The Breakfast Club

Fuel for school

Katoomba North Public School’s Breakfast Program provides kids with the good start they need to power through a full school day. The Co-op has been a supporter of the program for a number of years. We caught up with Caroline Gilligan Payne, Breakfast Club Coordinator, to find out what’s cooking at KNPS.

Katoomba North Public School Breakfast Club

Katoomba North Public School’s Breakfast Club has become an integral part of the school’s regular social activities, providing a free and nutritious breakfast to students in a centralised location that is both safe and relaxing. In 2011 Bendigo Bank Katoomba provided sponsorship that allowed the Breakfast Club to offer breakfast to students at KNPS five mornings a week during each of the four school terms. Ten years on, Breakfast Club continues to serve breakfast every day, except during Covid restrictions. This is a much-needed service at the school and one of the first in the Upper Blue Mountains to provide breakfast every day during school terms.

Blue Mountains Food Co-op also came on board in 2011 and have generously continued to provide local honey, fruit and oats annually, as needed. In the cooler months toast is served with a choice of spreads as well as a cup of warm Milo, warm oatmeal with honey and fresh fruit. On warmer days fresh fruit salad and fruit juice is served along with healthy cereals and toast. Breakfast Club is set up each morning in next to the school COLA adjacent to the Community Hub. Breakfast is served between 8.40am and 9am, before the start of the school day at 9.10am. Students from Kindergarten to Year 6 enjoy the benefits of KNPS Breakfast Club.

Volunteers from the school community run the breakfast program with sponsorship from Bendigo Bank Katoomba and the Blue Mountains Food Co-op and donations from Coles Katoomba, Woolworths Katoomba and families within the school’s community.

The aim of Breakfast Club at Katoomba North Public School:

Breakfast Club enhances the health and wellbeing of the children it provides for. The club contributes to the nutritional needs of children who attend school, helps combat late attendance, assists in improving engagement with their community and has a positive impact on the children’s capacity to learn.

There are also the added benefits of increasing social connection, providing informal relationships with school personnel, and each other, improving social skills and allowing children to take responsibility when volunteering to assist with breakfast club.

This is an opportunity for collective responsibility in the interests of the children of this community. A coordinated and collaborative response to addressing the needs of students enables the school to support the wellbeing, positive behaviour and increased learning opportunities of every student. The proactive involvement of community members and financial assistance from local businesses will only improve relationships and ensure children within our community are provided with every opportunity to reach their full potential. In return, it is hoped that in the long-term students will support and promote the community that nurtured them.

Caroline Gilligan Payne

No one misses out

Over at Katoomba Public School Crunch & Sip supplies are getting a boost from the Co-op too.

Recently, Stage 2 students, Audrey, Addison and Violet visited the Co-op to choose a box of fruit and vegetables to take back to school. “The children were very excited and bought quite a lot of juicing carrots because they were nice and small and easy to share, a lot of apples, some small local mandarins and a few bananas,” says teacher Ms Bateman.

The fruit and veg will supplement Crunch & Sip supplies brought from home to ensure no one misses out on an important healthy mid-morning snack.

Cate Paterson, Katoomba Public School Community Liaison Officer, says the school is very grateful for the donation. “This kind of support – helping us to provide healthy food options for the children – is very valuable and needed. For a whole range of reasons, families might need a bit of help providing fresh fruit and vegetables for their kids,” says Cate.

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