Hertsmere Borough Council’s Executive has agreed an ambitious plan to ensure that every child in the borough who needs a hot meal during the Christmas school holidays will be able to get one for free.
A report laying out details of this new initiative and requesting funds up to a maximum of £10,000 from the council for the transportation and delivery of the free hot meals was considered at last night’s Executive meeting (Wednesday, November 11) and agreed.
There are just over 1,800 Hertsmere children who are eligible for free school meals during term time across the borough.
This project will ensure all those youngsters can access hot food delivered to their area when school isn’t sitting after term ends in December.
The hot nutritious food, with a different menu every day, will be cooked fresh daily at the new state-of-the-art charitable GMSP Akshaya Patra Kitchen in Watford.
The foundation is already working with a number of local authorities in England on similar projects.
Hertsmere Borough Council will now further develop its plans on collection from the kitchens in Watford and delivery within the borough.
Leader of Hertsmere Borough Council, Cllr Morris Bright MBE said: “Whilst the discussions have been continuing about funding of free school meals outside of term time, here in Hertsmere we’ve acted quickly to ensure that families who are struggling financially don’t have to worry about getting a hot meal for their children during the forthcoming Christmas holidays.
“I’m very grateful to the GMSP Foundation and Akshaya Patra for their very generous and proactive offers of support in looking after the borough’s children.”
Ramesh Sachdev, co-founder of the GMSP Foundation, said: “I have lived with my family in Hertsmere for more than 40 years. This country and this borough have afforded me many opportunities. I’m honoured to be able to help fund supported food programmes and I also want to give back to the area that has given so much to me and my family.”