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School district providing ongoing food support

By Don Fennell

Published 2:28 PDT, Thu April 9, 2020

Last Updated: 2:13 PDT, Wed May 12, 2021

Learning may have gone virtual for Richmond students, but that hasn’t spelled the end of the district’s food support program.

In these extraordinary times, the Richmond School District is doing its best to help keep some of the most vulnerable students and their families fed.

“Our schools have identified 244 students across 27 schools to participate in the food program,” says district spokesperson David Sadler.

“These students have been receiving breakfasts and lunches in our schools during the school year, and (these) grocery products will provide them with healthy and nutritious foods while they are learning from home.”

The Board of Education and the district’s Feed-U-Cate 38 food program is grateful to be collaborating with a number of community agencies and businesses, including the Richmond Food Security Society and Richmond Food Bank, to ensure the success of the program.

“Our first delivery to students and families took place Wednesday (April 8),” Sadler says.

The sequence of activities needed for the program to work is significant—from acquiring food products to delivery or pick-up for students—and involves staff from various departments.

“The process begins with our grounds crew picking up food from the food bank and a number of grocery stores,” Sadler explains. “The food is then transported to Richmond Secondary, where assembly and staging areas have been established, while (ensuring) all health and safety requirements are maintained. At this point, education assistants and administrators receive the food and prepare grocery bags for pickup and delivery.”

Each Wednesday, district bus drivers transport the bags of food to the 27 schools who have identified students in the program. Principals then co-ordinate the pick-ups or deliveries, and at the same time demonstrate care and sensitivity by offering choices to the students and their families as to how they want to receive the groceries.

The district food program is honoured to assist our community through a demonstration of shared commitment, collaboration and care, Sadler says. Donations can be made by cheque to Richmond School District Feed-U-Cate 38.

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