Reece James shows how much food can be provided by charity with £30 donation
Chelsea and England defender Reece James has highlighted the difference between the widely criticised £15 Free School Meal parcels and how much food can be provided by a charity with a £30 donation.
A picture revealing the contents of a food parcel with which a family is expected to be fed for 10 days prompted huge outcry when posted on social media earlier this week.
Under the Free School Meals scheme, which was extended by the government last year after a campaign by James' England teammate Marcus Rashford, families are entitled to vouchers worth £30 to purchase food. However, food packages have replaced the £30 vouchers previously given to families. Many believe the value of the food included in these packages (and subsequently given to children at state schools) does not amount to £30.
James has been working closely with The Felix Project in recent months, and tweeted an image of the food package beside a picture of the food provided by the London-based charity with a £30 donation.
'Look at the difference between the two,' he tweeted. 'Unacceptable.'
— Reece James (@reecejames_24) January 13, 2021
Chartwells, the firm which supplied the parcel, has since apologised, while the education secretary said schools will be able to offer vouchers instead of food parcels from next week onwards.
Challenged by Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer during Prime Minister's Questions on Wednesday, Boris Johnson said the images circulated online were "appalling" and an "insult to the families that have received them".
Rashford, meanwhile, has met with Chartwells to discuss the matter and had a phone conversation with the prime minister to express his concerns.