A regional daily has launched a campaign to highlight the huge problem of child poverty in its city.
The Manchester Evening News aims to tackle the issue after a report by Manchester City Council revealed that almost 40,000 children across 20,000 households were living in poverty – the highest in the country outside London.
Its campaign aims to gather support to help people on a practical level with things such as ensuring children have a proper meal every day.
And staff from the paper have also stepped in to help, by donating money to buy food for children at a youth centre where a volunteer couple regularly dipped into their own pockets to feed youngsters.
An MEN comment piece about the campaign said: “Looking around the cosmopolitan centre of Manchester, it is difficult to believe that poverty lurks just down the road.
“But it has long been the case that deprivation can be found but a short walk from that success story of the city centre. Even knowing this, one is shocked to the core by the findings in our special report on child poverty today.
“We tell of children going hungry at home, dependent on the generosity of volunteers at a youth club turned feeding station.
“We report statistics from the council more appropriate to a city in a developing nation. There are 40,000 children in Manchester living below the poverty line. That means 20,000 households with an income of less than £12,600 – 60 per cent of average income.
“In some areas, three-quarters of children are living in poverty. Poverty is the norm and therefore the expectation of these children.”
It adds that answers must be sought from the government about the scandal because the local council was limited in what it could do.