Zayn Malik has written an open letter to British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak pleading for immediate action on free school meals for families on Universal Credit as part of the Feed the Future campaign.
It is estimated that 800,000 children in England are living in poverty and do not currently qualify for free school meals, despite their families struggling amid the cost-of-living crisis.
In the personal letter penned to Mr. Sunak, the global superstar and newly named ambassador for The Food Foundation demonstrated his commitment to tackling Britain’s food poverty, pleading the Government to commit to giving impoverished children free school meals in their 17 November budget.
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As a child who grew up in Bradford, West Yorkshire, who depended on free school meals, Malik is committed to using his platform to call on the Government to support vulnerable children. His new role as a Food Foundation ambassador is part of a long-term commitment to highlight the problem of food poverty.
“The work the Food Foundation do to tackle child food poverty is close to my heart, as I too was one of the children in the UK that relied on programs to ensure I was able to eat,” British musician Zayn Malik said.
“I want the Government to act urgently to ensure that children no longer have to suffer the trauma and stigma of hunger and poverty and can grow up to have healthy and productive lives,” said the singer.
“I am honored to also take on the role of ambassador to help bring vital awareness to this critical issue. My long-term commitment to this work is driven by my families’ own experiences and I feel passionately that every child has a fundamental right to good food. This is a problem that we can all work together to solve.”
Anna Taylor, The Food Foundation’s executive director, said: “Zayn’s music has touched the lives of many millions of people. We are thrilled to be working together on the campaign and that he is becoming an ambassador. His own experiences as a child will resonate with many young people in Britain today whose voices go unheard.”
The news comes as Iceland has declared its support for the Feed the Future campaign which is calling on the government to increase eligibility of free school meals to all families in receipt of Universal Credit or equivalent benefits.