Regina Food for Learning was incorporated in 1988 and began operating on April 4, 1989. We started with a breakfast program at Core Ritchie for children from St. Augustine and Wetmore Schools. At that time Food for Learning was established by ordinary Regina citizens who were concerned about hungry children in our city. These people formed the volunteer base for the Board of Directors and breakfast program providers. There was no stable funding in place, and many of the groceries came from the Food Bank.
The Mayor’s Task Force and the Regina Child Hunger Coalition was in full swing and the city of Regina offered the half-time services of a city health department nutritionist for one year. The nutritionist worked very closely with Food for Learning to set up menus, which were both nutritionally sound and economical. In fact after her contracted services she joined our Board of Directors as one of our strongest supporters.
The first year of operation was a real learning experience. We were very fortunate to have some very talented and committed people involved. We started with a breakfast program but soon realized that although breakfast is a very important meal each day, we would reach more children with a lunch program. We also found it easier to access the necessary volunteers at 10 a.m. instead of 7 a.m. The first year saw an expansion of services from one program to eight. Since then we’ve served as many as 14 different programs at one time.
Regina Food For Learning has now been feeding hungry children for over 30 years and continues to offer flexible breakfast, lunch, and snack programming to schools throughout the city.
Is RFFL associated with other feeding programs or the Food Bank?
Regina Food For Learning is not directly associated with other feeding programs. Initially, Regina Food For Learning worked closely with the Regina Food Bank to help with grocery purchases. Until 1991, donations from individuals, service clubs, churches and businesses made up a good portion of our funding, with the balance coming from different fundraising ventures.
In 1991, REACH (Regina Education and Action on Child Hunger) was formed to oversee the distribution of funds from provincial and civic sources and support groups who provide meals and snacks to children and others in our community. A significant portion of our funding is now provided by REACH. With this added financial stability, we no longer rely on the Food Bank. However, the Food Bank still provides support by donating kitchen supplies through their reclamation program.