Household food insecurity affects 1 in 6 Canadian children under the age of 18. This is based on research data from Statistics Canada and the Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS), 2014, and this includes Guelph, Wellington, Dufferin.
Food insecurity refers to inadequate or insecure access to food due to financial constraints. In Guelph, Wellington, Dufferin, it’s estimated (and acknowledged by our local school boards) that 1,500 to 1,800 children in our local schools experience severe food insecurity in their homes.
Many local school children already benefit from weekday, in-school nourishment programs such as breakfasts, snacks and/or lunches that are available to all children in the school. But for the children facing severe food insecurity at home, there is a serious gap in their access to food over weekends and during school holidays. Local food banks and food pantries are not able to cover this gap adequately, despite their best efforts due to the inability of families to access the food they require.
Food4Kids Waterloo Wellington was formed to fill a gap in the area of food security for children. When children are nourished consistently their opportunities for a better future increase and their health and well-being are positively affected. They feel like they belong in their environment, whether it is the school classroom, playground or in the greater community.