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October, 2012

GACAB: Almost 7 out of 10 teachers in Ireland (69%) believe that pupils are coming to school hungry


Almost 7 out of 10 teachers in Ireland (69%) believe that pupils are coming to school hungry. While 15% were unsure whether this is the case, only 15% of teachers could say that they did not believe that pupils were coming to school hungry.

When teachers were asked why students are coming to school hungry, they cited a number of reasons;

·         37% believe that pupils are coming to school hungry because of  a lack of money at home

·         36% believe that it is due to apathy at home

·         23% believe it is due to a ‘lack of time at home’

Worryingly, 59% of teachers surveyed believe there has been an increase in the number of children coming to school hungry, since last year. The survey was commissioned to coincide with the launch of the Kellogg’s ‘Help give a child a breakfast campaign’.  The campaign, which has run in the UK for a number of years, has announced that a dedicated pot of funding will be available to Irish breakfast clubs between now and January. Over €30,000 has been made available to support breakfast clubs in Ireland.  

Commenting on the findings of the research, Bernadette Grant, Marketing Director, Kellogg’s in Ireland said:  “Kellogg’s has a strong track record in supporting families through our work with breakfast clubs across Europe and we are now rolling out this initiative in Ireland. We know that there are over 500 breakfast clubs providing really valuable support to families and children in schools and community groups throughout Ireland and we are confident that this initiative will help to further support clubs that may be struggling for funding in the current climate.

“We already know that 21% of children report going to school or to bed hungry because there is not enough food in the home and that 13% of school children report never eating breakfast on a weekday. However these new figures are alarming as they confirm that teachers are seeing hungry children arriving at Irish schools on a daily basis. We know that where schools do have a breakfast club in place, this can provide a real lifeline for families in such difficult times.”

83% of teachers surveyed believe that hunger causes a decrease in concentration among pupils, 76% believe it causes a decrease in performance levels and 75% believe that it causes an increase in tiredness and lethargy. A further 54% said that hunger increases poor behaviour in the classroom. Alarmingly, the survey also reveals that many teachers are being forced to take matters into their own hands with a third (33%) admitting that they have brought food into school for hungry children.

A quarter (25%) of teachers surveyed say they currently run a breakfast club at their school. One in ten teachers surveyed said that they used to have a breakfast club but that it closed. 72% of these – that’s 7% of all teachers surveyed – said that their breakfast club closed as a result of budget cuts or funding issues.

Schools and community groups interested in applying for an award, should log on to  www.giveachildabreakfast.ie for details on how to apply for funding.

Kellogg’s recently announced that the company is working with Healthy Food for All to fund a pilot programme which will support the establishment of four new breakfast clubs in North Dublin. Applications from schools are currently being assessed so that funding is in place for schools to start serving breakfasts in January 2013. Healthy Food for All will monitor and evaluate the success of these clubs over a two year period.




For information:                                                                                    

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Gráinne O’Brien                                                                              087 2610862

Niamh Hickey                                                                                  086 3049228                                                                                                                                                     


Note to Editors:

About Kellogg Company

Driven to enrich and delight the world through foods and brands that matter, Kellogg Company (NYSE: K) is the world's leading producer of cereal, second largest producer of cookies and crackers and - through the May 2012 acquisition of the iconic Pringles® business - the world's second largest savory snacks company. In addition, Kellogg is a leading producer of frozen foods. Every day, our well-loved brands - produced in 18 countries and marketed in more than 180 countries - nourish families so they can flourish and thrive. With 2011 sales of more than $13 billion, these brands include Cheez-It®, Coco Pops®, Corn Flakes®, Eggo®, Frosted Flakes®, Kashi®, Keebler®, Kellogg's®, Mini-Wheats®, Pop-Tarts®, Pringles®, Rice Krispies®, Special K®, and many more. To learn more about Kellogg Company, including our corporate responsibility initiatives and rich heritage, please visit www.kellogg.ie


This survey was carried out online among primary (55%) and secondary school (45%) teachers / members of Empathy Research’s IdeasPanel. The survey was live from 27th September – 7th October 2012. There were a total of 553 participants in the survey.


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Paul Wheeler

Louise Davies Thompson

Alison Last

Kate Prince