From the Ground Up, a fundraising event for schools in the Yukon, will run from October to November, this year bringing cereal and baking products to Yukon homes rather than the large veggie boxes of past campaigns.
Now in its 12th year, the event, which runs throughout Yukon communities, connects schools and early learning centres with local farmers to sell bundles of Yukon-grown food products.
Updated information for the 2023 fundraising event posted on the website says the fundraising event helps to support Yukon farmers and “proves that it is possible to have a profitable healthy choice fundraiser.”
“From the Ground Up is built on a healthy choice fundraiser model but it is more than a fundraiser. It connects farm to table, supports healthy nutrition environments and builds community,” the website reads.
Department of Education communication analyst Ken Hegan said the department has partnered with Hinterland Flour Mill to bring a handpicked selection of barley cereals and exclusive baking mix products.
Hegan said the previous campaign supplier of vegetables — Yukon Grain Farm — was unable to participate in this year’s fundraiser.
“We took the opportunity to explore and adopt new Yukon-grown food products to use as part of the fundraiser,” he said. “We value and appreciate our ongoing partnership and relationship with the local farming community. Expanding and featuring different healthy local food products is one way we can all support and stand behind our local food industry.”
This year sales will start on Oct. 16. Students and early learning centres will be selling local barley products until Nov. 6. School pick-up time will be from 3 p.m to 6 p.m. and after 3 p.m for early learning centres up to their respective closure time.
In 2022, more than 67,000 pounds of fresh Yukon vegetables were delivered to Yukoners, with 682 boxes donated to local organizations. More than $53,000 was raised for Yukon schools and early learning centres.
Available information on the website shows that more than 730,000 pounds of fresh Yukon vegetables have been delivered to Yukoners over the years of the campaign, with 6,845 boxes donated. In addition, over $547,000 has been raised for Yukon schools and early learning centres.
In 2012, the event started with a pilot program in two schools with the goals of promoting healthy nutrition environments, encouraging Yukoners to eat more locally grown and produced foods, and connecting Yukon farms to Yukon tables. Currently, there are 23 participating schools.
All Yukon schools and licensed early learning centres receive an invitation to sign up in the spring.
Participating schools then choose a coordinator. The coordinator leads the fundraiser and takes part in two meetings in June to begin preparing.
The fundraising then gets underway in the fall, with forms turned into the school or early learning centre ahead of delivery.
According to the website, schools and early learning centres receive 40 per cent of the profits. Among other benefits it’s noted the program promotes local food to students, parents, teachers, early learning centres and the community, helps out communities through the donated goods and provides recipes and nutrition tips.
Contact Patrick Egwu at email@example.com