The Yorkshire Cricket Foundation joined forces with Morrisons this summer to run Crick-EAT, an initiative that used the power of sport to provide nutritious meals to children and families from disadvantaged backgrounds in West Yorkshire.
The vital program, which has also provided 1,000 hours of cricket fun to help improve the well-being and health of some of the region’s most disadvantaged families, ends on Friday, September 3 after a great success.
Since many children come from low-income households throughout the region, hunger during the holidays is a major problem for families who may not have access to free school meals during the summer months.
Yet in West Yorkshire, 12 community centers have been providing thousands of children with a free nutritious lunch for six weeks as part of the Crick-Eat partnership, as well as hours of engaging and fun cricket training from professionally trained coaches.
Famous faces such as Bradford-born Adil Rashid, a player for the Yorkshire Cricket Club and England cricketer, and the Mayor of Leeds, Asghar Khan, witnessed the meals in full swing and assisted during visits to community centers.
Cllr Khan, who came to Leeds from India as an 11-year-old, visited one of the busiest centers this summer: the Bilal Sports Center in Harehills this week.
Having spent his early years living in the Mirpur district of Kashmir, Cllr Khan moved to Beeston in 1980 when he was 11 years old to reunite with his father, who had found work in an Armley foundry.
He attended Cross Flats Park Primary School and Cockburn High School, before embarking on a career as a postman, which has spanned 30 years.
Cllr Khan, who participated in batting practice and helped deliver meals to youth during his visit, said the Harehills-based sports center center, which has more than 300 youths registered to receive meals and training each day , had been “Vital” for the local families of the community.
He said: “It has been a difficult period over the last 18 months, especially in the downtown areas where poverty and deprivation are high.
“Providing that extra support through food and training has helped families a lot.
“Coming in person and seeing young people have fun, make friends and learn new skills, and build their confidence has been inspiring.
“A big thank you to the Yorkshire Cricket Foundation and Morrisons for providing this vital help to young people.”
Kamran Khan, 37, a cricket coach who is helping to run the program at the Bilal Sports Center, said it was really important that they had been able to deliver “a fantastic community project” in an underprivileged area.
He added: “Many of the parents here would have problems during the summer, there are children who depend on meals at school lunch time and outside of the term, during the six week period, it is a long time for some children to leave. without a meal.
“Being able to provide that to children is vital for their health and well-being.
“Seeing young people smiling and happy and getting out of here and seeing that they have had a great time puts a smile on our faces.”
To mark the final week of the inspiring program, Bradford East MP Imran Hussain also visited a community center in his local constituency – Karmand Community Center, Barkerend Rd, Bradford.
While previously North West Leeds Labor MP Alex Sobel saw the project first hand at Brudenell Primary School in Leeds, with the MP participating in a game of cricket with a group of young people.
Moving forward, Mr. Sobel emphasized the need to expand the Crick-EAT program throughout the region during school holidays.
He said: “We’ve had this whole year where people like Marcus Rashford have been campaigning on the problem of hunger during the holidays and it’s great that we have this show that addresses a number of different things, including nutrition, health and fitness. wellness. .
“But there are a lot of kids who unfortunately won’t be able to access programs like this, so we need a much larger program in many different areas to make sure no child goes hungry.”
Community centers also included Hovingham Elementary School and Brudenell Elementary School in Harehills.
Elland Cricket Club, in Calderdale, Liversedge Cricket Club in Kirklees and King James Fernside, in Huddersfield, and Keighley Cricket Club are also centers.
While in Bradford, Park Avenue, Sutton Community Center, Rockwell Center and Beap Community Partnership are the chosen locations.
The Morrisons community ‘champions’ have been working with their local headquarters to deliver the packed lunches that include refreshments and snacks.
In addition to providing lunches, Morrisons has partnered with Colgate Palmolive to provide 10,000 toothbrushes and 10,000 toothpastes to support dental hygiene among children.
Rebecca Singleton, Community Director of …
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This notice was published: 2021-09-03 06:20:18