Comedian Katy Brand has raised more than £50,000 in one day in support of charities and food banks after MPs voted against extending free school meals over the holidays.
The viral fundraiser has won support from celebrities including Nigella Lawson, who said: “It shouldn’t have to be this way, but it is more important to feed a hungry child than argue about how it’s done.”
£50k! In two days! You did it! I am not setting a new target. As per my earlier Tweet, I will now leave this open until the 6th November. Whatever the total is that day will be divided between @FareShareUK, @TrussellTrust and @magic_breakfast. So keep going, and THANK YOU! ❤️ https://t.co/9cvLDBAVit
— Katy Brand (@KatyFBrand) October 23, 2020
Labour’s motion calling for the free school meals scheme to be extended over school holidays until Easter 2021, which followed a campaign by footballer Marcus Rashford, was defeated by 322 votes to 261 on Wednesday evening.
On Thursday morning, TV star and author Brand launched a GoFundMe page, called the Hungry Children Christmas Fund, saying she felt the need to raise money “while the adults fix the politics”.
It shouldn’t have to be this way, but it is more important to feed a hungry child than argue about how it’s done. Or rather, donate if you can and then do what’s necessary to stop those who make children going hungry policy https://t.co/bhkKFRkD9f
— Nigella Lawson (@Nigella_Lawson) October 23, 2020
The campaign quickly passed its £10,000 goal, leading Brand to revise its aim several times, with a “third and final target” of £50,000.
By Friday afternoon, the fundraiser had hit its final goal, with Brand stating that it will stay open until November 6.
Other celebrities publicly backing the campaign include actress Amy Lennox and author Emma Kennedy, who called the fund “amazing”.
Almost at 20K which is amazing. Help get it to target if you can and let’s help feed kids this Christmas. https://t.co/JEzamnfw77
— Emma Kennedy (@EmmaKennedy) October 22, 2020
Brand said the total fund will be split between food charities Fare Share, The Trussell Trust, and Magic Breakfast.
She added that the money raised would go to “charities with a long and reliable track record of providing food for children in poverty, along with local food banks in hardest hit areas”.
– To donate to the Hungry Children Christmas Fund, visit https://www.gofundme.com/f/t7y9ar-hungry-children-christmas-fund