Recycling Lives' new partnership to provide free breakfasts for school children

Recycling Lives’ food charity has teamed up with Lancashire County Council to provide free breakfasts to schoolchildren in Burnley and Pendle.

The local authority is set to become a member of the Food Redistribution Centre, which will provide food and goods for schools in East Lancashire to ensure every child starts the schoolday with a good meal.

Recycling Lives’ Jeff Green, manager of the Food Redistribution Centre, said: “We’re really pleased to be able to support the County Council to provide meals that will give children the best possible start to their schoolday.

“We already work with a number of schools and youth-focussed community groups and know the real benefits of providing healthy, good quality meals to children and young people in aiding concentration, improving social skills and much more.

“The goods which will be provided are fresh and in-date, but would have been destined for landfill – this is a win-win for communities, reducing food waste and addressing health and wellbeing inequalities.”

Lancashire County Council plans to pilot the scheme in Burnley and Pendle from September of this year, working to provide breakfasts and also advice to parents on the importance of healthy eating.

County Councillor Azhar Ali, cabinet member for health and wellbeing, [pictured above (centre) with centre manager Jeff Green and head of charity Neil Flanagan] said: “It’s shocking that children in classrooms across the county are missing out on the very foundations of their education by not being fed in the morning.

“There is no doubt that this lack of food affects their performance and concentration. This scheme would certainly help by providing schools with free food to give pupils for breakfast.

“Thank you to Recycling Lives for supporting the pilot scheme in Burnley and Pendle.”

The Food Redistribution Centre, run by Recycling Lives in partnership with charity FareShare, provides fresh, in-date food, which would otherwise have gone from supermarkets or suppliers to landfill, to charities and organisations working with disadvantaged communities.

It already works with a number of Burnley- and Pendle-based organisations, including the Bean Good Coffee Shop and Burnley Emmaus.

Launched in October 2015, the Food Redistribution Centre has redistributed more than 750,000 meals to date, diverting 331 tonnes of food from landfill and providing around 10,000 meals a week which feed 5,000 people via charities, community groups and schools.