Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 31/12/2018 (390 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Acts of giving inspire me, and the holiday season is a great time to be thinking of others.
After meeting Parusia Purohit at Mulvey School last month, it only took me about 30 seconds to realize she’s one of those special people making a difference year-round, every chance she gets. And she doesn’t take no for an answer either. This is a good thing.
A nurse practitioner by training, Ms. Purohit works on the front lines of our beleaguered health care system. She told me she had started seeing a very disturbing trend: more children in our community living with serious illnesses such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and hypertension. These challenges are slowing the children’s psychosocial development and scholastic achievement as well. In her search for answers, Ms. Purohit noticed these children frequently lacked access to adequate nutrition. It certainly makes sense that kids who don’t have enough food are going to have trouble doing their best in the classroom!
Sadly, they are just some of the 26,000 children in our province who each month don’t have the food they need and deserve. Instead of deciding the task was too large, Ms. Purohit decided to take child hunger to task. And so was born her idea of Breakfast-2-Go, a unique food program now up and running at Mulvey School. It gives simple breakfast meals to school children every Friday so they have healthy food they can prepare over the weekend with no adult supervision required.
Her idea wouldn’t have gone far without the support of willing partners at Winnipeg Harvest, the Winnipeg School Division and Breakfast Clubs of Canada.
On Nov. 8, we all celebrated the launch of the Breakfast-2-Go pilot project. A few days later, I encouraged all political parties at the Manitoba legislature to learn from the results of this pilot, and then expand the Breakfast-2-Go program across Manitoba to every school that wants to participate.
I hope that happens. Governments can and should make our lives and our communities better, not worse. Businesses have a role to play here, too. Ms. Purohit has shown we can all make a difference even as individuals.
We just have to do it.
As always, feel free to contact me at Wolseley1@yourmanitoba.ca or 204-775-8575.
Wolseley constituency report
Rob Altemeyer is the NDP MLA for Wolseley.