Due to pandemic, one in three Canadian kids now at risk of going to school hungry
This coming school year is fraught with concerning questions about health and safety. But one of the most challenging issues facing children in the classroom cannot be solved with masks or social distancing. This year, more children than ever will be going to school on an empty stomach, as the impact of COVID-19 hits homes across the nation. Canadian kids need our help.
According to Breakfast Club of Canada, one in three Canadian children risk arriving at school hungry this year – a drastic increase from one in four children just prior to the pandemic. This means more than two million children in Canada will not have enough food during this school year. In fact, a recent Kellogg Canada survey reveals that 34 per cent of us are finding it more challenging to provide our family with balanced meals since the pandemic began. This may prevent Canadian kids from reaching their full potential, as hunger can impair a child’s learning, productivity, and social skills.
In response, Kellogg Canada is introducing an easy way to help Canadians’ make a difference with its new Free Box and Give Back promotion, further strengthening the Company’s commitment to fighting hunger and food insecurity. When shoppers buy two boxes of specially-marked Kellogg’s cereals or snack bars, they will receive a coupon for a free box of the same for their household, and Kellogg Canada will donate $1, up to a maximum of $100,000, to its hunger relief partners who are helping create Better Days for millions of children across Canada.
As our nation has seen throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we are ready to come together to help our neighbours. The Kellogg survey reveals that 77 per cent of respondents are likely to purchase a food product that gives back to the community. The Kellogg Canada Free Box and Give Back promotion will help raise much needed funds and awareness. And never in recent history has this help been more essential, with many Canadians experiencing added financial pressure due to the health crisis. The Kellogg Canada Better Days Survey found that:
- 67 per cent of Canadians could identify at least one group who needs financial assistance due to the impact of COVID-19 and the related challenges;
- almost one quarter of respondents (23 per cent) indicated that their family needs financial support; and,
- another third of Canadians (31 per cent) feel that families in their neighbourhood need assistance.
“It is frightening how we have seen food insecurity rising since the pandemic began,” says Lisa Clowery, Director Corporate Partnerships, Breakfast Club of Canada. “As children head back to school, we can’t let hunger get in their way. Our future depends on all of us helping these kids get the right start to every school day – whatever that day may look like in their region this year.”