News story

Magic Breakfast receives Big Society Award

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Children's Minister Tim Loughton today presented Magic Breakfast, a charity dedicated to ensuring every child starts the school day with the right breakfast, with a Prime Minister's Big Society Award.

Mr Loughton took part in a breakfast and met the Magic Breakfast team during a visit to Ingram Road Primary School in Holbeck, Leeds.

Magic Breakfast works with companies and primary schools to arrange for companies to donate food and employee time, to reach the children who need it most - ensuring they have the right fuel for learning.  The result is a free, nutritious breakfast of bagels, porridge, orange juice and cereals served every morning in the schools involved.

The charity also supports and encourages schools to approach local companies themselves as part of a national plan to help the breakfast clubs become self funding using social enterprise ideas. 

Since 2001, the organisation has delivered well over two million healthy, free breakfasts, with a staff team of less than three people.  It has a big emphasis on parent responsibility as well as helping each child form a healthy breakfast habit.

Every day, together with a strong network of corporate partners, individuals and schools, Magic Breakfast is giving over 6000 children in 200 primary schools the best start to the day.

Congratulating Magic Breakfast on the award, the Prime Minister David Cameron said:

Getting the best start in life is important for a child’s future and that start can begin quite literally, even before the school day, with a healthy breakfast.

By supporting parents and schools to ensure children kick the day off in the right way, ready to learn and able to concentrate, Magic Breakfast is playing an important part in this.

It’s a great example of the Big Society, with a charity, businesses, schools, teachers and parents all working together to support their community and its future.

Congratulations to Magic Breakfast on such an innovative scheme and to all the businesses, volunteers, schools and parents involved.

Presenting the award, Children’s Minister Tim Loughton said:

I have been fortunate to see some of the good work Magic Breakfast has carried out in schools which demonstrates why they have been given this award today. 

Magic Breakfast is not just about making sure children start the day with a healthy, nutritious breakfast, important though that is.  Their work has the potential to strengthen local communities by uniting schools, parents and corporate partners in a very inspirational way.

Welcoming the award, Carmel McConnell, Founder of Magic Breakfast said:

We are delighted to win the Prime Ministers Big Society Award, and warmly invite more business partnerships to help us provide the best educational start to life for school children in this country

Alan Mak, Trustee of Magic Breakfast said:

We are delighted to be recognised by the Prime Minister. Our partnerships with schools, parents, businesses and communities show the Big Society does work, and all the trustees are hugely proud of Carmel and the team. This Award will inspire us as we continue the fight against child hunger in the UK.

Notes to Editors

On Magic Breakfast

Magic Breakfast supports schools with over 50% Free School Meals by providing a free healthy breakfast and parent education support.  The charity currently supports 210 primary schools.

Magic Breakfast’s work has been shown to improve child attendance, punctuality, concentration and behaviour, essential to improved educational attainment. 

It also helps those schools become self funding using its social enterprise approach.

Key corporate partners are Quaker Oats, Tropicana Orange juice, Bagel Nash, John Lewis, All Star Lanes and Pearson.

Magic Breakfast has a large waiting list of schools looking to take part in the scheme. 

Magic Breakfast contact details:

Key contacts:

  • Carmel McConnell - 07710 057 955
  • Alex Cunningham - 07973 186 502

On the Big Society Awards

The Big Society Awards were set up by the Prime Minister in November 2010. The aim is to acknowledge individuals and organisations across the UK that demonstrate the Big Society in their work or activities. In so doing, the aim is also to galvanise others to follow.

The award focuses upon three specific areas:

  • Promoting social action - people being, and being encouraged to be, be more involved in their communities through giving time, money and other resources.
  • Empowering communities - local people taking control of how things are done in their area and being helped to do this by local government and others.
  • Opening up public services - public sector organisations and individuals demonstrating innovative ways of delivering public services and charities, social enterprises and private companies showing new ways of delivering public services.

For more information, visit the Big Society Awards pages.

External site: The Magic Breakfast website