Summer Pop Up Program

Summer Snack Program

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SUMMER POP UPSince mid-March everything has changed dramatically regarding the need for healthy food for students who would normally rely on our student nutrition programs at school. Since the schools closed their doors, we have revised how we do deliver food to meet this need with a mobile “Pop Up Snack” program. This summer the need for healthy food will continue to be a concern for many families and Nutrition for Learning will continue their POPUP SNACK program.

Children across Waterloo Region need us now, more than ever. This is a difficult time and the reality is many families in our community are struggling to put food on the table. We started the first week by distributing 100 bags a week and it has quickly grown to 500 bags per day and continues to grow. As well we continue to hear from teachers about the concern and the need of students who rely on our programs in their communities.

Our Pop-Up Snack Program distributes approximately 500 bags with a selection of food items that were normally available to students when Nutrition for learning programs were still in the schools such as yogurt, cheese, applesauce, healthy crackers, or cereal etc. A bag is offered to each student in a family in attendance at that location and consists of enough snacks for several days.

In addition to the snack bags and when available, we are distributing some extra food items to families such as canned beans, loaf of bread, chicken noodle soup etc. These items are not offered all the time and are only meant to enhance the snack bags. If families need more support due to food insecurity, they are directed to contact the Food Bank of Waterloo Region.

There is no registration or ID required to receive a healthy snack bag. Only one person per family is required to show up to the Pop-Up Snack location, although all family members are welcome to come out to make it an outing.

Along with providing food, the pop-up food delivery gives children a “sense of normalcy” because they recognize the trucks and aprons from school visits, and they know the people handing out the bags. “This provides a comfort level that helps children feel safe and fed, and families calm and for those parents who have lost their job due to closures during the pandemic, money is tight right now. It’s a small piece of the answer, but it’s an important piece,” – Mary D’Alton- Director of Strategic Initiatives and Operations Our pop up locations are shared via social media daily and available online at

Bins for the classroom Nutrition for Learning

Healthy Bodies – Healthy Minds

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The new school year has begun and over 23,000 students in Waterloo Region in 141 local schools will have daily access to healthy food at school again this school year thanks to the support of our donors and volunteers. 

We could not do this with out you and the approximately 2,000 volunteers  who prepare and operate the programs to  ensure students have universal access to the Bin Programsnutritious food they need at school.

Student Nutrition programs at school play a major role in building a community of students that nurture the potential in each other with healthy food options for any hunger moment and offers an equal chance of success in the classroom for all children and youth.  Teachers – Volunteers – Administrators see the impact in the classroom daily

At every grade level, classrooms are better places to learn when students have access to the food and nutrition they need. Students are more attentive, engaged and productive in the class and around the school.  The entire community benefits when schools function at a higher level.


Cathy Pither Local Hero

Local Hero

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Not every hero wears a cape. Heroic deeds don’t have to involve super strength or invisibility…just like Cathy Pither. Check it out, Brady & Tara award another Local Hero award!

Cathy Pither Local Hero…/brady-tara-award-another-local-hero



Special thanks to the Waterloo Regional Police Association, it’s because of you we can recognize people who make a

difference every day in our community!



Local Hero

Volunteer Student Tayla

Student Volunteer Spotlight

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Tayla Leythorpe, a grade 5 student in Waterloo has done a Lemonade sale, from her family’s home driveway, for the last three summers to raise money to support Nutrition for Learning.

Tayla was visiting a Waterloo school her mother, Libby Leythorpe teaches at and asked, “what are these bins full of food for?”  Libby explained that Nutrition for Learning provides the students at her school with a healthy food in each classroom in case a student gets hungry and needs a snack.  Tayla wondered why the students couldn’t just grab a snack from their lunch bags.  Libby went on to explain that sometimes students don’t bring enough food to get them through the whole day and sometimes if they do have enough in their lunches it is not as healthy as the snacks from the bin.

Tayla liked that Nutrition for Learning was providing students with these snacks and fixing these issues so kids didn’t have to worry about being hungry and they could just be kids.  Tayla could relate to feeling hungry and need a snack because she has her hunger moments after dance practice and before first nutrition break.   Tayla loves that Nutrition for learning feeds kids so their brains can learn and decided she wanted to raise money to help them.

Tayla thought the idea to have a Lemonade sale in front of her house in the summer would help her raise some money for Nutrition for Learning.  “I like knowing I can raise enough money to make change in my community”

Tayla is a bright, sweet considerate young lady.  She is quick to help others and hates to see people frown.  She just wants everyone to be happy.  This is why she has decided to donate all the money she raises each summer to Nutrition for Learning “Even a smile is a donation to a person cause your making another person smile”