A JK Rowling-penned introduction to a report timed for the Budget by three family welfare charities secured widespread media coverage last week.
Three charities - the National Council for One Parent Families, the Family Welfare Association and the Child Poverty Action Group - collaborated on the report, Like It or Lump It.
The Harry Potter author, on behalf of the charities, attacked the Government for its treatment of single parents and said its policies had left many of them in debt. She called for reform of the Social Fund, an emergency loans scheme helping the poor with items such as cookers, beds and cots.
Many Social Fund applicants are considered too poor to receive loans through the scheme. Those who do meet the criteria are often forced to live on less than their benefits to meet the repayments, said the report.
The charities called for loans to be replaced with a programme of Child Development Grants and Opportunity Grants.