Bringing Youth to the Aid of Their Community, Awesome Foundation, Newmarket Awards February Grant to the Newmarket Food Pantry

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The Newmarket Chapter of the Awesome Foundation has awarded their monthly grant to the Youth Engagement for Newmarket Food Pantry Project, submitted by Mr. Terry Alderson.

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The Newmarket Chapter of the Awesome Foundation has awarded their monthly grant to the Youth Engagement for Newmarket Food Pantry Project, submitted by Mr. Terry Alderson. The grant will be used to promote the engagement of Newmarket youth in the work of the Newmarket Food Pantry, a local not-for-profit food bank, staffed entirely by volunteers, supplying supplementary nutritional support to members of the community who, for a variety of reasons, may be unable to meet all of their dietary needs on their own.

The Youth Engagement for Newmarket Food Pantry Project is an effort to increase the participation of the young people in the community, bringing their talents and energy to the aid of the Newmarket Food Pantry. The Project hopes to run a series of social media strategy development and how-to workshops for local youth, in which participants would work on developing a creative and sustainable online presence for the Food Pantry, and be directly involved in the ongoing maintenance of the sites.

The sessions would include the development of a crowd-funding strategy. Calls for youth volunteers would be made through community stakeholders, including the Youth Centre, Neighbourhood Network, local schools, and the library. A community Launch Event would be held in March 2013, profiling youth volunteers, highlighting youth talent, and offering tours of the Food Pantry facility.

“We are eager to encourage any worthwhile project that will engage young people in the betterment of our community,” said John Lusink, Awesome Foundation, Newmarket Trustee. “We are especially proud to award the monthly grant for February to the Youth Engagement for Newmarket Food Pantry Project, because it will bring young people to the aid of Newmarket Food Pantry, whose average volunteer is currently 68 years old.”

Awesome Foundation Newmarket Trustees at the presentation: MS. Veronica Williams, Mr. John Lusink, Ms. Kirsten Eastwood, Ms. Maureen Burleson, Ms. Debra Scott, Mr. Rob Chaggares, and Mr. Alderson, holding the Grant Award.

According to Mr. Alderson’s Grant Application, “The Newmarket Food Pantry has seen a significant increase in the number of clients who use emergency food supplies, but has also experienced a decrease in the overall donations – both in food as well as financial. The average age of Food Pantry volunteers is more than 68 years old. Two primary challenges are: 1) to get more youth engaged with volunteering with the Food Bank and to increase their awareness of the needs within the community, and 2) developing an online presence through a web site and social media channels, allowing more members of the community to be aware of the Food Pantry, become involved as volunteers, and to send out alerts with specific priority needs. This past year alone for example, the Food Pantry had no stock of peanut butter, a major staple, and had to use scarce financial resources to purchase additional supplies.”

Newmarket youth, seen above, are now volunteering their talents and energies to aid in the work of the Newmarket Food Pantry.
The awarding of the Monthly Grant from the Newmarket Chapter of the Awesome Foundation took place on Tuesday, February 5th, at the office of the Newmarket Chamber of Commerce, who sponsors the local Chapter.

Trustees of the Awesome Foundation, Newmarket Chapter include, Mr. John Lusink, Royal LePage York North Realty; Mr. Gerry Anthony, Gerry Anthony Private Equity Lending; Ms. Maureen Burleson, The Montana Group; Mr. Rob Chaggares, Chaggares & Bonhomme Chartered Accountants; Ms. Kirsten Eastwood, Women's Centre of York Region; Mr. Michael Croxon, Owner of New Roads GM Dealership, Newmarket; Ms. Debra Scott, Newmarket Chamber of Commerce; Mr. Neil Stratton, Scotia McLeod; Ms. Veronica Williams, SNAP Newmarket; Ms. Jackie Playter.

The Newmarket Chapter of the Awesome Foundation awards $1000 each month to individuals or organizations that promote prosperity, education, community involvement and education to the youth of Newmarket. No idea is too small for consideration and all are encouraged to apply. Individuals or groups can apply through an online application at Awesome Foundation, Newmarket Chapter.

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