The Sooke Lions and Harbourside Lions clubs are ramping up their support for local schools.
The latest benificiary is Journey Middle School, which received a dishwasher and grill.
The donations go towards improving the school’s in-house initiative to feed students who arrive at the school with empty stomachs.
“There are children that don’t have lunches, so we looked into it and realized, if one school suffers, what about the others?” said Harbourside Lion Jane Beddows.
Both the dishwasher and grill will help school volunteers prepare breakfast and lunch faster and more efficiently, as there won’t be any pile of dirty dishes to work through anymore.
In addition, they can now make pancakes and French toast.
“This isn’t in their [volunteers] job description to do this, and only have a limited amount of time, so for them to wash dishes after takes them away from their other duties. That’s where the dishwasher comes in,” said Lion Al Beddows.
The idea spawned from the Harbourside Lions’ school liaison program, where Lion members go in every week and feed one of the four schools in town. A club liaison is assigned to each school.
While the new additions are welcome, Journey’s volunteers Shelley Crowley, an education assistant, and Laurie Gibson, an aboriginal support worker, made do as-is, coming in early every morning on their own time and preparing breakfast for those needy (and growling) bellies out there.
Both women have been doing the breakfast program at Journey for a year.
“They’re always welcome here, because we don’t want kids to go into class hungry,” Gibson said, highlighting the fact that any Journey student in need should come down.
“There are still kids out there who haven’t come in, but need to,” she said.
More kids are taking advantage of the initiative as well. With the new equipment, things will get easier. At one point, Gibson noted there were 30 pancakes on the go for 15 kids.
As cereals are in high demand, donations are welcome. For more info, call Journey Middle School at: 250-642-5881.