help kids by supporting Moorelands after school programs

How You Can Help Kids By Supporting Moorelands After-school Programs

After-school Program = Setting Kids Up For Success

Read on to learn what can be achieved this fall at Moorelands After-school programs with your help!

after-school programs - blast boy reading

Improved Academic Results

Kids from low-income neighbourhoods are falling behind their middle-class peers – reports confirm economic disparities result in academic disparities. At BLAST after-school program, super fun activities teach kids, grades 1-6, vital skills needed to succeed in school… PLUS we offer homework help every day. Amira, a BLAST parent told us: “The wide-ranging activities kids do help them learn and understand different things. That includes science, arts and crafts and reading.”

after-school program - youth LED kids

Benefits to Mental Health

Kids affected by poverty are 3X more likely to experience isolation and depression. 78% of Youth LED after-school program kids, grades 7 and 8, told us that Youth LED helped them feel safer, more confident and make new friends.  Maia, told us: “Moorelands has taught me about being safe and being confident and trying my best.”



Reduced Behaviour Issues

Kids growing up in poverty are more likely to engage in/are at-risk of delinquent behaviours. You can affect these behaviours by supporting any Moorelands after-school program. All Moorelands kids and youth develop leadership skills Daveed, age 15 and enrolled in VITAL, told us: “Something I learned that will help me outside of Moorelands is being respectful. Even if someone is mean to someone else, I now have ways to diffuse the situation and get them to stop.”

after-school program and heatlthy kids

Healthier, More Active Kids

There’s a direct correlation between neighbourhood income and kids being at risk of obesity and Type 2 Diabetes. 94% of parents reported that they felt the BLAST program encouraged their child to be more active. Rupal, a BLAST parent told us: “Now my kids are more self-confident and more active… It’s safe, affordable and fun!”


after-school program - smiling girl at BLAST

A Safe Space to Learn & Grow

Toronto is ‘Canada’s child poverty capital.’ Many working parents cannot afford childcare after school. All spots at Moorelands After-school programs are subsidized and geared to income. Leisha, a BLAST parent, told us: “The program helps me to make my crazy schedule easier. Being a full-time working mom I do appreciate all your help. Knowing Moorelands is there for my kids to ensure their safety and encourage them to be better kids – it means we will all have a stronger future, together.”

You can help kids achieve these positive outcomes by supporting our after-school programs today.

Donate online here: Donate

Income Volatility

Income Volatility Report

Some key findings from Financial Post article:

  • “About 3.3 million Canadians say they are dealing with income volatility to the extent their monthly income can fluctuate by 25 per cent or more, according to a study commissioned by the Toronto-Dominion Bank.”
  • “The online survey, which was conducted by Ipsos Canada from April 13-23, 2017, using a representative, national sample of 3,000 Canadians, 18 years or older, defined income volatility “as income that is inconsistent (not received on a regular and predictable basis), unstable (amount varies each time it is received), and that fluctuates month to month by a significant percentage.” It is considered accurate 19 times out of 20, plus or minus two percentage points.”
  • “The survey found 37 per cent of adult Canadians — about 10 million — maintain they experienced moderate to high levels of income volatility over the past year.”
  • “The study shows income volatility is more likely to be experienced by part-time, self-employed, seasonal workers and the unemployed. The top three causes of fluctuation in month-to-month income were irregular hourly pay (28 per cent), multiple sources of variable income (19 per cent) and self-employment (18 per cent).”
Mayree Poverty Report

Maytree Report: What does the data tell us about rising poverty in Canada?

