Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search

 


Hungry Start to School Year for Many Kiwi Kids

Media release February 2, 2009


Hungry Start to School Year for Many Kiwi Kids

Today signals the first day back at school for Kiiwi kids but according to KidsCan StandTall Charitable Trust at least 12,000 of them will arrive with rumbling tummies and empty lunchboxes.

KidsCan StandTall Charitable Trust is a children’s charity dedicated to meeting the basic physical needs of financially disadvantaged children.

Already the charity feeds more than 8,500 children a week through its crisis “Food For Kids” programme which allows teachers in low decile schools to discreetly provide food for hungry children to help them learn.

The charity’s General Manager Julie Helson says there are a further 12,000 kids on the waiting list who are desperately in need of the food programme.

“I think in a country rich in food production resources like ours this is unacceptable. I’ve attended schools and made the mistake of thinking they had a preschool onsite – this wasn’t the case at all. Sadly these were primary school-aged children who hadn’t developed at a normal physical rate because of malnutrition.”

Helson says KidsCan StandTall wants to give New Zealand children the best possible foundation for learning. This means providing crisis food packs, raincoats to keep them dry and shoes to protect their feet through its various programmes.

Seventy five pallets of non-perishable food donated by Tasti, Watties, James Crisp and Natures Food were last week shipped to 96 participating schools from Kaitaia to Invercargill.

The principal of Auckland’s Waterview Primary School Brett Skeen says the “Food For Kids” programme has proved a valuable initiative for his students.

Skeen says the desperate behavior caused by a lack of food has significantly reduced in his school since the programme’s inception.

“The kids aren’t stealing one another’s lunches now because they’re no longer hungry . It’s reducing social issues and we’ve noticed higher concentration levels in the classroom.”

Helson says she’d like to see more schools and their students benefit from the
“Food For Kids” programme and is meeting with the Government next week to discuss how they can work together to help New Zealand children reach their full potential.

“Our programmes provide direct intervention which gets underprivileged kids to school and through school. Good nutrition is key in order to help children learn and grow and education is the foundation for a better future for them,” she says.

The Minister for Social Development & Employment and Youth Affairs, Hon Paula Bennett says she shares KidsCan’s goal of ensuring Kiwi children don’t miss out on food, clothing and a standard of living adequate for their health and well-being.

“Our kids are our future and deserve the best possible start in life. While that responsibility primarily lies with parents, the work that KidsCan does for those families who need a bit more help, is invaluable. It’s a great example of a community approach to a very real problem,” she says.

Over the past three years KidsCan StandTall Charitable Trust has provided 24,000 free adidas All Blacks raincoats and 4,000 pairs of shoes and distributed 240,000 items of food a year to disadvantaged Kiwi kids.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
Ray Columbus: NZ Music Icon Passes Away

60s New Zealand music Icon Ray Columbus has passed away peacefully at his home north of Auckland... Ray Columbus enjoyed more than three decades at the top of NZ entertainment as a singer, songwriter, bandleader, music manager and TV star. More>>

Review: Bernard Herrmann's Scores For 'Vertigo' & 'Psycho'

Howard Davis: The NZSO's adventurousness was richly-rewarded, as the deeply appreciative Wellington audience was given the opportunity not only to see a couple of Alfred Hitchcock's greatest films, but also to hear fine renditions of two of Bernard Herrmann's most accomplished film scores. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Leonard Cohen

If Bob Dylan owned the 1960s, Leonard Cohen was an inescapable presence during the early 1970s period, pre-disco and pre-punk. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Review Of Books: Pick And Camera

Through the eyes of a miner – the photography of Joseph Divis: The occupations of miner and photographer are seldom combined. The conjunction must have been very rare indeed in the era before hand-held cameras, high-speed film and flashlights More>>


Howard Davis: Review - The Cosmic Dance Of 'String Theory'

Fly My Pretties sixth album is quite possibly their best yet - a concept album in the best sense, with superb arrangements, funky grooves, and some great vocalizing, all organized around the lyrical leitmotif of string theory. More>>

Non-Natural History: Dinosaur Eggs 'Discovered' At Auckland Gardens

Auckland Botanic Gardens plant curators have unearthed what are thought to be prehistoric dinosaur eggs in the Gondwana Forest section of the expansive garden in Manurewa... In fact, the “dinosaur eggs” are part of an innovative, larger-than-life dinosaur performance and display featuring a raptor, a crested therapod and a towering Tyrannosaurus Rex. More>>

For The Birds: Kōkako Crowned Bird Of The Year

The Kōkako has been crowned New Zealand's Bird of the Year after two weeks of close competition and heated campaigning. More>>

ALSO:

  • Greening the Red Zone - Bird of the year heats up: kōtare concedes, backs kea
  • Image Out-Link - Giselle Clarkson on Twitter
  • Get More From Scoop

     
     

    LATEST HEADLINES

     
     
     
     
    Education
    Search Scoop  
     
     
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news