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Cardinal Nichols launches appeal at Borehamwood Foodbank

3rd March 2019

Tackling food poverty and food insecurity

Ahead of the start of Lent, His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Head of the Catholic Church in the UK and Ireland, chose Borehamwood Foodbank to launch his annual Lenten Appeal, which this year focuses on the problem of food poverty and food insecurity.

At the same time, he announced the launch of a new food relief initiative across the Diocese of Westminster. The initiative will look to expand the work already being done in a number of parishes and schools to alleviate food poverty and food insecurity. 

About his Appeal

He chose the issue because food poverty and food insecurity are a reality for many across the Diocese of Westminster. Teachers in diocesan schools are aware of children who attend each day with little or no food, many of whom are ashamed to enrol for free school meals. Twenty-four parishes in the Diocese already run foodbanks with partners in their local communities; another 30 parishes support direct food aid; and 56 parishes help other foodbanks in their areas.

 The new initiative to be launched across the Diocese has three aims:

  1. Direct relief of food poverty by providing sufficient food to address the issue of hunger. Building on existing initiatives, it will provide additional locations for providing food to those in need.
  2. Enabling food security and resilience through additional skills and resources, such as signposting people towards services and training available, to help them move beyond foodbanks into independence.
  3. Education and advocacy to generate greater awareness of the systemic causes of food poverty and how individuals and parishes can become involved in alleviating some of these causes at the local level and campaigning for change nationally.

The initiative will be rolled out through schools and parishes, beginning around the seven existing Caritas hubs, and gradually expanding throughout the Diocese.

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