Families who are eligible but have not yet claimed their free school meal vouchers for the Christmas period are being urged to apply, after more than 2,000 applications were received.
Bath & North East Somerset Council says it has already processed over 1700 applications since the scheme was launched on 8th December, to provide supermarket vouchers worth £40 to eligible children across the area.
Families who haven’t yet applied have until 4th January, but are being encouraged to do so as soon as possible.
The electronic vouchers can be spent in a range of supermarkets, and are available to the families of pupils entitled to benefit-related free school meals.
Early years settings have also been contacted by the local authority to ensure parents know they may be eligible, as the vouchers are also available for parents of pupils under school age who are in nursery or pre-school settings.
This applies to parents who receive free childcare for two-year-olds, where benefits are such that they would have been entitled to free school meals.
Parents can apply for vouchers online or for parents who do not have access to the internet, applications can be made by calling 01225 477777 and select option 4.
Councillor Kevin Guy, cabinet member for Children’s Services, said: “I’m delighted that we’ve already been able to process more than 1,700 applications and issue more than 3,000 vouchers to parents and carers, but we would love more families to apply if they haven’t already.
“These vouchers are going to make a difference to so many families who will be able to enjoy Christmas without worrying how they are going to put food in front of their children.
“This includes families with children in early years settings as well as school-aged children. We’ll be continuing to process applications during the holidays, so don’t delay in getting in touch with us if you think you may be eligible.”
Bath & North East Somerset Council has also committed to funding free school meals vouchers for February half term and is looking at providing support during the Easter holidays if funding is available.