to by request.

The system sees an average of 1,400 pupils receiving a sandwich, a piece of fruit, a cake and bottled water on weekdays while schools are closed.

Families are collecting the packed lunches from 23 local schools.

The Leader, Cllr Huw David, said:

“Pupils and/or parents are requested to collect the meals themselves as we are only able to consider delivery of the packed lunches if there is a specific request due to a clear inability to collect, whether that is due to a medical reason or another issue.

“We are carrying out deliveries to around 320 pupils eligible for free school meals daily.

“If you’re able to collect the meals, you must collect them so we can ensure there are enough staff to deliver to those who need it.

“This is part of a huge operation we have put in place during these very challenging times and we want to say a big thank you to our dedicated staff who have ensured it is carried out.                    

“Our main purpose is to support the most vulnerable as best we can in rapidly changing circumstances.”