Feeding Kids Beyond The School Week
When hundreds of students in Calgary were identified as living in food insecure households, the Calgary Board of Education school-based partnership, Weekends and More, was created. Since 2014, students have received nutritious food hampers containing two to three days’ worth of food that discreetly fits into a backpack. This program works to help alleviate hunger and the stigma of food insecurity in students. By providing Weekends and More hampers to participating schools, staff and teachers can support students who are struggling with access to nutritious food on weekends.
Food insecurity can have lasting and devastating effects, especially on younger populations. Food insecurity leads to attention problems, poor grades, chronic health conditions, nutrient deficiencies, and even depression. Feeding students has a positive impact on their academics, social interactions, and health, and Weekends and More helps to ensure that hunger is not a barrier to learning.
Weekends and More hampers are a catalyst for students and staff to have a conversation about life at home to help identify the root cause of their food insecurity. Reasons can be as simple as a family not being aware a food bank or other services exist. Teachers at participating schools assess students and determine who would benefit from receiving a hamper.
Community Partner Conditions
Schools must receive approval from their school board to participate in the program. It is critical for a school to assign at least one staff member to liaise with the program staff, submit weekly hamper orders, coordinate hamper distribution to students, oversee student enrolment, and submit timely quarterly reports to the program staff.
What’s In A Hamper?
All hampers include two to three days’ worth of shelf stable, easy to prepare and ready to eat items with a balance of all the food groups. This includes meals for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. Food items come from an approved list created with the help of Alberta Health Services dietitians.
Consider donating our most needed Weekends and More hamper items.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I join the Weekends and More Program?
For more information, please contact:
P: 403-253-2059 Ext. 230
How are students identified to be part of the program?
Teachers at each participating school assess students and determine those that would benefit from receiving a Weekends and More hamper.
Are the hampers delivered?
Weekend and More hampers are delivered by the Calgary Food Bank to each participating school. Teachers at each school are responsible for providing a hamper to the appropriate student before they go home for the weekend.
How does reporting work for the program?
We require schools accessing the Weekends and More Program to provide regular feedback. When we track the impact, structure and value of the program, we can work best to suit your school’s and the community’s needs. Reporting is a mandatory part of accessing the program and failing to submit surveys on time may result in losing access to the program.
To update your school’s contact information for this reporting, please contact:
P: 403-253-2059, ext. 230