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Live Free Day totals shy of $45,000 target

Though Live Free Day was officially the last day of February, the campaign’s not over. The Children’s Foundation of Guelph and Wellington still has hopes of reaching its campaign goal of raising $45,000 for student nutrition programs.
“We are just over $30,000 with nine schools left to celebrate their Live Free day,” foundation events and marketing manager Kristen Drexler said in an email. “We are still encouraging people to visit the Live Free website at www.livefreewdg.ca to make donations.”
The campaign encourages community members and students to give something up and donate money toward the Food and Friends program, which provides school meals and snacks to kids who would otherwise go hungry.
Most community members completed their pledges in February, but some were completing pledges this month, said Drexler. Some schools were also holding fundraising days this month, so the foundation is hopeful about reaching its goal, she said.
Guelph resident Jason Clattenburg completed his Live Free pledge at the end of February – a chilly week for most but an especially chilly week for him.
Clattenburg had pledged to give up his bed and spend five nights sleeping in his shed to raise awareness for the campaign.
“I think I created a buzz and got people talking about Live Free and about the food programs,” said Clattenburg in an email. In the end, he made it through four nights in the shed.
“On the fifth night, it was deadly cold out, so I opted to sleep inside,” he said. “I still gave up my bed and slept on the basement floor.”
He documented his experience on social media to keep the buzz going.
“There were people that did donate because of him,” said Drexler. “But my goodness, that was a very challenging promise.”
The challenge now is to keep the momentum going to raise the final 33 per cent of the goal.
The $45,000 would allow the foundation to allocate an additional $500 to each of the 92 nutrition programs the foundation runs in Guelph and in Wellington and Dufferin counties, said Drexler. “In some schools, there are children who attend a breakfast program and that is the only meal they have for the day.”
It costs just $1.30 to provide breakfast for an elementary student, and less than a dollar for a snack, she said.
“People don’t have to donate $100 to make a difference,” she said.

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