To support children in need, Encana provided funding for the Backpack Program offered through the Echo Inc. Food Bank, a local anti-poverty organization in San Juan County, New Mexico.
Poverty is a very real struggle for many families living in New Mexico, particularly in the Bloomfield and Blanco communities where Encana operates.
To support our San Juan County neighbors, and children in need, Encana provided funding for the Backpack Program offered through the Echo Inc. Food Bank, a local anti-poverty organization.
Backpacks containing food and information on assistance for the families, are distributed to children at the program schools. Each backpack is filled with kid-friendly, open and eat, shelf-stable foods that will last a child through the weekend, school break or holiday.
Encana stepped up to support the program in 2015, donating funds for the distribution of 797 backpacks or 9,500 meals to elementary, middle and high school students in Bloomfield and Blanco.
‘”The grant from Encana gave us the ability to supply additional backpacks when requested, and allowed us to move two Bloomfield schools off of the waiting list and into participation,” said Vicky Metheny of Echo Inc. Food Bank.
Started in 2002, the Backpack Program distributes food to children who school personnel feel are at risk of going home to empty cupboards. The program assists the area’s most vulnerable neighbors when they need it most.
“None of us function well without adequate nutrition,” Metheny noted, “and studies show that going even a relatively short time without proper nutrition during developmental years has long term impacts on our cognitive abilities.”
“Many of the families this program helps have lost their jobs or their homes. Plus a number of these chronically underemployed or unemployed, low-income families also have transportation issues. The Backpack Program provides an effective way to get food into the home quickly while the food bank and the schools work to connect the families to more permanent community resources.“
“The children and families are so grateful to have folks in their community who show they care,” Metheny said.
In our operating areas in Canada and the USA, Encana is a long standing supporter of local food banks and the good work they provide to our neighbors in surrounding communities. Find out more.