Tory MPs voted against the expansion of a program to provide free school meals for eligible children during school vacations, inspired by a memorable campaign by the soccer star of Manchester United and England.
A mother of two has paid tribute to Marcus Rashford’s school feeding campaign for helping her feed her young boys.
Mama Beth Fretwell lost her job and struggled to feed her little boys.
However, an extension was refused, leaving many families feeling insecure about the school vacations.
In June, the government made a dramatic U-turn and announced a one-off fund of £120 million to benefit some 1.3 million children in England during the six-week summer break, after the striker had spoken out and generated enormous public pressure.
“I saw on Tuesday that Marcus had tweeted that the Chesterfield Football Club Community Trust was distributing free lunches. I called and the club told me that there was food waiting for us.
The Mirror reports that 25 year old Beth Fretwell, who lost her job, was unable to buy food for her children after moving to a new home in Chesterfield, Derbyshire.
She explained: “I had to buy beds, a stove and a fridge with a freezer and I had nothing left.
“I can’t afford a carpet yet, but I was so grateful that I tweeted a photo and my thanks.
said Beth: “I was overwhelmed with kindness. The boys loved their lunch. We ate it on the bare floor.
In her tweet, Beth thanked the soccer star and showed a photo of her boys Joshua, seven, and Ashton-Lewis, four, eating their lunches. The Tweet was flooded with hundreds of offers of help from strangers.
The moving message, in which she wrote about “two happy boys who go to bed with a full stomach,” received more than 45,000 Likes and countless offers of help on the social media platform.
The soccer star’s petition to help at-risk children get free meals during school vacations has received one million signatures.
Manchester United striker Marcus, 22, is campaigning for free meals for needy children during the school vacations.
Rashford, who was awarded an MBE for his work on behalf of hungry children, has called for a three-pronged approach to helping children during the school vacations.
However, Tory ministers have refused to provide additional aid over the halfway point, which began this week, including vouchers worth £15 a week, as they did earlier this year.
The campaign on Parliament’s website passed the milestone today, two weeks after the English footballer launched it.