A huge number of children in England’s state schools receive free school meals as they come from low income families.
With schools closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford is working with a charity FareShare to help feed children in the Manchester region.
“The work was top of my to-do list and spoke about my childhood. I am just trying to impact the next generation in a positive way,” Rashford told BBC Sport.
“I have done a lot of work with children and when I heard about the schools shutting down, I knew some kids would not be getting free meals at school.
“When I was at school, I was on free meals and my mum wouldn’t get home until around six o’clock so my next meal would have been about eight o’clock.
“I was fortunate, and there are kids in much more difficult situations that don’t get their meals at home.”
According to the 22-year-old, the Man United and their rivals Manchester City helped raise £100,000 which will feed 400,000 children across Manchester.
“I think when times are tough it is important that two clubs who have a huge social following, like we do, come together and make a difference when things which are bigger than football happen. So, credit to both clubs,” said Rashford.
The forward says he reads a lot of books on mentality. “I always want to keep developing and improving in some way and physically I can’t do that right now.
“There is so much knowledge in books and you don’t realise until you start reading yourself,” he said.
Rashford has not played since January due to a back injury and admits that he misses football – being on the pitch.
“It’s just about patience, I have been working hard on the bikes and following the programme that I have been given from the club.
“I have been playing FIFA, reading different types of books. It is important to keep time passing with positive vibes and just keep smiling,” added Rashford.
“I am just taking it day by day. It’s very difficult, even when there’s nothing on TV. I have been watching old games from years ago.”
Man United announced that Rashford has been cleared to step up his rehabilitation programme. He is the club’s top scorer so far this season with 19 goals in 31 matches.
“I feel much better, definitely comparing it to two or three weeks ago, I feel 10 times better.
“For me now, it is just about getting ready to build it back up to training and playing the games with the team. I am in a much better place. I am much happier now than I was about a month ago, so things are looking positive,” concluded Rashford.
By Tokelo Martin Mokhesi