Opinion Former Article

David Miliband MP supports Team V food poverty campaign

Young volunteers tackle food poverty in communities across the country

David Miliband MP meets Team v volunteers collecting food items for people experiencing food poverty this Christmas

David Miliband MP has pledged his support for a nationwide taskforce of young volunteers, who have taken over empty shops and community centres to tackle food poverty this Christmas.

Team V, an innovative youth volunteering scheme lead by the charity vinspired, is a national group of creative and motivated young people, tasked with tackling key social issues in their communities.

Mr Miliband met with the members of Team v London today (December 7) to hear more about the team’s campaign to tackle food poverty. The young team leaders are setting up food hubs in community centres, offices and disused shops across the country. They have teamed up with local charities to ensure the food donated gets to the families who need it most before Christmas.

Team v London leader, Luke Harris, says: “Christmas is a time of year when we all hope to enjoy those extra treats – huge dinners, mince pies, chocolates - but around seven per cent of all families in the UK can’t afford to celebrate Christmas at all[i]. And with around one in five families in the UK living below the poverty line[ii], many more will face a struggle to put Christmas dinner on the table. We’ve had a great response from lots of businesses and members of the public in central London already. But I’m grateful for Mr Miliband’s support in highlighting our campaign to make Christmas a little happier for some of our neighbours.”

David Miliband MP said: “Luke and the rest of Team v London are doing an inspirational job of tackling the problem of food poverty. They are a wonderful example of the positive contribution that dedicated young volunteers make to their communities and I wish them the best of luck with this important campaign.”

If you would like to make a donation of non-perishable food items, you can find out about your nearest Team v food hub at: www.vinspired.com/teamv/


For more information, or to arrange photographs of the food drive, please contact:
- Luke Harris,Team v London Leader: 07814958366, luke.harris@vinspired.com
- Janqui Mehta, vinspired PR Manager: 07825 597873, janqui.mehta@vinspired.com

About Teamv
Team v is a team of highly motivated volunteers (aged 18-25) using their creative brilliance and natural people skills to make real change happen in communities across England.
Teamv is a new programme, administered by vinspired, in partnership with Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education (NIACE) and the Rank Foundation designed to activate a network of young people leading social action campaigns across England. v will gives team leaders an inspiring package of training, tools and tactics to recruit their teams of volunteers, lead the campaigns.
About food poverty
· Some four million people in the UK suffer from "food poverty" - not having enough to eat, or not being able to afford the right kinds of food[iii]

· The Department of Health recognises food poverty as “the inability to afford, or to have access to, food to make up a healthy diet.”[iv]

· Those who are most likely to experience food poverty are[v]:

o people living on low incomes or who are unemployed

o households with dependent children

o older people

o people with disabilities

o members of black or minority ethnic groups

· Poor diet is related to 30% of life years lost in early death and


[i] Family Resources Survey 2004-05

[ii] Poverty and Inequality in the UK 2008- Institute for Fiscal Studies (13.5 million people)

[iii] Joseph Rowntree Foundation, 2011

[iv] Department of Health, 2005

[v] National Heart Forum, 2004

[vi] National Heart Forum, 2004

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