Christmas at the foodbank: Hayley’s baby is born and the family gets some great help

Ann McGauran

Hayley called into the Greenwich foodbank just before Christmas. She was still in the very last stages of pregnancy, but wanted to bring me up to date on how things were going for her family. A week earlier, I’d met her for the first time when she called in with a voucher for three days of emergency food. She, her partner and their two children of 13 and nine were in dire straits. She’s a home care worker who stopped work early because she had a history of giving birth prematurely and wasn’t able to do the lifting and hoisting of clients that her job requires. Her employers owe her statutory maternity pay which should have been given to her well before Christmas, but which they have told her will not now arrive until mid-January.

Her partner is a self-employed driving instructor. Business has been very bad recently, with no…

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