Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario – Niagara Local – helps Niagara Nutrition Partners with the fundamental building blocks of school feeding programs

Jessica Parker

By Jessica Parker

SAINT CATHARINES, ONT. (June 17, 2015) – As Niagara schools wind down for the year, Niagara Nutrition Partners is gearing up to maintain its more than 210 healthy meal programs in schools across the Niagara Region. Meals will resume at the September start of the 2015/2016 school year enriched with a timely donation of $10,000 from the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario – Niagara Local. NNP will use the funds towards vital upkeep needs such as refrigerators to safely store food and dishwashers to properly sanitize dishes after use.

“This donation from ETFO is going to go far to help NNP maintain the infrastructure required to be in place for our 400 volunteers to safely and efficiently provide meals and snacks for more than 14,000 children for the next school year,” explained Anne Kirkpatrick, Program Manager and Advisory Board Chair for NNP.

“ETFO understands the importance of prep and maintenance to serve our students,” said ETFO President, Todd Rimmington. “NNP is essential to running and maintaining school nutrition programs, which help children maximize their potential by providing the appropriate fuel to successfully complete each school day.”

A portion of the ETFO’s donation will provide gas cards to volunteers to help out with their travels in shopping for groceries for the student nutrition program in their school.

“Volunteers donate their time and sometimes their own money throughout each school year for the good of the children,” said Kirkpatrick. “We would not exist without their time and compassion. We can’t thank them enough and hope this can help out a little bit during their travels.”

All Niagara parents regardless of socio-economic background can be confident in knowing that while in school, their child has access to healthy, balanced meals and snacks that are held to the highest standards of quality and nutrition.

NNP is dedicated to organizing, educating and equipping 210 existing school programs and more than 400 volunteers who run individual programs in schools handling everything from food purchasing, preparation, serving and clean up. The goals of the programs are to provide children with the necessary nutrition required for energy, concentration and ultimately an increased chance of success at school. NNP works with elementary and secondary schools within the District School Board of Niagara, the Niagara Catholic District School Board, and the CSD - Catholic Centre - Sud. In addition to provincial government grants, NNP relies on community fundraising for 85 per cent of annual costs.

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Niagara Nutrition Partners is a Region-wide initiative providing coordinated nutrition programs in elementary and secondary schools, as well as community based programs. NNP is able to offer support to nutritional programs through provincial grant programs and local fundraising efforts.

The ETFO Niagara Local represents approximately 1,600 teachers and 31,000 elementary students located at 140 sites across the Niagara peninsula. Our goals are to provide quick, professional and confidential services to members. We support personal and professional growth through a climate of mutual respect, fairness, equal opportunity, collegiality, clarity of process and democracy.

PHOTO CAPTION FROM l-r:From l-r: Anne Kirkpatrick (NNP Program Manager), Todd Rimmington (President ETFO), Jada Nicklefork (Vice President ETFO), Brian Baker (Vice President ETFO). 8

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