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Westpac adds support to school breakfast programme

Thursday 4 March 2010 | Published in Regional

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Westpac donated $26,000 to Red Cross for the Aitutaki schools breakfast programme yesterday.

“We looked at what would make the most difference in terms of community assistance and the school breakfast programme is a morale booster for the community. The children are all getting a good breakfast in the morning to be able to continue with their education and we think this is what parents want for them,” said Westpac manager operations James Mastapha.

The breakfast programme began last Wednesday and will continue for at least six weeks, says Red Cross secretary general Niki Rattle.

She says over 500 students and 37 teachers are receiving the free breakfast – cereal, bread, fruit, and milk – at all four Aitutaki schools.

Red Cross and community volunteers have been providing the programme that aims to boost children’s spirits as they return to normal activities and also provides a nutritious meal to help with concentration and learning.

“We are seeing a difference in the children coming to school. The most amazing thing yesterday was they were in uniform after coming to school for a week in mufti. We can see the normality falling into place again.”

Rattle said Red Cross was grateful for the support from Westpac Bank. - HG