Regional Contact Details

Toronto Foundation for Student Success

Catherine Parsonage, Executive Director and CEO

(416) 394-7475

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Regional Summary

More than 600,000 children and youth participate in breakfast, snack and lunch programs in communities across Ontario.  These programs are supported, in part, by the Ministry of Children and Youth Services and delivered through 14 Lead Agencies. All of our nutrition programs are strongly rooted in our local communities. Our programs rely heavily on volunteers, local fundraising, parental contributions and donations.

The Ontario Student Nutrition Program Network brings together all of the Lead Agencies and local partnerships to share best practices, share information and address issues concerning nutrition programs with a collective voice.

Steering Committee Members In Ontario

Toronto Foundation for Student Success

Catherine Parsonage, Executive Director and CEO

(416) 394-7475

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Founded in 1998, The Toronto Foundation for Student Success (TFSS) is the independent registered charitable foundation of the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) created to ensure that all students are ready and able to learn in classrooms. TFSS operates independently from the TDSB. TFSS acts as an advocate for students, identifying and initiating programs to deal with the hunger, poverty and violence experienced by students and our programs have expanded over the years as the need has escalated. The Toronto Foundation for Student Success is a member of the Toronto Partners for Student Nutrition. Together (Toronto Public Health, The Toronto District School Board, the Toronto Catholic District School Board, the Angel Foundation for Learning and Foodshare), provide more than 170,000 children and adolescents in over 750 local breakfast, lunch and snack programs. The Toronto District School Board (TDSB) is the largest school Board in Canada and the fourth largest in North America. We have nearly 600 schools and more than 250,000 students enrolled in our Board. TDSB is committed to supporting the more than 600 nutrition programs in our schools. Each day more than 124,000 student participate in our programs. Evaluation undertaken by our Research Department clearly demonstrates the academic, social and health impacts of nutrition programs and we are continuing to measure long term outcomes.

Toronto District School Board

Robin Pilkey, Chair

(416) 395-8787

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The Toronto District School Board is the largest school Board in Canada and the fourth largest in North America. We have nearly 600 schools and serve more than 250,000 students each year.

Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers' Association

Alison Robertson, Program Manager and Special Projects Coordinator

(519) 763-6160 ext. 121

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The OFVGA is dedicated to the advancement of horticulture, working proactively through effective lobbying for the betterment of the industry and its farmers as a whole through advocacy, research, education, communication, and marketing. The Association has a clear mandate to be the “voice” for its 7,500 Ontario farmers at governmental affairs, national and international bodies, and to seek resolution of issues affecting its membership throughout the year. The lobbying efforts of the association encompass all government agencies at both the provincial and federal levels. The association is recognized as the official horticultural organization for Ontario, representing all fruit, vegetable, greenhouse vegetable farmers, and industry members. The OFVGA is responsible for the procurement and distribution of 36,000 servings of fruits and vegetables every week throughout the school year to schools participating in the Northern School Fruit & Vegetable Program (Ministry of Health, Ontario). Alison Robertson, program manager at OFVGA, is chair of Horticulture for Health, a working group of the Horticulture Value Chain Roundtable. OFVGA is working towards developing partnerships between Canadian horticulture and food programming for children and youth in remote, rural, and urban communities.

Members In Ontario

FoodShare Toronto

Since our formation in 1985, FoodShare Toronto has organized grass roots student nutrition programs, supporting the vision of universal cost shared programs. As a member of the Toronto Partners for Student Nutrition (Toronto Public Health, The Toronto District School Board, the Toronto Catholic District School Board, the Toronto Foundation for Student Success, the Angel Foundation for Learning and community partners) we help facilitate 720 local programs which serve 141,000 meals a day. Our Fresh Produce Program provides affordable bulk healthy vegetables and fruit to 285 student nutrition programs reaching 67,000 children weekly. Our Field to Table Schools program work with educators, parents, and students from JK through Grade 12 to implement hands-on cooking and gardening activities with the goal of making food literacy a requirement of graduation and our Good Food Café demonstrates a healthy sustainable cafeteria program. FoodShare partners with Sustain Ontario’s Child and Youth Food Network, Food Secure Canada’s Children and Food Network, and Farm to Cafeteria Canada to increase food literacy and access to locally produced foods in schools where possible.

Debbie Field, Executive Director

416 363-6441 ext 228

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Toronto Public Health

Toronto Public Health (TPH) works in many ways to improve the overall health of the population and to overcome health inequalities. We provide services to individuals and communities, and we advocate for public policies that make our city healthier. TPH services are funded by City Council and the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. We are governed by the Board of Health, comprised of elected councillors and citizen representatives. We strive to make our services accessible and equitable to all residents of Toronto.

Denise Vavaroutsos, Supervisor, Student Nutrition Program


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The Children's Foundation of Guelph and Wellington

Food and Friends is a community partnership in Wellington, Dufferin and Guelph that encourages all children to eat well in order to positively affect their ability to learn.

Anita Macfarlane, Community Program Director


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Superior Children's Centre

Superior Children’s Centre is Wawa’s principal provider of early learning and quality licenced child care for children aged 0-12 years. Since 1984, Superior Children’s Centre has been planning, delivering and coordinating an ever expanding range of services in North Algoma and throughout Algoma District as well as the Algoma-Manitoulin provincial riding. The agency offers a range of programs in both official languages and at various locations to serve children, parents/caregivers and other practitioners who serve families. The organization is a progressive agency committed to ensuring that children, families, colleagues and community are provided with opportunities to reach their potential. The Centre provides services that meet the highest standards, while respecting individual and unique needs. The agency opened the first Best Start Hub in Algoma with a second Francophone hub opening in Wawa in October 2008. As part of Algoma’s Best Start Network, the Centre also operates Hubs in conjunction with its existing programs in White River, Dubreuilville, and Hornepayne. Superior Children Centre currently employs twenty two full time and fourteen part time employees and has an eight member board of directors.

Robin Marshall, Student Nutrition Program Coordinator- North Algoma


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YMCA of Kitchener-Waterloo

The YMCA of Kitchener-Waterloo is the lead agency for the Student Nutrition programs in the Central West Region of Ontario. We work directly with 4 Community Partners to deliver quality nutrition programs in our region.

Cyndy Jefferson, Regional Coordinator

519-741-8585 ext. 223

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The Ottawa Network for Education

The Ottawa Network for Education (ONFE) facilitates dialogue and action to support public education in our community – from Kindergarten to PhD! In partnership with local school boards, colleges, universities and other stakeholders, we develop and implement collaborative initiatives that leverage community resources to support student learning at all levels. We do this by bringing people, organizations, and resources together in innovative ways to achieve what no single organization could do alone.

Carolyn Hunter, Director of Programs

613-366-3085 x254

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Breakfast for Kids

Breakfast for Kids works to ensure children and youth in the Region of Peel attend school well nourished and ready to learn. We currently support over 180 breakfast, snack and lunch programs and serve just over 12,000 students. We provide a warm and safe environment where children and youth can develop healthy eating habits that will last a lifetime.

Kelly Stronach, Program Manager


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