Educating youth on agriculture: kicking off Canadian Agriculture Literacy Month with $1.6 million in support of Agriculture in the Classroom
March 1, 2021 – Headingley, Manitoba – Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
The Government of Canada is committed to increasing awareness and promoting interest in agriculture across the country. Agriculture in the Classroom Canada (AITC-C) starts these conversations early, teaching Canadian youth the importance of farming and the agri-food sector while promoting interest for future careers in agriculture and food.
Today, the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, announced Agriculture in the Classroom Canada has been approved for up to $1.6 million over two years under the AgriCompetitiveness Program. The announcement marked the launch of one of AITC-C's flagship initiatives, Canadian Agriculture Literacy Month (CALM), which is now in its tenth year.
Funding through the AgriCompetitiveness Program, will help AITC-C offer innovative teaching tools and initiatives to provide accurate and consistent information on Canadian agriculture. Funds will also be used to expand upon current and new agriculture awareness tools, including snapAG fact sheets, the Little Green Thumbs school gardening program, a national rollout of their "Business of Food" teacher training program, CALM, and Journey 2050 virtual farm presentations. Due to AITC-C's ability to increase the scope of their programming, the investment represents a 50% increase in annual funding.
With more capacity to offer dynamic and unique outreach opportunities, AITC-C will bring students up close and personal with Canada's agriculture and agri-food sector.
"It is absolutely essential that young Canadians understand where their food comes from. They must know what farmers' work consists of and how hard they work to take care of their animals and our environment in order to provide us with high-quality food. I encourage our young people to take an interest in the many job opportunities available to them on farms and in mechanics, electronics and engineering, science, animal and plant health and much more! I applaud the Agriculture in the Classroom Canada team for their outstanding work and celebrate Agriculture Literacy Month with them."
- The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
"We are absolutely thrilled to continue our strong collaboration with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada with a further cash contribution through the Canadian Agriculture Partnership. AAFC is a true champion of agriculture education across the nation and together, we are elevating towards our vision of bringing agriculture to every classroom, inspiring every student.AITC-C's inquiry-based, curriculum-linked resources and programs, delivered through our 10 provincial member organizations, will affect real advancement in the sharing of Canada's incredible agriculture and food story. This funding will also help us leverage current and new sector partnerships to provide accurate, balanced and current agri-food learning in Canadian schools."
- Johanne Ross, Executive Director, Agriculture in the Classroom Canada
The AgriCompetitiveness Program aims to help the agricultural sector to leverage, coordinate, and build on existing capacity, enhance safety, adapt to changing commercial and regulatory environments, seize new opportunities, share best practices, and provide mentorship opportunities.
AITC-C, a national not for profit organization, is the voice for agriculture education in Canada. Together with its ten provincial members as well as industry partners, the organization delivers accurate, balanced, and current curriculum-linked agri-food resources, programs, and initiatives that are based on science.
Funding for the project is pending the signing of a Contribution Agreement.
Canadian Agriculture Literacy Month encourages students in all 10 provinces to learn about and celebrate Canada's incredible agriculture and food story. By connecting classrooms with farmers and people with a passion for agriculture and food, students and teachers learn firsthand about this sector through the incredible story shared by the volunteer visiting with them.
Office of the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
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