Schools in Delta may be closed for in-person instruction, but staff are making sure that vulnerable students still have access to the food they need at home.
For the fourth week straight, Delta School District staff are busy assembling and distributing food hampers to 125 families across the city. So far, they have delivered 370 hampers in North Delta and 125 in Ladner and Tsawwassen.
“Many people within the district — including child and youth care workers, principals, vice principals, education assistants, teachers, counsellors and other district staff — are an integral and essential part of our food security program, and are working hard to ensure the needs of families experiencing vulnerability at this difficult time are met,” DSD superintendent Doug Sheppard said in a press release.
“We are reaching out to families weekly to determine what support they need. Not surprisingly, we are seeing that need increase across our community with each week that passes.”
Each week, district child and youth care workers shop, pick up food donations from various organizations, pack the hampers and distribute them to families in need. Other district staff are finding innovative ways to help as well, such as teaching chefs and kitchen staff at various secondary schools — including North Delta’s Seaquam Secondary — creating frozen meals for vulnerable families in the community.
The district has received grants from the Vancouver Sun’s Adopt-A-School campaign ($15,000), Breakfast Club of Canada ($15,000) and United Way ($25,000) in support of its food security program, as well as donations from numerous organizations, including the City Dream Centre, the Delta Fire Department, the East End Boys Club, Felix Farms, Guru Nanak Sikh Temple, Monte Cristo Bakery, Neutron Factory Works, Save-On-Foods Nordel, Save-On-Foods Tsawwassen, the South Delta Food Bank and Yo Bro/Yo Girl Youth Initiative.
“We are so grateful to our local community as it has provided invaluable support. Many thanks to the City of Delta for providing networking and grant application support, and to Deltassist for helping to identify families in need and providing community support,” Sheppard said.
“In addition, we have received many donations of gift cards, food, hampers and financial contributions from several individuals, school PACs and local organizations, all of which are invaluable to families in need in our district. Thank you!”