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School apple program receives $65K boost from Prince Rupert businesses

As food prices rise, the Rotary Club initiative continues for the 2023-24 school year
From left to right: Clarice Russell of Trigon, Sandra Pond of School District 52, Ashley Daigle of the Rotary Club, Hannah Davis of Trigon, Navjot Chahal and Vansh Bedi, both Safeway employees. The Rotary Club has been opertaing the apple program for 10 years. (Photo: Seth Forward)

Prince Rupert’s Rotary Club has announced more funding toward its School District 52 apple program with the help of local businesses.

Trigon Terminals has donated $15,000 to the program per year for a total of $45,000 over three years.

Former president of the Rotary Club Ellen Witherly also pointed to a $20,000 grant from the Prince Rupert Aboriginal Community Services Society, which has helped the program continue for this school year.

With food costs skyrocketing, the apple program has seen a rise in costs to keep the apples flowing as the school year quickly approaches.

While the school district has its own breakfast and lunch initiatives, the apple program helps bring fresh produce to students’ diets, according to Witherly.

Witherly said extra funds have been needed from local businesses, as the cost of running the apple program has doubled from $15,000 to $30,000 due to food prices.

READ MORE: Hoops for apples

The program helps alleviate some local concerns about food security, according to Rob Booker, CEO at Trigon Terminals.

“Food affordability is a growing challenge around the world, including here in Prince Rupert,” he said. “This is why the long-standing commitment of the Rotary Club to lead this initiative in our community is so valued, and further, why Trigon is pleased to join with others to expand these efforts and to help ensure a more sustainable financial footing going forward.”

About the Author: Seth Forward, Local Journalism Initiative

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