Council Offers Free School Meals £35 Cash Option

Dumfries and Galloway Council say they are committed to supporting families during the Covid-19 crisis and is extending its options for free school meals with an option for a direct cash payment.

The cash payment will be £35 every 2 weeks for each child, allowing families the flexibility to make their own arrangements best suited to them and their child.

The £35 payment is one of the highest amount offered by Councils in the UK.

The Council has already provided more than 70,000 free school meals to 1,700 households

Council Leader Elaine Murray said: “We’re aware that people are currently having to deal with extremely challenging circumstances and our Council is doing all that we can to help and support them through the Covid-19 crisis. Extending our criteria for free school meals and offering a cash option will greatly reduce the pressures on many people and ensure that their children receive a nutritious meal each day.”
Depute Leader Rob Davidson said: “It’s vital that children are fed and that they continue to eat healthily during the Covid-19 crisis. Our Council is determined to reduce the stresses and pressures on hard-pressed people in our region. Our cash option for our free school meals will ensure that many local families have one less thing to worry about.”

Families now have 3 options for free school meals:
Option 1: Cash payment of £35 every 2 weeks (£17.50 a week) for each child
Option 2: Food pack delivered to home
Option 3: Collect food pack from a Community Hub

People choosing option 1 [cash payment] must register, see: https://supportdg.dumgal.gov.uk/CV19schoolmeals

The first payments will be made on Friday 8 May. Meals will continue for collection/delivery until Tuesday 12 May. Payments will continue to be made once a fortnight until either the schools return or the end of term.

New applications received after 5 May will be processed every Wednesday and payments made each Friday.

The Joseph Rowntree Foundation, one of the main research bodies on poverty describe putting cash direct to families as ‘one of single biggest leavers for addressing child poverty’.

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