Student nutrition programs provide healthy meals and snacks to children and youth. Every day, 194,000 Toronto students participate in these breakfast, snack and lunch programs. Each student nutrition program is unique and a reflection of its community; they are operated in schools and community sites by volunteers and staff.
Student nutrition programs can't replace adequate income support, but they do:
- Provide nutrients and energy so that students are ready to learn and participate in school.
- Create healthier eating habits.
- Help prevent obesity.
- Support better scores in math, reading and science.
City of Toronto Funding for Student Nutrition Programs
Unfortunately, at this time it is not possible to award a grant to all qualified applicants or to all programs that received a grant in the past.
The City of Toronto awards grants to some school communities to help them offer a healthy meal or snack to their students. The goal of the grant is to help programs serve healthier foods and operate more days a week.
- Funding covers only a small portion of total program costs and is based on individual program needs.
- Most funding for programs comes from parental contributions and local fundraising.
Proof That Student Nutrition Programs Improve Learning
Student nutrition programs are a cost effective way to promote health and learning among students. Take a look at these reports describing student nutrition programs in Toronto and other cities.
- Future directions for student nutrition programs in Toronto, including international research. Toronto Public Health: Nourishing Young Minds, June 2012 (PDF).
- A municipal funding plan to ensure stable funding for programs and to expand funding for new student nutrition programs in Toronto, endorsed by Toronto's Board of Health: Student Nutrition Program: 2016 Operating Budget Request and Municipal Funding Plan to 2018 (PDF)
- Impacts of student nutrition programs. Easwaramoorthy Muthuswamy, Feeding Our Future: The First- and Second-Year Evaluation, March 2012(PDF). Toronto District School Board.