Tell Education Ministers: ALL Canadian students have a right to healthy food

My name is Candace and I'm from North Spirit Lake, a fly-in only Oji-Cree community for much of the year, with ice roads in the winter.

Eating healthy is not easy here. Because our community is fly-in most of the year, we only get supplies occasionally. When fruits and vegetables do come in, they're often already rotten.

Four million Canadians — an equivalent of 12.7% of Canadian households — have experienced some level of nutrition insecurity. In 2017, Canada ranked a shameful 37th out of the 41 richest countries in terms of household food insecurity and child obesity.

No level of food insecurity among children is acceptable, especially given the amount of food available in Canada.

Now, as a youth recreation worker in my community, I can see the power of education around food and food security. School gardens are beneficial for youth, as they foster environmental stewardship, a healthy lifestyle, improved academic achievement, and community and social development. School gardens lead to better health, education, and food literacy skills. These all contribute, in the long-term, to a reduction of marginalization and poverty.

Making food literacy a mandatory part of all school curriculums will help the next generation of Canadian youth to create a Canada strong and free from hunger.

Sign today and urge our provincial education ministers to commit to a Canada where everyone has access and knowledge of healthy, nutritious food.
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