Comedian Jason Manford has lifted the lid on his early years growing up, recalling his parents’ struggles to heat their home and put food on the table.
Family holidays and even school uniforms were an impossibility without help from charities.
And before his big break in 2007 with a small role in sitcom ‘Ideal’, the aspiring comedian picked up odd jobs where he could and gave back to his parents from the little he had.
He said: “I always say I only realised I had an underprivileged childhood later on in life. At the time you don’t know, do you? You have nothing to compare it to.
“My parents did a great job of bringing us all up, and there was a lot of laughter in the house, but we had charities help us out sometimes.
“The Lord Mayor’s Fund helped us with school uniforms, our only holiday in my childhood was paid for by the same charity.
“But also, we got by with the kindness of family and friends and neighbours.
“All the kids were out together hanging around, playing games, messing around. We were just there for each other.”
His experiences have inspired his passion to give back to communities through charity work.
Jason was speaking after he served up of bowls of porridge to those in need at his local warm hub in his hometown of Stockport – one of 47 warm hubs supported by Quaker Oats in the UK, via a partnership with charity Groundwork.
In the last year, demand for warm hubs – local, free facilities offering somewhere warm for people to go and enjoy a hot meal or drink – and food banks is currently at a record high, with 19 per cent of people having used a food bank or food donation point this year.
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