Agriculture in the Classroom-Manitoba (AITC-M) has recently announced a generous three-year funding commitment from Manitoba Chicken Producers (MCP), totaling $60,000. This partnership underscores a shared commitment to providing students with accurate, balanced, current, and science-based information about agriculture. Achieving this goal will ensure the next generation of voters, consumers, leaders and innovators are well-informed about our agriculture industry’s opportunities and challenges.

“We’re so grateful for Manitoba Chicken Producers’ continued support and commitment to agricultural education,” says Katharine Cherewyk, Executive Director of AITC-M. “This generous funding will significantly boost our ability to deliver impactful programs and resources that connect Manitoba’s youth with how their food is produced, including chicken. MCP’s investment is remarkable because they also believe in investing not only money, but time, energy, and passion to the causes they believe in. Their team has dedicated more volunteer hours than any other industry partner to activities we offer, including hands-on programs and professional development sessions for educators.”

Multi-year commitments like MCP’s are crucial for AITC-M’s planning and sustainability. They enable AITC-M to plan, develop resources, and secure government support.

In 2024 and beyond, MCP’s annual contribution of $20,000 will help AITC-M expand its programs and resources, develop more educator workshops, enrich hands-on student experiences, and promote agricultural education and awareness in Manitoba.

“We appreciate the passion and commitment AITC-M has to the education of Manitoba students,” said Wayne Hiltz, Executive Director of Manitoba Chicken Producers. “The initiatives AITC-M undertakes are closely aligned with our own strategic plan key result areas. With so much readily available false or misleading information only a click away, it is so important for the agricultural sector to give students accurate, balanced and science-based information about our industry so they can make educated decisions on their careers and the food they eat. There is so much positive synergy in working with AITC-M, we are pleased to provide AITC-M with the three-year funding commitment so that they can continue to plan for the future.”

MCP’s long-standing support of AITC-M has already yielded positive impacts. Last year, financial and volunteer support from MCP was instrumental in the success of our Amazing Agriculture Adventure: Animals in Glenlea, Manitoba. This program offered 650 grade 4 and 5 students the opportunity to gain a understanding of Manitoba’s livestock industry. Also in 2023, MCP member Rachel Plett led 4,960 Manitoba students on a virtual journey of her chicken farm during the Great Canadian Farm Tour.

MCP also supported Eat Well: Exploring Canada’s Food Guide, a resource that has reached 1,120 students in Grades 4 to 6. MCP staff even led professional development sessions that trained 18 teachers to use the resource in their classrooms.

AITC-M looks forward to continuing its partnership with Manitoba Chicken Producers, fostering agricultural literacy, and ensuring that Manitoba’s students have access to accurate and engaging information about the chicken industry and beyond.