FILE PHOTO Aldergrove Secondary student volunteers bag and pack the Starfish backpacks every Thursday for delivery on Fridays.

FILE PHOTO Aldergrove Secondary student volunteers bag and pack the Starfish backpacks every Thursday for delivery on Fridays.

Aldergrove Starfish ready for ‘back to school’

Rotary Club program provides weekend food for 60 Aldergrove students

It’s time to start putting away the camping gear and thinking about books, E-tablets and what to pack for lunch.

For some kids in Aldergrove, lunch menus are only part of their concern, however. What about breakfast? And dinner? And what about weekend meals?

For students who need some extra support, daily meal programs are offered Monday to Friday in the Aldergrove schools. And thanks to the Aldergrove Rotary Club Starfish backpack program, weekend meals have been provided too.

Every Friday, kids in need, who have been identified by the schools, grab their special Starfish backpack that’s full of nutritious and easy-to-prepare meals and head home, knowing they won’t be hungry all weekend.

Three and a half years ago, the fledgling Starfish program started with 10 backpacks in one elementary school. Today, 60 backpacks from three elementary schools and one middle school make their way home every Friday afternoon to ensure that families aren’t going hungry.

Since its beginning in Aldergrove, over 7,400 Starfish backpacks have been filled. This couldn’t have happened without the tremendous support of major donors like Aldergrove Credit Union, Otter Co-op, Jazz Pilots for Kids, Clover Towing, Valley Traffic Systems and the ongoing support of many Rotarians, local individuals and businesses.

In addition, the hairdressing students at Aldergrove Community Secondary School volunteered to help, and every Thursday afternoon, they are part of the team filling the backpacks. The ongoing success of the program also couldn’t have happened without the excellent partnership Starfish has with the Otter Co-op and Save-on Foods, the primary food suppliers.

Heading into another school year, the Starfish team at the Aldergrove Rotary Club is grateful for the financial support the program has received since it started and is hopeful the generosity of the Aldergrove community will continue, ensuring that no kids will turn up at school Monday mornings hungry this school year.

The cost for one backpack for one child for the whole school year is $525. For more information about the Aldergrove Starfish Program, or to donate online, please visit: www.aldergrovestarfish.ca/.

Donations can also be made by mailing a cheque to the Aldergrove Rotary Club, P.O. Box 1602, Aldergrove, BC V4W 2V1. Be sure to write Starfish program on the memo section of the cheque.

 

FILE PHOTO North Otter Elementary school is the most recent addition to the Aldergrove Rotary Club’s Starfish backpack program that supplies 60 Aldergrove-area students in need with weekend food.

FILE PHOTO North Otter Elementary school is the most recent addition to the Aldergrove Rotary Club’s Starfish backpack program that supplies 60 Aldergrove-area students in need with weekend food.

FILE PHOTO Aldergrove Secondary student volunteers bag and pack the Starfish backpacks every Thursday for delivery on Fridays.

FILE PHOTO Aldergrove Secondary student volunteers bag and pack the Starfish backpacks every Thursday for delivery on Fridays.

FILE PHOTO Aldergrove Secondary student volunteers bag and pack the Starfish backpacks every Thursday for delivery on Fridays.

FILE PHOTO Aldergrove Secondary student volunteers bag and pack the Starfish backpacks every Thursday for delivery on Fridays.

FILE PHOTO Volunteers go shopping every week for the Aldergrove Rotary Club’s Starfish backpack program that supplies 60 Aldergrove-area students in need with weekend food.

FILE PHOTO Volunteers go shopping every week for the Aldergrove Rotary Club’s Starfish backpack program that supplies 60 Aldergrove-area students in need with weekend food.