Peterborough food voucher scheme extended into summer holidays.

A scheme which provides food vouchers for families of children receiving free school meals in Peterborough has been extended into the summer holidays.

Wednesday, 21st July 2021, 4:35 pm
Schools. Pic Danny Lawson/PA Wire EMN-210907-123917001

The vouchers – which will automatically be sent to eligible families – is a continuation of the scheme which operated in previous school holidays and half term breaks.

However, the level of funding from the Government has been reduced to less than half the original Christmas holiday grant, so the scheme has been revised accordingly for the summer holidays.

Two £30 supermarket vouchers will therefore be issued – the first by July 23 followed by a second by August 13.

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The vouchers will be sent by email and text to the nominated parent or carer. The vouchers do not need to be used in a single shopping trip and once claimed will last for at least a year.

Year 6 pupils will receive vouchers from their primary school, while eligible Year 11 and Year 13 students will receive a voucher even though they have left school.

The supermarket vouchers will be allocated to parents / carers whose child or children meet the following criteria:

• Funded Childcare and Education for 2-year-olds under the income-based criteria (children aged 2)

• Early Years Pupil Premium under the income-based criteria (children aged 3 and 4)

• Eligible for Free School Meals in Primary and Secondary schools (children and young people aged 4 to 16)

• Students in Sixth Forms eligible for Free School meals (young people aged 16-19)

If a child receives Universal Infant Free School Meals (in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2) but does not meet the criteria for Income-Related Free School Meals, that child will not be eligible for a supermarket voucher during the summer holiday period.

Queries in relation to free school meal entitlement can be emailed to the Education Welfare Benefits Team on [email protected] or by telephoning them on 01223 703200.

As a result of the pandemic, there are many families that may need further support who are eligible for the Direct Food Voucher Scheme. There will also be families who do not meet the above criteria but are in need of support.

Peterborough City Council’s Community Hub is in place to be able to help families access further support. Details can be found at www.peterborough.gov.uk/wintersupport and can be contacted on 0345 045 5219 from Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.

Cllr Lynne Ayres, Peterborough City Council’s Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, Education, Skills and the University said: “I am delighted that we are again able to offer financial help to struggling families in the form of supermarket vouchers, albeit at a slightly lower rate than has been available previously. But these vouchers will still go a long way to helping children and their families cope with the ongoing impact of the pandemic and I know they will make a real difference to those families who need it most.”