Vianne Kintzinger presented the nutrition update during a education committee meeting on Wednesday night

Twenty-seven schools in Central Okanagan now have a breakfast program

Almost 18% of Okanagan children reported living below the poverty line in 2018

A total of 27 schools in the Central Okanagan now have a breakfast program thanks to support from both the government and non-profit sector.

Vianne Kintzinger, the assistant superintendent for the Central Okanagan School District, said two new schools recently signed onto the program thanks to support from Hope for the Nation, a non-profit organization.

“After Hope for the Nation stepped in to help create our breakfast program, the program has been growing. We’ve had two new schools sign on to the program, bringing the total schools participating in the district to 27.”

She presented the information on Wednesday night during a committee meeting which focused on the Food for Thought Breakfast and Brown Bag Lunch programs for students.

READ MORE: Central Okanagan schools outline education plan for Indigenous learners

While at least 36 Central Okanagan schools participate in one of the programs, almost 18 per cent of children in the district still live in poverty, according to a 2018 provincial advocacy report. That number is less than the 20 per cent of children who live below the poverty live on average province wide.

During the presentation, Kitzinger said that more investments would be made to the meal programs as more partners stepped in to help.

“I started sifting through grants, and it was a surprise to me that the federal government said that they’d be providing more grants,” said Kitzinger. “We’ll keep an eye out to find out when we can provide our children with more funds to buy more food.”

While more schools get on board with the district’s breakfast program, all 41 schools in the district are currently participating in the BC Fruit and Vegetable Nutrition Programs — an initiative aimed at providing fresh produce to children on a bi-weekly basis.


@connortrembley
connor.trembley@kelownacapnews.com

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