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(Updated 6:30 a.m., May 11)
St. Peter students collect more than 40,000 items for local food bank

By Fred Sherwin
The Orléans Star

Students from St. Peter High School unload food supplies for the Orléans Cumberland Community Resource Centre food bank collected during the school's annual Canley Cup food drive. Fred Sherwin/Photo

The Orléans Cumberland Community Resource Centre got a huge boost on May 9 when students from St. Peter High School delivered more than 40,000 non-perishable food items to the Resource Centre’s food bank as part of their annual Canley Cup food drive.

The exact amount was 40,262, surpassing last year’s total by more than 2,000 items.The non-perishable food will help the food bank provide emergency food supplies to its clients well into the fall when the next major food drive will be held.

The food was delivered by school bus and on foot as the school’s Grade 7 and 8 students were given the morning off to make the 3.5 kilometre trek from the Charlemagne Boulevard high school to the Resource Centre which is located near the Shenkman Arts Centre.

After returning back to the school, the students were treated to a BBQ lunch followed by the Canley Cup caberet which has become an annual ritual featuring skits performed by the school staff.

Resource Centre executive director Luc Ouellette says the St. Peter High School food drive is essential in enabling the food bank to serve the more than 600 clients – 45 per cent of which are children – who depend on them to get through each month.

“The food bank provides clients three to four days worth of emergency food once a month. Usually these are families which are experiencing financial distress for whatever reason and are having difficulty making ends meet after paying their rent, utilities and other essentials,” explains Ouellette.

The students have been raiding their parents’ pantries and canvassing at local grocery stores for the past three weeks in a friendly competition to see which homeroom can collect the most food and lay claim to the Canley Cup trophy. This year the Canley Cup was won by Greg Bisaillon’s Grade 7 homeroom class which collected more than 4,800 items.

The very first Canley Cup food drive was held in 1993, some 25 years ago and each year the students somehow manage to outdo themselves.

“The Grade 7s knocked it out of the park this year. They did a great job canvassing their neighbours. They did a great job going around to the grocery stores. It was a real community effort” said St. Peter principal Deborah Kealey. “Everyone from the caretaker, to the staff and even our parents contributed to the effort. Everybody was all in on it.”

A key aspect of the food drive is the social justice education component. Classes are taught about poverty in Canada and the need for foodbanks in the country and Orléans in particular.

“They’re taught that we don’t necessarily want food-banks, but we have them and we need them, and in this community we need a foodbank, which is why the food drive is so important,” says St. Peter High School vice-principal Kim Schreider.

For more information about the Orléans-Cumberland Community Resource Centre foodbank visit https://crcoc.ca/banque-alimentaire/.

(This story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local business partners.)

 

 

   
   

 




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