• Ellie Bell


After coming across a shocking article about children living in poverty in the UK, I discovered a point of interest that may help create more content in relation to food banks, that I hadn't yet thought about.


The article written by Louise Tickle, a freelance journalist for the Guardian that writes about social affairs, family law and education, provides us with stories from people suffering in food poverty. There are examples of how little money parents are left with for food after paying rent and bills, and how they skip meals to ensure children aren't hungry. We are told from the article that over four million children in the UK live in poverty, and that these children are likely to suffer with health problems like diabetes and heart disease.

It's shocking how these facts and statistics aren't broadcast all over the media and aren't addressed by the government. As a very recent article (published Feb. 2020) and with the current COVID-19 situation, it would be thought that concerns for the health of children would be much higher when they aren't receiving food at school. The free school meals campaign ran by footballer Marcus Rashford eventually saw the government realise that extra measures need to be put in place to support children over the summer holidays with extended weekly food vouchers.

The article goes on to explain the work of the Community Stuff charity, that run cookery classes in Eastbourne for those who are on low income. They also run lunch clubs for those who are socially isolated. As this charity deals with issues I'm very passionate about, I decided to purchase their cook book Beyond the Food Bank which guides people through meals and recipes that are using food banks and are unsure what meals they can make with the food provided. The book also has a cupboard plan and weekly shopping lists to help people budget and buy store cupboard ingredients that can be used over again. The book can be purchased and donated to a food bank where it will be given to somebody who needs guidance.

After receiving the book I decided to make one of the meals myself. I thought it could become an interesting part of the project to document the various meals the plan takes you through. I started with the creamy pasta dish, which requires pasta, milk/water and a can of creamy based soup. These are the photos I took during the process...

The photos have context and show the lack of ingredients you have to create a meal when using an emergency food bank parcel. However the photographs themselves aren't particularly impressive, they look too instructional and basic. The use of the cook book in the background was perhaps too obvious and looked like an advert. Although I like the idea and it provides me with an insight into meals that can be produced from food bank parcels, I won't strictly continue down this route as it is too straightforward. I may use the recipes for inspiration for other photos where meals are concerned in my series.

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