A Regina boy is helping to give a boost to kids just like him, by helping them learn to cook.
Ten-year-old Christopher Schnider was selected for the Sobeys’ Kids Paying-It-Forward program in June. He was given a $500 Sobeys gift card to donate to a charity of his choice, and he picked the North Central Family Centre.
The centre is a place for kids, youth and families to go. Fifty to 60 children are fed at the centre every day from Monday to Friday. The centre also makes food hampers and has a cooking program for kids.
Schnider picked the center because his mom grew up near it and knows the benefits of a place like it, especially if it means children have a safe place to go.
“I want the kids to have food, they do a whole bunch of activities and crafts, and they cook and stuff. I just didn’t want the kids to starve,” Schnider said.
He said if feels good to be able to give back to kids just like him.
Sandy Wankel, executive director of the centre, said it came as a fantastic surprise when they found out the news.
“This wonderful gift couldn’t be more appropriate for our centre,” she said.
The donation will go towards the centre’s supper program.
“In that program, its’ really great because our older kids actually help us get groceries, cook the meal and clean up afterwards, teaching responsibility and how we’re all a part of it and we work together,” Wankel said.
The impact on the kids is tremendous and Wankel said it builds character for the future and it creates leadership skills.
The Canada Screams for Ice Cream campaign
The Regina Food Bank also received a donation thanks to The Canada Screams for Ice Cream campaign. The food bank sees around 9,500 food requests per month, and 47 per cent of that are children.
Joan Zook, owner of the Emerald Park IGA, said staff from the store and food bank were on hand on June 24 to sell ice cream for a donation. In six hours, the store raised $1,446.55 for the food bank.
“The real key part was the awareness we were able to take to our staff and our customers that there’s kids out there in the community that have nowhere to go, no food in the summertime, the schools are shut down, the kids have lots of time on their hands and they have no food,” Zook said.
With kids being picked to donate to a charity of their choice, Zook said she was happy to see Schnider pick The North Central Family Centre.
“You look at our youth, and their our future, and when we can create the awareness in our young people that there’s other kids out there that have no food, and for Chris to donate some time and come out, it’s just awesome,” Zook said.
The Regina Food Bank was happy to receive the donation. Shelly Armbruster, community engagement coordinator for the food bank, said it’s great to see the community giving back.
“It’s fantastic, especially during the summertime, people just aren’t as giving because they have other things on their mind, they’re going on vacation. Our food insecurities are down so this [donation] helps us throughout the summer to help put food on the table for kids,” Armbruster said.
The donation will go towards purchasing food.
“We couldn’t ask for better feedback, for the help that we get from our community, it’s overwhelmingly important,” Armbruster said.