FOOD INITIATIVE The Penny Lane Pack Program is sponsored by Penny Lane Legacy Fund, supported by Summerland IGA and has volunteer help from the community. From left are Colin Powell of Summerland IGA, Or Robson of the Penny Lane Legacy Fund, project organizer Linda Van Alphen and Bruce Hallquist of the Penny Lane Legacy Fund. (John Arendt/Summerland Review)

Program provides food for Summerland children and families

Penny Lane Pack Program supplies children with food for the weekend

A community initiative will provide food for Summerland children and families in need.

The Penny Lane Pack Program, sponsored by Penny Lane Legacy Fund, Summerland IGA and community volunteers, was developed to support children between the ages of five to 11 who need more food at home.

Each student is given a backpack at the end of the week.

The pack holds two days worth of food and small treats for the weekend. There is enough to share some with the family.

Volunteers do the shopping, fill the backpacks and have them on school at the end of the school day on Friday, or on Thursday if Friday is a holiday.

Linda Van Alphen, coordinator of the program, said the concept was developed after she saw similar programs in other B.C. communities.

Penny Lane offered to fund the program, and Summerland IGA also gave support.

In addition, community members have given support to the initiative. Some students from Summerland Secondary School have volunteered their time to help pack the food each week.

“We’ve just been inundated with people who want to help because they see that this is a really good program,” she said.

The program will begin at Giant’s Head Elementary School and is expected to expand from there.

“We’re very happy that we’re at this point,” Van Alphen said.

Orv Robson of Penny Lane said the organization is pleased to be part of the pack program

“It’s going to be a great opportunity for our community to see what we can do for younger people that do not have the food nutrition that we can provide for them,” he said. “I think it will be a good program.”

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