Help at hand for uniforms

Grocery workers’ fund for school clothes

The cost of school uniforms can run into hundreds of pounds every year

INDUSTRY charity GroceryAid is inviting low-income families to apply for help in kitting their children out for school.

The School Essentials Grant aims to reduce the financial impact on low-income grocery employees when children go back to school after the summer.

The charity reports that a recent survey by The Schoolwear Association revealed that the average secondary school uniform costs over £100 per child.

And, GroceryAid found, this is leaving many families struggling to cope, forcing them to cut back on food and other essential items to buy new uniforms and equipment.

To help them cope with this expense, parents employed in grocery for at least six months can apply to receive £150 per school-aged child, up to a maximum of three children.

Applicants must show evidence that they are in receipt of Child Benefit, Child Tax Credit and meet the eligibility criteria.

The grant will close on 30 September, or sooner if the fund has been fully allocated.

This grant is available to employees working in any part of the grocery industry, including  manufacturers, supermarkets, independents, wholesalers, distributors, sales and all support functions.

Last year the take-up in grants was so popular that GroceryAid tripled the original amount in the fund while applications were still open to meet the demand.

This year it has doubled the fund again and hopes to help over 1,400 families.

GroceryAid welfare director, Mandi Leonard, said: “GroceryAid’s School Essentials Grant will help to alleviate some of the financial strain on low income families at the start of the new school year, particularly after the year everyone has had.”

She continued: “On average families spend around £337 on secondary school uniform each year with primary school parents paying as much as £315 a year per child.”

Full details of the grant and how to make an application can be found at GroceryAid’s website.