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AgScape Celebrates One Million Educational Experiences at 2024 Annual General Meeting

Milton, Ontario –  AgScape, a leader in agriculture and food education for students and educators across Ontario, proudly hosted its Annual General Meeting (AGM) on May 1, 2024 and celebrated the incredible milestone achievement of providing over one million educational experiences to Ontario students. The event, held at The Arboretum, University of Guelph, brought together over 80 of AgScape’s stakeholders to celebrate the past year’s achievements and discuss future initiatives.

This year’s theme was “Growing Futures: Youth Exploring Agriculture & Food” and Mira Lyonblum, Executive Director of AgScape, highlighted the organization’s significant strides in advancing agriculture and food education in Ontario, especially the achievement of a significant milestone.

“Last year, AgScape reached over one million educational experiences for the first time, marking a major milestone in our mission to ensure every student in Ontario can engage in innovative agriculture and food education experiences,” Lyonblum remarked.

Danette Dalton, Executive Director of the Workforce Planning Board, shared the value of partnering with AgScape and how it aligns with her organization’s focus on agriculture and food career exploration for youth. Kylie Cumming, a Secondary School Teacher and the recipient of AgScape’s 2023 Teaching Excellence in Agriculture and Food Education Award, shared the value she finds in leveraging AgScape’s educational programs and resources in her classroom. Additionally, the AGM featured two interactive demonstrations of AgScape’s Teacher Ambassador Program and thinkAG Career Competition, giving attendees a hands-on experience of the innovative ways AgScape engages youth in Ontario.

Then, Ontario Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Lisa Thompson, delivered closing remarks and announced investments from the governments of Canada and Ontario to further joint efforts in empowering youth and educators to understand their relationship with Ontario’s agriculture and food system and ignite interest in related careers.

“Ontario’s agriculture and food industry has long faced a labour shortage so the work that AgScape does to introduce young people to the opportunities available in our sector is critical to our future,” said Ontario’s new Minister of Agriculture, Food and Agribusiness Rob Flack. “I am pleased to support this work which will help us achieve our Grow Ontario strategy goal of growing Ontario’s agri-food talent.”

During the election portion of the meeting for AgScape’s 2024/2025 Board of Directors, the following individuals were elected:

  • Victoria Berry of Grain Farmers of Ontario as Board Chair
  • Sarah Andrewes of Hill+Knowlton Strategies as Vice Chair
  • Jim McMillan of McMillan Farms as Treasurer
  • Jennifer Kyle of Beef Farmers of Ontario and Michael Black of Synthesis Agri-Food Network to corporate seats
  • Phil Emmott of Corteva Agriscience and Mason Ballek of FarmTogether to community seats

“I am incredibly grateful to the Board of Directors for their confidence in me as Chair and I look forward to another year of working with the Board and amazing team to deliver vital information about farming and food to students across the province. Teaching youth and young adults, as well as educators, about Ontario’s best-in-class agriculture industry and its role in a sustainable future has never been more important. Less than two per cent of the population farms, but 100 per cent need to eat and I look forward to helping the AgScape team build on their truly momentous achievements from the past year,” said Victoria Berry, Chair of AgScape.

Source : Agscape

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