Some key findings from the Maytree Report

  • “Over [a] nine-year period, incomes increased across the distribution. But the gap between the highest earners and lowest earners also increased, with incomes at the top rising by 11.6 per cent, compared to a rise of 7.5 per cent at the bottom.”
  • “[In 2015] Poverty rose for most family types, with the exception for children in lone-parent families. Their poverty rate fell to 36.4 per cent from 41.9 per cent, but it remained much higher than the rate for children living with two parents at 10.3 per cent. Unattached working-age adults without children also had a high poverty rate at 35.9 per cent.”
  • “In 2015, 12.1 per cent of Canadians (4.2 million people) were in poverty according to the MBM (Market Based Measure), up from 11.3 per cent (3.9 million people) in 2014.”
Divided City

Divided City: Life in Canada’s Child Poverty Capital 2016

Divided City

Divided City - Life in Canada's Child Poverty Capital

Some key findings from the Divided City report:

  • Toronto continues to be the child poverty capital of Canada: it has the highest rate of low-income children among large urban centres (26.8%)… 133,000 children continue to live in poverty.” In the communities Moorelands serves, the figure is between 40% and 63%.
  • “Recreation and early learning participation levels of Toronto children are highly dependent on family income: half of children in families with annual incomes under $30,000 do not regularly participate in out-of-school arts or sports programs (in contrast, only 7% of children in families with incomes over $100,000 don’t participate in these programs).” 
Baby Bundles make a difference

An Inside Look at How Baby Bundles Make a Difference

“When we give the Baby Bundles, it’s being given to [mothers] that really don’t have the means to have nice things for their baby.” Lois Nuk, Supervisor at Macaulay Child Development Centre

Baby Bundles make a difference

150 to 200. That’s how many new moms, on average, receive Moorelands Baby Bundles per year.

Baby Bundles contain basic new items needed in the care of newborns and help mothers in need give their baby a healthy start. This volunteer-based program has had a truly incredible impact on many new moms – but just how much of an impact?

Baby Bundles Make a Difference

We spoke to some of our agency partners who shared with us the amazing difference a Moorelands Baby Bundle makes. It’s not only the gift, it’s the thought that others care about their child and their needs that make such an impact.

You may be wondering, how exactly do our agency partners use the Baby Bundle program?

Baby Bundles make a difference
Baby Bundles make a difference

Connecting with Moms in Need

As Faith Hatchett, Health Promotion Nurse at Jessie Centre, explains:

“For any prenatal participant, we ask them if they’re in need of extra baby supplies”. Once they have a list of mothers in need, they “connect with Moorelands and send in a request depending on how many numbers, and hand [the Baby Bundles] out to the participants”.

The great part about this is that it gives Jessie Centre a great reason to connect with new moms needing community support and provides a bonding experience for sharing knowledge with the new mother.

Brand New Items Packed with Love

We then asked our agency partners what makes Baby Bundles so rewarding for the mother in need. They shared with us their warm thoughts:

Faith explains that, “oftentimes [people] donate gently used or really poorly used clothes. With Moorelands, it’s all brand new, so they get a sense that it’s the first time being used”. She adds that, “Oftentimes when people donate there’s always something that they’re looking to gain. [With Moorelands] there are no strings attached. That’s the biggest thing”.

Baby Bundles Make a Difference
Baby Bundles make a difference
Baby Bundles make a difference

Helping those in Shelters as well as Newcomers

Jill Cunningham, Site Manager at Red Door Family Shelter, shared with us her opinion as well on why Baby Bundles make a difference. She explains that pregnancy is, “a special time” but that, “it’s also a time when moms have a lot of anxiety about whether they’re going to be able to provide. [With Baby Bundles], it feels like somebody else is caring as well as alleviates some anxiety about having those nice things”.

Lois Nuk, Supervisor at Macaulay Child Development Centre, shared with us how Baby Bundles help newcomers to Canada. She says that many mothers, “don’t have a network of family resources [in Canada]. They don’t have aunts and uncles and grandparents and cousins who are going to have a baby shower or give [the new moms] lovely new things, so when we give the Baby Bundles, it’s being given to [mothers] that really don’t have the means to have nice things for their baby”.

Making a Big Impact

Nicole Howard, Activities Organizer at Robertson House, shared a touching story about a new immigrant mother who came to Canada when she was 9 months pregnant and had her baby the day after she arrived. Nicole explained that the poor mother brought absolutely no baby supplies on the plane, so when she received her very own Moorelands Baby Bundle, it meant the world to her. It’s heart-warming stories like this that show how much of an impact our volunteers have!

It really was wonderful to have the chance to talk to our agency partners and get an inside look at how Moorelands Baby Bundle program makes a positive difference in the life of a mother and her child.

