Bradford Council is the latest organisation to announce plans to help feed disadvantaged children during the half-term school holiday.

After a high profile campaign by Marcus Rashford to provide free school meals to disadvantaged children during the school break was voted down in Parliament, a number of authorities, businesses and cafes have announced they will be providing meals over the upcoming half term break – a period when children will not have access to free school meals.

Bradford Council is donating £20,000 to food banks across the district and is also working with community organisations to serve up more than 10,000 meals to vulnerable families during the October break.

The plan was announced by the deputy leader and portfolio holder for education, employment and skills, Councillor Imran Khan, who described it as “absolutely the right thing to do”.

It builds on the success of a scheme the Council ran over the summer holidays when it funded 45 charities and community organisations to run summer holiday clubs providing food and activities to school children.

Council Leader Susan Hinchcliffe said: “At this time of national crisis it is the role of Government to step up and support those who are struggling most. We were very disappointed in the result of the debate in the House of Commons on Wednesday. If successful this would have supported Bradford families. The resulting outcry has been huge. We have stepped in to help but it’s also great to see that businesses and voluntary sector organisations across the district are lending support. It’s a real team effort.”

Cllr Khan said: “As a council we felt compelled to step up. We are committed to ensuring that no child goes hungry in Bradford district. It is absolutely the right thing to do.

“We know that school holidays are tough for our poorest families during this time of Covid. For those already struggling on low incomes, finding the money for the extra meals is very challenging. The dreadful financial consequences of Covid-19 have exacerbated the problem.

“During the summer holidays more than 2,300 school-age children were helped by our Holiday Activities and Food Programme. I am delighted that of the 45 organisations we worked with then, more than 30 have already answered our call, at very short notice, to help provide meals for our most vulnerable children and families during this half term.”