Farmers Helping Farmers luncheons Thanksgiving weekend

Published on October 1, 2014
Chef Emily Wells will prepare her annual luncheons in support of Farms Helping Farmers on October 11 and 12 in New Glasgow.

NEW GLASGOW -- Since starting her Thanksgiving weekend fundraising luncheons in 2008, Chef Emily Wells has helped raise more than $25,000 for P.E.I.-based Farmers Helping Farmers in support of Kenyan schools.

She will be adding to the total with October 11 and 12 luncheons in support of UPEI student teachers who will be travelling to Kenya through Farmers Helping Farmers.

The luncheons will be held between noon and 4 p.m. both days at The Olde Glasgow Mill.

The pre-service teachers spend six weeks working in schools in Kenya.

Lydia MacKay, now teaching at West Kent School, went to Kenya in 2011 with support from one of Wells’ fundraising luncheons. She described the experience as life-changing.

“Teaching in Kenya taught me to appreciate the resources and education system we have here in Canada,” MacKay commented. “We take so much for granted. I continuously draw on my Kenyan experiences in my own classroom. There is a lot of value in teaching students about a very different part of the world.” She is now partnered with Farmers Helping Farmers so that West Kent can be twinned with a school in Kenya.

“I was amazed at the interest and dedication shown by the West Kent students,” she said. “The students exchanged letters and fundraised for what we called our Kenya Kousins.”

Such connections inspire Wells to continue her luncheons.

“We don't know what we’ve got and how lucky we are in this country until we see what it's like in the rest of the world and very particularly in a Third World country,” says Wells who has a trip to Kenya on her bucket list. “Food, education, water, democracy, healthcare – you name it, we’ve got it. And of course teachers are in an excellent position to spread the word when they come back.”

The three-course luncheons will feature donated produce from large farms to small gardens, including homemade pickles and dairy items. Creating a menu from what she is given is a lot of fun, Wells confesses.

Anyone interested in volunteering time in the kitchen or as a server during the fundraiser is asked to contact Patsy Dingwell at pdingwell@pei.sympatico.ca, or (902)961-2977. Reservations for the luncheon are recommended and can be confirmed by calling (902)964-3313.