Food for Thought

Canada

There are over 5,900 children in the Central Okanagan that live in a food insecure home and are at risk of going to school hungry. Since 2009, Food for Thought’s aim has been to eliminate hunger in children, one child at a time, through various programs.

Now more than ever in these uncertain times, we need to invest in our children's physical and emotional well-being. This is a fundamental opportunity to create a future full of healthy, resilient and succeeding thriving adults.

We know that a hungry child is more likely to act out and less likely to achieve their personal potential. We have seen happy productive classrooms with reduced behavioral problems, increased academic performance, and a stronger sense of community.

*Note: Please scroll down for additional information.

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Projects

Breakfast Program

Before the pandemic caused school closures, Food for Thought was providing a free breakfast for up to 1700 school-aged children a day across 30 schools.  Nutritious breakfast items were made available each weekday morning before classes began.  While this program was geared towards students facing food insecurity, any student was welcome to sit with their friends and share a meal in a safe and inclusive environment.  In an unpredictable world, Food for Thought continues to pivot programing to assist students most in need to a nutritious start to their day.  Our dedicated volunteers are safely packaging over 3000 breakfast that are being sent out to elementary, middle and secondary schools each week.

Backpack Program

Hunger doesn’t take the weekend off, and the Backpack Program ensures students do not have to go through their weekends with empty stomachs. Research is already showing some kids are falling behind academically and experiencing health challenges due to the pandemic. The most vulnerable students are able to take food home in a backpack with easy-to-follow recipe cards.

Program Delivery

Food for Thought is run by one full time staff coordinator and a team of dedicated volunteers. Program Delivery encompasses staff salary, office space, gas mileage – all things essential for Food for Thought programs to continue impacting children and families in our community.

Emergency Food Packages

Food for Thought is partnered with the School District 23, to ensure food packages continue to be delivered to each school. This allows easy access for student/parents to pick up each week. Food for Thought-Eliminating hunger one child at a time.

Garden Project

The Food for Thought Garden is a 11,000 square foot project and was graciously provided by the Legacy Foundation. This unique garden is located at Helen’s Acres in Kelowna.   This land is benefiting the children of the Backpack Program. Food for Thought and our dedicated volunteers are building a wheelchair-accessible raised planter garden.  We plan to grow fresh vegetables to send home in children’s backpacks and flowers during the summer months that we can cut and sell to buy food for the Backpack Program.  In conjunction with the Legacy Foundation, we are creating a curriculum for a literacy program to educate children about the importance of gardening and how healthy food is grown.  In addition to children visiting and experiencing the gardens, we are also looking at developing a plan for our senior’s community and persons with diverse abilities to have an opportunity to volunteer in the garden.  Our wish is to definitely create a beautiful garden that will encourage volunteering, educate children and enhance our community, along with providing food security for so many of our local children.

Adopt a Planter

Dedicate a Wheelchair Accessible Garden Planter

The seeds for the Food for Thought Garden Project were launched this April 2020, to benefit the children of the Backpack Program. During a time of shutdowns and uncertainty a small group of committed volunteers came out to start the creation of a beautiful garden. You can dedicate a garden planter to a loved one for $250. An engraved metal plate will be placed on a stained wheelchair accessible raised planter. This planter will grow sustainable food for many years to come that will nourish our local children.


Adopt a Planter

You can adopt a garden planter that was decorated with artwork from Westbank First Nation’s Youth. The bottom of each planter has four individual paintings. An engraved metal plate will be placed on the raised artwork planter, dedicated to the person you choose for $250. This garden has so much potential for our youth as it will also provide field trips to educate local children about garden literacy.

Interested in Volunteering? Email foodforthought@hopeforthenations.com to get started! We have opportunities with delivery, food packages and volunteering in our community garden project.

Sponsors

Financial Partners
Current Community Partners