Man Utd star Rashford calls on Government to end child poverty in emotional letter after raising £20MILLION for charity


MARCUS RASHFORD has demanded MPs stamp out the child poverty which is shaming the nation in a personal letter to Parliament.

The Manchester United and England hero opened his heart to draw attention to the growing number of kids who are going hungry – particularly during the pandemic.

And with school meal vouchers set to be stopped over the summer, there is a fear more will suffer.

Rashford, who has raised £20MILLION to feed three million kids a week across Britain through charity Fareshare, said: “The Government has taken a ‘whatever it takes’ approach to the economy – I’m asking you today to extend that same thinking to protecting all vulnerable children across England.

“I encourage you to hear their pleas and find your humanity. Please reconsider your decision to cancel the food voucher scheme over the summer holiday and guarantee the extension.

“This is England in 2020, and this is an issue that needs urgent assistance.

“Please, while the eyes of the nation are on you, make the U-turn and make protecting the lives of some of our most vulnerable a top priority.”

Rashford previously revealed how his family relied on breakfast clubs and free school meals as a child, and does not want other children to miss out.

England had been due to face Croatia at Wembley yesterday in their opening group game of Euro 2020 – which has been postponed for a year due to the pandemic.

In the letter, Rashford added: “This summer should have been filled with pride once more, parents and children waving their flags.

“But, in reality, Wembley Stadium could be filled more than twice with children who have had to skip meals during lockdown – 200,000 children according to Food Foundation estimates.

“As their stomachs grumble, I wonder if those 200,000 children will ever be proud enough of their country to pull on the England national team shirt one day and sing the National Anthem from the stands.

“Can we not all agree that no child should be going to bed hungry?”

Rashford has been tipped for a knighthood and Sports Personality of the Year for his Fareshare work.

But, in his impassioned open letter to all 650 MPs in the House of Commons, including PM Boris Johnson, Rashford insisted so much more needed to be done.

He continued: “Whilst the campaign is currently distributing three million meals a week to those most vulnerable across the UK, I recognise it’s just not enough.

“Food poverty in England is a pandemic that could span generations.

“Whilst 1.3 million children in England are registered for free school meals, one quarter of these children have not been given any support since the school closures.

“From 2018-2019, nine out of 30 children in any given classroom were living in poverty in the UK. This figure is expected to rise by an additional one million.

“Forty-five per cent of children in black and minority ethnic groups are now in poverty. This is England in 2020…”

In his incredibly honest letter, Rashford admitted in Wythenshawe, Manchester – where he grew up – such hardships had been common.

He added: “My mum [Melanie] worked full-time, earning minimum wage to make sure we always had a good evening meal on the table – but it was not enough,” he added.

“We relied on breakfast clubs, free school meals, and the kind actions of neighbours and coaches.

“Food banks and soup kitchens were not alien to us – I recall very clearly our visits to Northern Moor to collect our Christmas dinners every year.

“I am asking you to listen to their parent’s stories as I have received thousands of insights from people struggling.

“Fathers have told me they are struggling with depression, unable to sleep, worried sick about how they are going to support their families having lost their jobs unexpectedly.

“As a black man from a low-income family in, Manchester, I could have been just another statistic.

“Instead, due to the selfless actions of my mum, my family, my neighbours, and my coaches, the only stats I’m associated with are goals, appearances and caps.

“Please, while the eyes of the nation are on you, make the U-turn and make protecting the lives of some of our most vulnerable a top priority.”


About Author

Leave A Reply