Our favorite Internet story of the past two months is the story of 9-year-old food blogger Martha Payne, of Scotland. With her dad’s help, Martha started a blog called NeverSeconds on April 30. Every school day she takes a picture of her school lunch, posts it on her blog, and writes about it. She rates each meal with her Food-o-meter. Martha’s blog began to “go viral” when celebrity chef Jamie Oliver tweeted about it. Then, on June 14, Martha’s town council, concerned over some negative comments about the school lunches, banned Martha from taking any more pictures. When fans heard about the ban, they flooded the town council’s website with comments, asking them to lift the ban. The very next day, they lifted it, and Martha was back to blogging! Newspapers all over the world wrote about Martha’s story. Her blog became more famous than ever. As of today, NeverSeconds has nearly 7 million page views.
In conjunction with her blog, Martha set up a donation page at a charity called Mary’s Meals, which helps to feed children in the African country of Malawi. When she set up the donation page, Martha’s goal was to raise £7000 (about $10,000) for Mary’s Meals. When her blog became famous, donations shot up. They are currently over £109,000 (about $170,000). Some of the children helped by Martha made a video to thank her. Be sure to watch the video below. Now Mary’s Meals plans to fly Martha and her family to Malawi to meet the children, and to see the new kitchen they are building with the money Martha raised.
Martha’s blog also started a conversation. What are kids eating in schools all over the world? How can it be better? We are so inspired by Martha’s story. We read her blog every day, and we made our own donation to Mary’s Meals on Martha’s behalf. We hope you will be inspired too.
Watch Martha and her dad talk about their project:
Children in Malawi thank Martha and friends for their donations: