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150,000 children living in poverty in Greater Manchester

A charity is warning that levels of child poverty in parts of Greater Manchester are near the worst they have ever seen in their 120-year history.

The report by the Children's Society claims more than 150,000 children are living in poverty in the area.

That equates to half the children in some parts of Manchester and Salford.

The charity also said some 4,500 children run away every year - a quarter of whom are likely to be hurt or be at significant risk of harm.

Today the X-Factor singer Misha B who grew up in one of the poorest areas - Hulme and Moss Side in Manchester - spoke to youngsters experiencing poverty at home, just as she did.

Elaine Wilcox reports.

Food bank to become a "full time project"

Young volunteers helping to pack food parcels for Salford families. Credit: City West Housing Trust

City West Housing Trust says the tough financial climate means that demand for the food parcels has risen this year, and with energy bills set to increase this winter the Salford housing association has decided to establish the food bank as a full time project.

A total of five new food banks have opened in the Walkden and Little Hulton areas in the last year.

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Greater demand for Salford food bank

A Salford food bank which has helped more than 140 families is set to be expanded, saying more people in the city are falling into food poverty.

City West Housing Trust, which owns and manages 14,600 homes across west Salford, has run the food bank to support households in the Little Hulton, Walkden and Boothstown areas as part of a pilot project over the past 12 months.

The project is part of the Salford Foodshare Network, which brings together agencies to tackle food poverty. City West says it has already distributed more than 250 food parcels that are designed to support local people who are struggling to afford enough food to get them through the week.

600,000 live with effects of extreme poverty

A 12-month investigation into poverty in Greater Manchester will publish findings today. Credit: ITV Granada

A 12-month investigation into poverty in Greater Manchester will publish its findings today.

The cross party group of MPs will call for more help for 600,000 people who are living with the effects of extreme poverty.

The report says there is a danger 1.6m could slide into deeper poverty.

Quarter of families in poverty cutting back on food and new clothes

Save the Children say children are aware their parents are cutting back on essentials Credit: ITV Granada

Save the Children interviewed children and parents from low income families.

The charity found a quarter of children in the North West said their parents are cutting back on buying food and new clothes.

One in six of the North West's poorest parents say their children have to go without new shoes. The same proportion say their kids may have to do without a winter coat.

Alison, aged 14, told researchers: "When I ask for stuff my mum tells me to go away. I wish I could get a whole load of money and give it to her."

North West home to highest number of poor communities

Save the Children is publishing a report on child poverty Credit: ITV Granada

Save the Children says according to one study the North West is home to nine out of 10 of the poorest communities in England.

The charity has published a new report called 'It Shouldn't Happen Here', which says the North West's poorest children are bearing the brunt of the recession.

Three quarters of parents on low incomes have just £50 a week to spend on food, the study had found.

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North West among worst for child poverty

The North West has been named as one of the most deprived areas of the UK.

Children's charity Save the Children says according to one study the region is home to nine out of 10 of the poorest communities in England. Five of those are in Liverpool.

The charity says parents and children in the region are suffering after "years of stagnating wages, inflation and cuts to welfare spending".

It is trying to raise £500,000 to help British families – the first time it has appealed to the UK public for funds to help children at home.