Vancouver, BC, January 12, 2011 -The KidSafe Project Society, in partnership with the Vancouver Board of Education, is working to keep schools open during Spring Break. KidSafe will provide nutritious meals and outreach programming to children from Queen Alexandra, Admiral Seymour, MacDonald, Grandview, Florence Nightingale, and Mount Pleasant Elementary Schools. The local non-profit organization is excited to announce the acceptance of their "Good Idea" in the Pepsi Refresh Project, and urges you to vote before the deadline of February 28, 2010.
KidSafe has been taking care of Vancouver's at-risk children, providing them a place to go with nutrition, recreation, education and supervised care for over 15 years. Although these essential services are provided by schools, they disappear when schools close for holidays. During the winter, spring and summer break times, these children in east side neighbourhoods are witnesses and victims of, crime, abuse and gang recruitment. Current funding shortfalls in the school system have led to increased school closure time, specifically an extra week at Spring Break that KidSafe does not currently have funding for.
Gerhard Maynard, the Executive Director of the KidSafe Project Society, notes, "The full cost of us offering two weeks of engaged outreach programming to 400 kids during Spring Break is $60,000. Winning the Pepsi Refresh Project will bring us $25,000 closer to our goal of providing safe havens for these vulnerable children. We're calling on all people who care about child development and the well being of their Vancouver community to go online and vote for the project. It's an affordable, easy way to show your support. We are also inviting individuals, corporations, and small businesses to visit our website and make a donation to help us meet our goal of raising $60,000. Our kids depend on the generosity of people that they have never met."
Kristi Rintoul, Coordinator of KidSafe Programs, remarks, "Many kids look forward to Spring Break; it is a time for them to put down their pencils and get out into the community with friends and family. For children in Vancouver's inner-city facing both social and economic barriers, Spring Break can be a time of loneliness, hunger, boredom and neglect. It is our goal at KidSafe to make sure that all of Vancouver's children look forward to Spring Break. We make sure that all children are provided with the opportunities and care they deserve, and truly are given a break."
To vote for KidSafe, visit: http://www.refresheverything.ca/kidsafe - Deadline: February 28, 2011. Finalists will be announced on March 1st.
To help promote the idea on your blog, Twitter, Linked In or Facebook site: http://pep.si/eMxAOs
To donate to the KidSafe Project: http://www.kidsafe.ca/donate.html
The KidSafe Project Society was launched by inner-city school principals, concerned citizens and The Vancouver Sun newspaper in 1993. In response to a brutal child tragedy that occurred during vacation, our goal was to provide vulnerable children with a safe place to go when school is out.
Today, The KidSafe Project Society is a registered charity run by a community-based board of directors, and continues to operate on community support and the contributions of government, corporations, foundations and individuals.
KidSafe supports over 400 at-risk children annually, and runs in six Vancouver elementary schools: Queen Alexandra, Admiral Seymour, MacDonald, Grandview/?uuqinak'uuh, Florence Nightingale, and Mount Pleasant Elementary. KidSafe welcomes children during the two months of summer vacation, spring break, winter break, and after-school during the academic calendar. The Society offers emotional support, nutritious meals, and positive activity alternatives aimed at helping children build confidence and self-esteem, while providing them with opportunities for social development. Unique programs include literacy programming, gardening and nature activities, field outings such as visits to Science World, hip-hop dance classes, and fine arts instruction.
In 2004, KidSafe received the B.C. School Superintendents Association Award of Recognition for our unique program serving inner city school children and received special designation from the Vancouver School Board as a community partner in education.