The financial pressure of providing school uniform places a huge burden and stress on families and can often lead to ill fitting, worn, unclean or incorrect uniform. Bullying, isolation, or even exclusion can result from wearing the wrong uniform, negatively impacting children’s mental health.
“My oldest they sent her home and said she wasn’t allowed to come back until she had the correct shoes. So then I had to write a letter to say that we’ll be able to get some in a week or so, I didn’t have any money.”
School uniform is one of the biggest costs associated with attending school, with the majority of the cost falling at the same time. The Child Poverty Action Group estimates that average annual costs can be around £352 for a primary school child and £481 for a secondary school child (including uniform, PE kit, shoes and bags). End Child Poverty has released data which estimates 20% of children in the borough of Bromley are living in poverty (2021/22): that’s 6 children in a classroom of 30 whose families are unlikely to be able to afford all the uniform items needed.
At Bromley Brighter Beginnings we recognise that having correct, smart, and well-fitting school uniform plays an important role in children’s wellbeing. We aim to ensure children are properly kitted out for school and give families the sense of pride and dignity they deserve.
We have been providing families across the borough with both ‘pre-loved’ and new school uniform for the last ten years. In 2021/22 we had 125 referrals for school uniform requests, helping 283 children. This was a huge increase of 118% on the previous year’s requests. The growing cost of living in recent years means families have had to prioritise essentials such as housing, food or utilities, meaning affording items such as school uniform has become increasingly difficult.
School uniform referral requests will be made on a case-by-case basis through our Facebook group until next year’s campaign starts due to storage limitations.
If you’d like to make a monetary donation for School Uniform you can do so via JustGiving – School Uniform. This enables us to purchase school logo branded and secondary school uniform which is bought new.
Want to become a regular supporter? You can set up your monthly donation here.
We are so grateful for any support you can offer. It will allow us to help as many young people as we can to access appropriate school uniform and make them feel great about going back to school.
School uniform requests must come via a referral: this could be any community professional supporting a family e.g. social workers, health visitors, teachers, refuge workers and charity professionals. We cannot accept self referrals.