Having recently seen what my five year old has been eating for her school dinners I’ve been following the blog of 9 year old Martha Payne who writes the Never Seconds with interest. Aside from having my views of school dinners confirmed, her views have been making me and my 5 year old smile.
For those who haven’t heard of this intrepid little girl, Martha set up a blog six weeks ago, to show pictures of her daily school lunch as a writing project that would be seen by few others than her close relatives. Most days she’d photograph her lunch and make a comment about the food. Nothing horrible, more comments such as “The pizza in the first pic was alright but I’d have enjoyed more than 1 croquet. I’m a growing kid and I need to concentrate all afternoon and I cant do it on 1 croquette.” But word spread and in just over a week more than 100,000 people were viewing Martha’s blog and viewing her sometimes pretty horrible school dinners.
Then, of course as the blog’s audience expanded (even Jamie Oliver is a fan), the council got involved and despite having been given permission to write the blog and take pictures Argyll and Bute council banned photography in the school dining hall. Unfortunately for them and their rather rubbish PR statement, this caused a mammoth media and Twitter storm with Martha’s blog attracting over 4m people, and forcing the council into a climbdown.
Aside from being happy that she gets to finish her project, what I love the most about this story is that Martha’s blog was quietly raising money for the charity Mary’s Meals which is an international movement that sets up school feeding projects in communities where poverty and hunger prevent children from gaining an education. Before the big controversy she had raised £2000 towards her £7000 goal, but over the last week all the publicity over her blog has helped her raise over £82,010 for Mary’s Meals, which is AMAZING work from a 9 year old.
It’s such a lovely story I had to write about it because it yet again shows that kids are doing some pretty wonderful things. So are you following Martha’s blog? Do you know what your kids are eating today?