The last year and a half posed many challenges, which included how to ensure families in the Vancouver School District remained well fed while students learned remotely in spring 2020 and with reduced in-class time in the 2020-21 school year.
The District developed lunch kits delivered to families weekly, with essentials like bread, fresh fruits, and non-perishable items. As the end of the school year approached, a limited amount of stock remained, and the District wanted to ensure it did not go to waste. The District’s food services department reached out to the Union Gospel Mission in the Downtown Eastside neighbourhood to offer the surplus. The Union Gospel Mission supports people experiencing poverty, homelessness and addiction. The donation included 6 cases of chicken, 13 cases of turkey, 86 cases of rice, and 23 cases of canned tomato sauce, among other items.
The Union Gospel Mission responded enthusiastically and received the delivery in late June.
“We want to utilize all the food supplies as much as we can and not waste any food, especially during the summer when school is not in session,” says Jackie Lee, manager of food services at the District. “And we were able to help families who are still in need by donating to the Union Gospel Mission – continuing to support communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
During the 2021-22 school year, students without access to proper nutrition can again receive daily lunches at school.
Read more about the lunch kits.