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Healthy Start helping reduce food bills for families

Author | 24 February 2021

In Shropshire more than half of eligible families are missing out on Healthy Start vouchers designed to support families with young children to buy fruit, vegetables and baby milk. Shropshire Food Poverty Alliance urge everyone to check if they are eligible. They have been working with supermarkets, GPs, food banks and other organisations in the county to get the word out about this valuable help for pregnant women and young families.

Healthy Start are government issued vouchers, currently worth £3.10 a week, but will go up to £4.25 in April. Many local retailers accept the vouchers. Tesco, Co-Op, Iceland and Lidl all offer extra deals when you use the vouchers in store – Tesco adds an extra £1 to their value, Iceland gives you a free bag of frozen vegetables worth £1 and Co-op and Lidl have already increased their value to £4.25.

Fran Romberg of SFPA explains “The vouchers are easier to apply for and worth more than ever before.

To apply, simply download the form online or ask your GP, health visitor or midwife for a form. The form no longer needs to be signed by a healthcare professional, simply fill out your details and leave the final section blank. We urge everyone to check whether they are eligible as from April, they will be worth worth £220 per year.”

You are eligible for these vouchers if you are over 10 weeks pregnant or have a child under the age of 4 and are on certain benefits. You are also eligible if you are pregnant and under 18, regardless of whether you are on benefits or not. Further information can be found at shropshirelarder.org.uk/childrenandfamilies or healthystart.nhs.uk

Further information

Contact: Fran Romberg, fran@shrewsburyfoodhub.org.uk

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