When 11-year-old Natalie Mowat from Prince Edward Island was deciding what to present at her school’s heritage fair, she turned to her parents for ideas.
“We gave her a few different suggestions,” says her father Don Mowat. “But she was the one who ultimately chose what to do.”
Her choice? A presentation on how Canadian Foodgrains Bank is working to end global hunger.
It was only natural for her to choose the Foodgrains Bank says Don, who took over his father-in-law’s growing project and has been supporting the Foodgrains Bank for over 15 years.
“We’d go to Foodgrains Bank events and concerts together,” he says. “She was around the growing project a lot.”
Natalie researched the Foodgrains Bank by looking online and reading old newspaper articles, and then decided what she wanted to present on.
“I talked about when it [the Foodgrains Bank] started, how it started and what the organization does,” she says, noting that a big poster with photos of combines and local PEI projects was her favourite part.
“It was fun,” adds her father. “She did a good job.”
And he’s not the only one who thinks so – Natalie won first place with her Foodgrains Bank-themed project and went on to present at the provincial heritage fair as well.
For some, presenting in front of a panel of judges can be intimidating at any age, but Natalie says she felt comfortable the whole time.
“People were interested,” she says. “I didn’t have too much difficulty.”
She also says it “felt good” to win, not only because she was proud of her efforts, but also because she wanted to spread awareness about global hunger, a sentiment echoed by her father.
“We’re so privileged here,” says Don, who went on a study tour to Ethiopia with the Foodgrains Bank three years ago.
“What we do here to support the Foodgrains Bank does so much more for people overseas,” he says, of seeing Foodgrains Bank-supported projects implemented locally in Ethiopia.
For Kent Myers, Foodgrains Bank regional coordinator in PEI, Natalie’s project demonstrates how Canadians of all ages support those who are hungry overseas.
“Not everyone is able to plant, tend and harvest a crop,” he says. “But when we each do what we can to help end global hunger, that’s when we can make a difference.”
“And that’s what Natalie has done,” he adds. “We are grateful for her support.”
–Shaylyn McMahon, Communications Assistant