Charity ‘astounded by level of need’ as it warns of hidden crisis of childhood poverty

A charity is warning of a “hidden crisis” of childhood poverty after reporting that demand for its services has never been greater.

London-based Little Village said it had supported almost 2,000 families since it was set up two years ago, handing out hundreds of cots, buggies and nappy supplies.

Half the families supported are homeless or living in temporary accommodation.

The charity, which operates like a foodbank but for clothes and toys for under-fives, said more children in inner city London were living in poverty than elsewhere in the UK.

Sophia Parker, chief executive of Little Village, said: “I continue to be astounded by the level of need we deal with on a daily basis. It is a hidden crisis of childhood poverty, and it’s right here on our doorsteps.

“People don’t believe me when I tell them we see babies sleeping on sofa cushions on the floor because the parents can’t afford a cot. It’s heartbreaking to hear from mums who are rationing nappies or living in overcrowded, rat-infested homes.

“When you’re forced to choose between heating and eating, it’s no wonder that kids’ clothing or toys are not a priority.”

Copyright (c) Press Association Ltd. 2018, All Rights Reserved. Picture (c) Little Village.