Student nutrition programs raise over $80,000 to help local kids live free from hunger
May 1, 2017
The Children’s Foundation of Guelph and Wellington’s Food & Friends Program supports 107 student nutrition programs in Dufferin, Wellington and Guelph. Student nutrition programs offer children and youth nutritious food through breakfast, morning meal, lunch and snack programs in a safe and convenient environment to ensure they have the energy they need to focus on their school work. With the help of dedicated program coordinators and volunteers, Food & Friends is bringing healthy food to hungry minds for over 15,000 local students.
As the cost of living and healthy nutrition increases, these dedicated staff and volunteers face an increasingly difficult task to bring wholesome, healthy food to children and youth at sustainable prices. Nine years ago, the Children’s Foundation called on the communities where these programs are run to help fill the funding gap through the implementation of the Help Kids Live Free From Hunger Campaign. For the past five years, the Campaign has also received a generous donation from the Ontario Teachers’ Insurance Plan to ensure continued access of healthy nutrition to students.
Each year, from January to March, student nutrition programs receiving funding through Food & Friends participate in the Live Free Campaign and reach out to their communities for support. Every dollar raised by each program stays in the school, supporting the longevity of the program. Communities and local businesses are invited to step forward and get involved in the student nutrition programs in their own neighbourhoods and positively influence the future of their communities by investing in the health and wellness of local children and youth.
The Children’s Foundation acknowledges the efforts of all programs and awards the top recipient in four categories an additional $250 for outstanding success. This year, Ceramic Decor generously sponsors the four awards presented in Guelph. George Durigon, owner of Ceramic Decor, is been a loyal supporter of Live Free and the Food & Friends Program, “We sponsor the Live Free Campaign because we feel helping young people in our community who need a hand is important.”
The four Guelph award recipients are: John F. Ross Collegiate Vocational Institute for Most Improved Program, raising $1,709 more than in 2016; John F. Ross Collegiate Vocational Institute for Most Funds Raised Online, raising $638 through online donations; Shelldale Better Beginnings, Better Futures for Most Funds Raised Per Capita, raising $1,100 by 65 students; and Mitchell Woods Public School for the Strongest Spirit Award, hosting a beach day in the winter to “live free of the cold” and raising funds by selling ice-cream and other beach activities.
The four Dufferin award recipients are: Brisbane Public School for Most Improved Program, raising $2,559 more than in 2016; Rockwood Centennial Public School for Most Funds Raised Online, raising $394 through online donations; Brisbane Public School for Most Funds Raised Per Capita, raising $6,867 by 410 students; and Montgomery Village Public School for the Strongest Spirit Award, sponsored by Broadway Dental Centre in Orangeville, involving the community by hosting a breakfast for 300 including guests from the local nursing home.
The four Centre Wellington award recipients are: Minto-Clifford Public School for Most Improved Program, raising $2,991 more than in 2016; St. John Catholic School in Arthur for Most Funds Raised Online, raising $290 through online donations; Minto-Clifford Public School for Most Funds Raised Per Capita, raising $4,928 by 392 students; and J.D. Hogarth Public School in Fergus for the Strongest Spirit Award, hosting a lunch with the Mayor and building a roller-coaster toonie tracker.
The Foundation extends its sincere thanks and congratulations to all staff, students, parents, volunteers and community members who took part in this year’s Live Free Campaign to help local kids live free from hunger. 90 student nutrition programs took part to raise $63,184, contributing to the $80,420 raised in Dufferin, Wellington and Guelph.