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Page last updated at 08:53 GMT, Thursday, 5 July 2012 09:53 UK

The plight of Britain's 'undernourished' children

The number of children who are going to charities to ask for food has grown significantly over the last year, according to the charity Kids Company.

Angela, a single mother who is struggling to make ends meet, told the BBC's Philippa Thomas that most of the time she would just have water instead of eating or "leftovers from what my daughter didn't eat".

Siobhan Freegard, the founder of Netmums, says a lot of children have parents who are "so chaotic" with significant drug or alcohol abuse problems, that the children "are turning up themselves to the centres".

"They're literally undernourished... they don't know where their next meal is coming from," she told the BBC Today programme.

John Vincent who co-founded the Leon chain of restaurants in London, says that 2.2 million children are living in poverty and "1.2 million of those do not get free school meals," mainly because of "stigma".

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