Baby Bundles Make a Difference

Faith sums it up beautifully well when she illustrates that magical moment of giving a mother her Baby Bundle:

It’s just that gratitude that they have when they actually get something. It’s just their genuine smile of appreciation”.

By Natalie Burns-Holland

DONATE to Baby Bundles

Moorelands Logo - help us help kids

Fresh Air Fund, Geoff Morrison as Batman

Being a superhero on a shoestring budget: Fresh Air Fund

Jodi at camp

Moorelands’ hub – February 29, 2016 – introducing Jodi Thompson

Hey Moorelands!

Jodi as a Section Head at Moorelands Wilderness Camp
Jodi as a Section Head at Moorelands Wilderness Camp

A few weeks ago we introduced you to new Moorelands’ staff member, David Borsook.

This week we’d like to (re-)introduce you to Jodi ‘Lynx’ Thompson…

For the past 4 years, Jodi Thompson has spent her summers up at Moorelands Wilderness Camp on Kawagama Lake as a Section Head (Check her out as an ‘ooga booga’ below!) Now we’re bringing Camp to the City as Jodi takes on the role of Interim City Programs Manager.

This new appointment is somewhat of a “Homecoming” for Jodi. Although she loves camp, especially leading the cheers in the dining hall (check out the video, below), it’s City Programs that have her heart. Her whole career has been about working with city kids to “give them opportunities that they otherwise would never have had.”

Jodi loves City Programs because “everyday, after-school, is a great time to reach kids.” Children and Youth, she explains – especially those from low-income neighbourhoods – get “labelled a lot and often these labels are really negative.” But what makes Moorelands’ programs so special is that they “rewrite the framework of these stories.”

Jodi at camp as an 'ooga booga'
Jodi at camp as an 'ooga booga'

“What I love about Moorelands is that everyone is walking the walk. The kids absolutely know the core values and these give them positive labels to be proud of. They realise, yes, you CAN be responsible, you CAN be a leader.”

Jodi with her fellow Section Head, Jersey.
Jodi with her fellow Section Head, Jersey.

Jodi is incredibly excited to join the Moorelands’ office team and hopes to use her role as Interim City Programs Manager to uphold Moorelands’ high standards at both our Budding Leaders After-school Teams (BLAST) program and Youth Lead, Excel Demonstrate (LED)

If you’d like to support Jodi and Moorelands’ program objectives of providing a leadership experience to kids affected by poverty, you can make a donation to City Programs by clicking here.

Have a great week!

Best High res just Moorelands

Share it forward

Share it forwardWhy not Share it Forward this Christmas?

Ask Dianna what she wants for Christmas and she’ll tell you there’s not much she personally needs, but there’s a lot she would wish for a child at Christmas. That’s why we created the Share it Forward Christmas card. Each holiday, Dianna gives a list of great Moorelands programs to her three young nephews, and invites them each to choose the one they would like to support as her Christmas gift that year.

“I found that my oldest nephew, David, was particularly interested in the Whacky Science workshops that BLAST offers, so he wanted to support those. Mark was more interested in the baseball, soccer and active games workshops, and Jason loves the drama and arts programming of BLAST.” For Dianna, it’s all about knowing a child in-need will have safe, fun and enriching experiences to keep them engaged and learning during those vulnerable hours after school and before parents can get home from work. “When I learned that most (74%) Moorelands’ BLAST families struggle to get by on less than $30,000 a year, I knew I wanted to make Moorelands’ Share it Forward Christmas card  a part of our Christmas traditions.”

You can donate one of your gifts to a Moorelands’ child too. Why not reach out to a friend or family member and ask them to make one of your Christmas gifts an opportunity for a child to experience Moorelands’ BLAST after-school program, for themselves?  Simply give them the link: and ask them to make a donation in your name.

Whatever amount they donate will be put towards supporting a child from the high priority communities of Thorncliffe Park or Flemingdon Park in engaging, vital, exciting and character-building, programming at Moorelands Budding Leaders After-School Team (BLAST).  It’s a gift that will keep on giving joy and hope throughout the year.