Joe Wicks and Fearne Cotton will be among the famous faces to appear in the new back-to-basics weekly cooking tutorials for parents on the breadline, inspired by Marcus Rashford and celebrity chef Tom Kerridge.
The Manchester United striker last year forced the Government to extend free school meal provision for hard-up children.
Now, he is launching social-media based weekly tutorials with Tom Kerridge – which will also feature famous faces from the worlds of sport, music and television – to inspire people to make easy but healthy meals on a budget.
Between March and August in 2020, 2.3 million children in the UK experienced food poverty - 30 times the size of Old Trafford stadium.
When does the campaign launch?
The campaign, named Full Time: Get Cooking With Marcus And Tom, launches on Sunday 25 April and coincides with the Government’s Healthy Start payment scheme, which supports low-income households with grocery shopping.
How can I watch ‘Full Time: Get Cooking With Marcus And Tom?’
The duo’s 52 tutorials will be posted on Instagram every Sunday, and cover recipes including fish pie, Mexican-style chicken and Rashford’s childhood favourite, spaghetti Bolognese, as well as lighter courses such as overnight oats and sandwiches.
Recipes will be posted weekly on the @FullTimeMeals Instagram page.
Which other celebrities will take part?
Rashford, a self-confessed novice in the kitchen, will take part in around 20 ‘how-to’ videos, with celebrity guests such as broadcaster Fearne Cotton and fitness guru Joe Wicks among those substituting in to join Kerridge, 47.
The pair said they were inspired to join forces due to their personal experiences of growing up in single-parent households on low incomes.
Rashford, 23, told reporters ahead of the launch: “Is it fair if people go hungry?
“No it’s not, it’s unfair if somebody goes to sleep without eating a meal.
“I want it to get to a stage where, worst case scenario, everybody has to be at least eating three meals, breakfast, lunch and dinner, that’s my aim.”
He said the Full Time campaign sought to dispel any fears of cooking for those with limited skills.
“Sometimes a lot of people are afraid of mistakes (in the kitchen), so if a lot of kids engage with it then it will be a lot of fun,” he said.
Drawing on memories of going hungry as a child, Rashford added: “I remember sometimes at school I would fall asleep – I just hadn’t eaten food, I wasn’t awake, so I would just literally fall asleep.
“So I can see how it has an effect on their ability to learn and concentrate in class.
“Some of these kids may dream to be a scientist but imagine if they’re in science class but they’re always tired – I don’t want that to happen.”
What are Healthy Start vouchers?
Rashford said he wanted the initiative to help remove the sort of “embarrassment” his mother Melanie felt when using food banks, and described the stigma attached to state-funded programmes such as Healthy Start vouchers as “the most silly thing I’ve ever heard”.
Healthy Start vouchers equate to £4.25 per child under the age of four each week to spend on items such as fruit, vegetables and pulses – ingredients celebrity chef Kerridge said are fundamental to the Full Time campaign’s recipes.