Comic Relief launches emergency cost of living Christmas appeal with The Independent and The Evening Standard

22nd November 2022

Today we’re incredibly excited to announce the launch of our On The Breadline cost of living Christmas appeal with The Independent and Evening Standard.

Millions of people across the country are facing impossible decisions and extreme struggles this winter as skyrocketing bills and soaring food prices push families into crisis. With 1 in 3 children in the UK currently living in poverty and many families having to go without basic necessities, they are living in fear of what this Christmas might hold.

As the grip of the cost of living crisis continues to tighten, families are feeling completely trapped and with nowhere to turn. Wherever you live in the UK, people in your community are not just avoiding using the cooker, they’re taking out lightbulbs, they’re turning off the fridge. They’re going to bed early to stay warm and keep the bills down. Parents are struggling with the stress of holding everything together and missing meals to protect their kids from how unbelievably hard things are. 

Together we can change this -  we can make a difference and help ease the pressure felt by so many. Today we are pledging £1million to launch the appeal and help get support to those who need it now.

Samir Patel, CEO of Comic Relief, said: “This winter is going to be frighteningly tough for people up and down the country as the cost of living crisis pushes millions to breaking point. Millions face going hungry and without basic necessities, and pressure is mounting from all angles. As this national emergency intensifies, people need our help now. We are hugely grateful for this opportunity with the Evening Standard and Independent to launch a cost of living appeal and raise urgent funds this winter. From supporting foodbanks to providing warm clothing and energy top up cards, this campaign will deliver a lifeline and ease the pressure for people facing the toughest times of their lives.”

The money raised will support organisations up and down the country working hard to get help to the people who need it most. From warm winter clothes, electric blankets and water bottles to energy top cards, food vouchers and supporting food banks, along with help, advice and mental health support - donations will make a huge difference.  

Rachel Thomas, Community Development Delivery Officer at The Bread and Butter Thing in Manchester, said: “The brutal reality is it’s going to be a hard winter. We are going to do what we can with the funds and the people and food we have, to try and ease the burden as much as we can for as many people as we can.

“It’s improving people’s wellbeing. It’s not just physical wellbeing in terms of the fruit and veg or the nutrition we provide… It's also mental wellbeing. There is an incredible stress relief taken off shoulders when you know you can afford to feed your family.”

Shireen, mother of two, shopper and volunteer at a food hub run by The Bread and Butter Thing, said: “This has been a lifeline for us for the last couple of months… If I didn’t have The Bread and Butter Thing, I would have to either skip meals or be down to tins of soup or something along those lines.. just to make sure the kids were fed.”

“It’s horrible. It’s awful. I can’t describe it. I do worry - I never used to worry about money. Ever. I never had a lot. But I never used to worry. And now I do nothing but think about whether I am going to be able to support my kids…”

Your donation has never been more important. We know times are tough, but if you can give just a little bit, it will go to people in the UK who are really struggling right now to get through this crisis.