WASATCH FRONT NEWS: Salt Lake, Summit, Tooele, Utah, and Wasatch counties

Granite Education Foundation introduces culture-specific food program

Education

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4)—Granite Education Foundation has announced the introduction of a new Culture-specific Food Program.

Granite Education Foundation says they have continually evolved to best serve those who receive their student aid and food programs to help reduce the effects of food insecurity among students and their families.

The Granite Education Foundation says in 2016 they were the first education foundation to identify the plight of students (and their families) who face food insecurity and were the first to introduce in-school food pantries into Utah schools.

The foundation added that they have continued to innovate by partnering with the Utah Food Bank to provide mobile food pantries at Granite schools and rolling food pantries for schools that do not have the capacity to host a full classroom pantry.

“With more than 40,000 students and their families living at or below poverty level, and with 70% of Utah’s refugee population living within Granite School District boundaries, we recognize how critical it is for Granite Education Foundation to adapt to the needs of the families we serve,” says Brent Severe, CEO of Granite Education Foundation. “This is an important, and in many ways a natural, extension of our Food Pantry program.”

“We are excited to be working with five schools as we launch this program,” says Kim Oborn, Granite Education Foundation’s Program Coordinator. “We will be distributing culture-specific foods like corn flour, jasmine rice, oil, spices, beans, jalapenos, soy sauce, oriental noodles, tortillas, tortilla chips, etc. in rolling cages for inclusion in these five established in-school pantries. Each rolling cage carries approximately 500 pounds of non-perishable food and will be replaced on at least a monthly basis.”

There are five schools that will be participating in the pilot program which include:

  • Granger Elementary
  • Granite Park Junior High
  • Millcreek Elementary
  • Moss Elementary
  • Pioneer Elementary

As products are distributed to families in need, the foundation says they will be soliciting feedback to help them expand the program into additional schools.

Officials with the foundation said in a news release, “in this period of unique and unprecedented need, Granite Education Foundation is excited to provide a greater variety of diverse foods that are familiar and will help support the religious and dietary needs of the varied and diverse populations in our schools.”

For information on the Culture-specific Food Program or the other ways Granite Education Foundation is combating food insecurity, the public is asked to visit www.granitekids.org or call 385-646-KIDS [5437].

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