The Breakfast Club of Canada, along with national ambassadors NHL goaltender Carey Price and his wife, Angela Price, raised $161,000 at a benefit dinner July 15 at Kelowna’s Mission Hill Winery.
All funds will stay in B.C. and will be used in support of breakfast programs across the province.
During the private dinner Carey delivered an emotional speech taking the time to recognize the courage of young Trent Leon — the star of a recent Air Canada Foundation/BCC video — who drove all the way from Anahim Lake, Carey’s hometown, with his grandmother, Susan Leon and her daughter, Fannie.
“Proud of my roots, I have long waited to give back to my community in a concrete and lasting manner,” Carey said to the some 200 guests at the dinner.
“Thanks to the expertise and flexibility of the Breakfast Club, I was able to do just that.”
Carey’s goal as the club’s National First Nations, Metis and Inuit Ambassador, is to bring awareness to the issue of children arriving at school hungry and the impact this has on their behaviour and classroom performance.
“In addition, we are helping support children across the nation and the positive impact is short- and long-term because we are also feeding dreams and the ability to dream is the beginning of success.”
Carey and Angela have now opened two breakfast programs in Anahim Lake and have also visited breakfast programs throughout the country and hosted an annual benefit gala in the Okanagan.
During the benefit dinner Grand Chief Ed John also spoke to Trent and his bravery.
Trent, Susan and Fannie stayed in Kelowna for two nights before returning home to Anahim Lake.
BCC president and founder Daniel Germain said Carey and Angela are strong role models for youth in Canada.
“With one in five students in B.C. going to school hungry and one in seven children in Canada living in a home where they are at risk of going hungry, advocates like Carey are instrumental in helping children grow and flourish,” Germain said. “We are grateful they have chosen BCC as their charity.”
BCC currently supports 130 school breakfast programs in B.C. and, in 2014, BCC served healthy breakfasts to nearly 152,000 students in schools across the country.