Foodshare loses 20 student positions; funding for school summer programs in question

The PC government has eliminated a program that gave 20 vulnerable students work and free-time programming at FoodShare Toronto. Summer jobs at Toronto schools are also on hold because the province cut $25 million from education programming.

Foodshare is located just outside of Mount Dennis. It “ prioritizes students who are behind in credits, newcomers, students from low-income families, racialized students and students with learning disabilities”, according to Faisal Hassan, who criticized the decision to cut funding at Queen’s Park this week. The students are “employed, supported and mentored”. FoodShare  provides “them with the opportunity to earn money, job skills and up to two co-op credits.”

Hassan asked the Minister of Education, Lisa Thompson, why the government is “turning its back on organizations like FoodShare, which arm students with the skills to allow them to succeed in today’s workplace”.

Thompson repeatedly dodged the question. Instead of answering with details about FoodShare or the Focus on Youth program, she spoke rather nonsensically about McDonald’s accepting applications over Snapchat—apparently not noticing the irony of putting screens and grease over Foodshare’s focus on healthy fruits and veg.

Author: Adam Norman

I am raising my two children in Weston.

4 thoughts on “Foodshare loses 20 student positions; funding for school summer programs in question”

  1. This is terrible. PC governance in action is horrifying and destroying useful, established programs that give students jobs and keep food waste out of landfill and ensure that people who need food have access to that food.

    Shame.Report

  2. No question, a loss.
    (And yes, I took a quick glance at their annual statements – but, got drowsy.)

    Nevertheless, and let’s says that their expenditure data is in order for a non-profit, this would be a lost, teachable opportunity – that in a perfect world, should be encouraging & demonstrating why, how and where to make the best healthy choices for you and your loved ones.

    By thinking (as the minister does and notes) that a large corporate fast food industry partner will educate & provide important life skills to a few young people, is a bit myopic.

    Sure, with few jobs around one might find benefits serving up Big Macs.

    Depending on the length of tenure, it’d be better than a blank on a resume.

    But, what happens when that “student” takes some of those hard earned pennies and then has to make choices for their own kitchen & pantry in between work days – where you might just score a meal on the side?

    What about “grocery” shopping, within a so-called, “food desert” or “food swamp”?

    Yeah, a 2 km walk (there & back) would be decent bit exercise. But, how many folks play those creative games of: walking to the local No Frills’ produce department to score the healthiest food, and then back to whip up a lovely, basic meal for themselves, friends & family?

    Not easy.

    And, we’re all basically lazy, right?

    Even those of us of relatively, more means make poor choices – despite being safety netted by our OHIP cards when Type 2 Diabetes and heart disease comes a calling.

    Needless to say, that’s a whole different government spending issue & problem – that the Premier should really better consider – having recently admitted, in jest, that he hasn’t missed too many spaghetti dinners!

    If not Foodshare helping and providing encouragement, then at least make these awareness building skills mandatory in our schools – and don’t take your foot off the gas!

    To paraphrase my late father-in-law,
    “.. you might not live any longer, but it just might seem that way.”

    Better to do it with fresh veg than big pharma.Report

  3. BTW..

    Has anyone else noticed the very large signage on the now defunct, “Greenland Farms” grocery store, in town?

    “Opening Soon. Under Renovation”, posters are plastered all over the windows & doors. (?)Report

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