The Bishop and Archbishop of Liverpool have become the first city leaders to issue public pledges in support of a radical new strategy to tackle food insecurity and create ‘a city where everyone can eat good food’.
The event at the Metropolitan Cathedral on 10th November, 7pm – 8.30pm, is open to anyone interested in learning how to join the #goodfoodliverpool movement and tackle the ‘burning injustice’ of hunger.
Archbishop of Liverpool Malcolm McMahon and Bishop of Liverpool Paul Bayes have each filmed a pledge video, outlining how they will support the Good Food Plan – and it’s hoped their words will pave the way for others to follow.
There will be opportunities to make individual, workplace, community or organisational pledges both on the night and post event, including:
- Promising to signpost people to where they can access good food
- Commit to paying all employees a real living wage
- Starting a new sustainable food business or project
- Taking part in food insecurity screening
- Sharing resources or
- Simply starting conversations in your community
Liverpool remains home to three of England’s ten most economically deprived ‘food deserts, with 32% of adults in in the city food insecure. Only 12% of children aged 11 to 18 eat their five-a-day, and a recent survey of menus at 26% nurseries found meals to be deficient in energy and nutrients.
Co-ordinated by charitable food alliance ‘Feeding Liverpool,’ with backing from Liverpool City Council and a dozen other partners in the city’s Food Insecurity Task Force, including the University of Liverpool, Liverpool Charity and Voluntary Services (LCVS), St Andrew’s Community Network, Torus Housing and FareShare – the Good Food plan is initially focused on tackling the immediate problems of acute hunger, and chronic food insecurity.
Working with a growing number of stakeholders across the city, the campaign will also focus on improving access to good food, enabling active citizenship, influencing policy, reducing food waste and environmental impact, and establishing sustainable food systems.
Speakers at the pledge event will include The Trussell Trust Chief Executive Emma Revie, MP Ian Byrne, and Melissa Campbell, Consultant in Public Health at Liverpool City Council who will set out how the Good Food Plan is a five-phase strategy, which hinges on empowering people to work collaboratively to create systemic change.
The pledge event is being co-hosted by Feeding Liverpool at the Metropolitan Cathedral, with support from Liverpool Cathedral and social justice charity Together Liverpool.
Bishop of Liverpool Paul Bayes, a vocal champion of the Real Living Wage and the Right to Food campaign, said:
“The fact that one in every three adults in Liverpool are food insecure – worrying about where they will get enough food to feed their families, skipping meals and at times going hungry – is a burning injustice. We cannot stand by and let this happen.”
As a diocese – with a church on the doorstep of every community- and as an employer, we have a part to play. We will continue to speak out against the root causes of poverty which prevent everyone being able to access good food.”
Archbishop of Liverpool Malcolm McMahon said:
“The Archdiocese, along with our ecumenical partners, has supported Feeding Liverpool since 2014, at its inception, and as a further sign of our commitment, we will contribute an additional sum of £5,000 from our charitable funds to enable Feeding Liverpool’s work of co-ordinating the Good Food Plan.
“It is a tragedy that such an initiative is needed in a wealthy country like ours, but as long as our sisters and brothers struggle under the burden of food insecurity and other forms of poverty, we will work with all people of good will to enable them to live with the dignity that is the right of every human being.”
Dr Naomi Maynard, Good Food Programme Director, Feeding Liverpool said:
“This event is for everyone. It marks a key moment for our city, where words and ideas begin to be turned into practical actions. We invite you to join us, come along to find out more about how you can play a part creating a city where everyone can eat good food.”
MP Ian Byrne, advocate for Good Food Plan and founder of the Fans Supporting Foodbanks; Right to Food Campaign, said:
“Everyone should have the right to good food. Liverpool’s Good Food Plan is an important step in the right direction towards making this true for our city, but we need everyone in our community to come together in collective solidarity to make this possible.”
Deputy Mayor Councillor Jane Corbett said:
“Liverpool’s Good Food Plan is so important especially at the moment, with food poverty and food insecurity rising so fast. It also links directly with Professor Michael Marmot’s Fair Society, Healthy Lives which says everybody should have a healthy standard of living.”
Melisa Campbell, Consultant in Public Health at Liverpool City Council and co-chair of Liverpool’s Food Insecurity Task Force said:
“The relationship between food insecurity and health is clear. In order to make budgets stretch, people are forced to purchase food items that are cheap, often processed and lacking in nutrition in order to put a meal on the table. This is resulting in poorer health for many families, which exacerbates existing medical conditions.”
Rev Canon Dr Ellen Loudon, Chair of social justice charity Together Liverpool and Liverpool Cathedral’s emergency food charity Micah Liverpool said:
“We all want to live in a city where everyone can eat good food. But we cannot achieve this alone, everyone in Liverpool has a role to play in making this vision a reality. This is the beginning of a journey and we encourage everyone to join the conversation and help explore what we can achieve together.”
Find out more about the Good Food Plan and sign up for updates here: https://www.feedingliverpool.org/goodfoodplan/
Follow @GoodFoodLiverpool Instagram and Facebook and @GoodFoodLpool on Twitter, and use #GoodFoodLiverpool to join the conversation.