Food for thought.
That was cause and effect of a fashion show hosted by a group of downtown businesses to fundraise for the Lloydminster Public School Division breakfast program to feed hungry students.
The show held at the Royal Canadian Legion last Wednesday evening netted about $1,000 for the program from the sale of tickets.
“It went really good; we filled a lot of seats; we were pretty well sold out,” said organizer Dawn Hames from Dawn Interiors.
Some people also donated food for the Salvation Army Food Bank.
Hames noted guest speaker Sarah Kettle, the wellness learning coordinator at Jack Kemp Community School told everyone for some students breakfast is their only meal of the day.
Kettle will be overseeing the LPSD nutrition program this fall and was thrilled by the support from downtown businesses and sponsoring companies in aid of feeding school children.
“It’s just amazing; we are very happy—LPSD is very excited to be partnering with the downtown businesses and the community members to maintain our breakfast program,” said Kettle.
“We see every day the benefit of having a breakfast program and what it does for our students, so we were so excited they chose LPSD’s breakfast program to donate that money to.”
Support came from fashion show players including Addilynn Apparel, Lady Chic, Mommy Chic, Juxta, Brixton, 50th Ave. Cuts and Kat Salon, Joyous Occasions, Max Photography, The Root Bistro, and Midwest Furniture & Appliances.
Also helping out the cause were Lakeland College hairstyling students and some hair models along with David’s Tea, Sobeys and Safeway who sponsored the event tea and edibles.
Kettle told the audience the benefits to children getting a nutritious breakfast each day is that they come to school with a readiness to learn and they are able to focus in the classroom.
“Generally they are happy and healthy and that makes for productive students,” she said.
Sadly, she confirmed for some students the school breakfast is the only meal that they receive in the day.
“We do our best to maybe send some stuff home and try and give them another meal in that day,” she said.
Kettle explained every LPSD school has a breakfast program covering pre K to Grade 12 with food purchased from a variety of local distributors such as the Lloydminster and District Co-op, Superstore, Sobeys and Sysco Corporation among others.
LSPD also accesses The Olive Tree, and the Salvation Army Food Bank along with fundraising and grant applications to maintain the program.
Kettle said that’s why the downtown business fashion show was so important.
“We rely on grants and fundraising to make this program possible,” she said noting it’s generating positive results.
“We were very fortunate this year—we can see firsthand even the feedback from students saying how happy they are.”
She said students who rely on the school breakfast are able to focus in the classroom and teachers who were in the classroom see it firsthand the benefits of this program.
As for the future, Kettle said LSPD wants to make sure their breakfast program is universally available so any student that requires it or needs it or wants it is able to access the breakfast.
“We are taking away that stigma or that label attached when a child needs a breakfast—it’s about wanting a breakfast,” she said.
She said they are going to focus on making those nutritious choices with four food groups covered by breakfast menu.
“We are focusing on lean proteins, whole grains, fruits vegetable and dairies so we know they are getting the very best they can each morning,” said Kettle.