As our communities geared up for a new school year, Nutrien and the Saskatoon Tribal Council prepared for another big event – the 5th year of the school supply giveaway hosted at the White Buffalo Youth Lodge. In previous years, the event is accompanied by a family fun day full of carnival style activities and tasty food. While this year looked a little different in order to mitigate health risks, the impact of the community’s generosity was even greater than before.
The school supply giveaway has been an important part of many children’s return to school each fall in the Saskatoon area. Nutrien funds and coordinates the sourcing of the supplies that are distributed in backpacks to these students in need alongside our partner, the Saskatoon Tribal Council. Our Nutrien team members value the strong sense of impact from seeing the faces of the kids light up with their new treasures in preparation for the new school year, and this year was no different.
Julie Ann Wriston, Senior Advisor for Strategic Inclusion, based at the Nutrien Saskatchewan offices, stated that although they were unable to host the carnival, the event still received strong support from the supplier network. In total, 1500 backpacks were stuffed full of much-needed supplies by volunteers working in shifts and distributed to families who needed it the most. Each backpack held $150 dollars worth of supplies for these students, which included everything they would need for school as well as dental hygiene kits, face masks, hand sanitizer, and even earbuds!
In addition to the efforts of Nutrien and the Saskatoon Tribal Council, the supply partners that made it possible were Kelly Panteluk Construction, Ltd., Stockdale’s, Park Derochi, Nutana Machine, Graham Construction, Westburne, the City of Saskatoon, and United Way Saskatoon. 50% of the cost of the backpacks themselves was also donated by Nutrien’s partner, MarketPro.
Reflecting on the giveaway, Julie Ann Wriston stated, “Nutrien takes pride in standing with our community partners to ensure that our future leaders, our youth, have every opportunity to thrive in their education.”
She continued, “Saskatoon Tribal Council is built on resiliency, and that was apparent in the face of COVID-19 and the effort they put in with us to create an environment of support and success.
Although this year’s backpack giveaway was different, the care and attention shown by the planners and our supplier network is a strong signal that the relationships we have built can rise to any challenge we face.”
We wholeheartedly agree with her thoughts on our strong partnerships in the community and the continued impact our Nutrien Family can have in the world. We are proud of the work our community does and the generosity demonstrated by everyone who worked to give these important supplies to students in the Saskatoon area.
To sum it up, Julie Ann Wriston said it perfectly: “We are truly in this together, and together we definitely grow!”