Golden Bear Packs

Contact Information

Kelley Glasgow,
Banford School Counselor

315-386-8561 ext. 1400

The Theta Pi sorority recently donated to the Canton Golden Bear Packs program. Karen Hampson, left, gives a check to Kelly Glasgow.

380 Bear Packs were assembled on November 6, 2013 with the help of volunteers from St. Lawrence University and Kids Care.

Canton Central Teachers support the Bear Packs program by donating food and volunteering to pack.

3Kelley Glasgow & Heather Marrin (School Counselors) in the Golden Bear Packs store room.

Food Drive Bingo

Change a child's life one Bear Pack at a time!

The Golden Bear Packs program fills the gap in children's nutrition by ensuring that students in need will not go hungry over weekends and vacations during the school year.

 Program News & Updates
  • A Special Thank You to Canton's Mr. Ding-A-Ling Ice Cream truck for donating food to the Bear Packs during the summer of 2015.  All of the generous donations will help the Bear Packs Program get off to a great start for the 2015-16 school year.  Thank You Mr. Ding-A-Ling!! 

  • A Special Thank You to Vivian Coburn who collected Bear Packs food at her recent Birthday Party.  We appreciate all of the wonderful donations! Thank you!

  • The Golden Bear Packs program is going strong for the 2014-15 school year.  Please consider making a donation of food items to help Canton students in need.  Child friendly food donations may be dropped off at the Banford Elementary School Office at any time.  Thank you!

  • THANK YOU to all who contributed food, time, money and more to make the 2013-2014 Bear Packs program such a huge success!!  We will send home over 2500 Bear Packs this year.  Thanks to this outpouring of support we have been able to expand the Golden Bear Packs program to cover all grade levels at Canton and we will be able to continue the program in 2014-2015. 

  • Thank you to The Northern New York Community Foundation Board of Directors and the Youth Philanthropy Council for approving a $2,000 grant to benefit the Golden Bear Packs program on March 25, 2014.  Click here to read the story.
    Click here to see the picture.

  • Food Drive BINGO was a great success!  Middle School Students donated over 1200 items and 6 homerooms achieved BINGO!  Thank you to the Middle School Student Council members and their advisors for organizing this fun and successful event for the Bear Packs!

  • A Good News Story. Thank you to NCPR for highlighting the Golden Bear Packs program in a recent news story.   Click here to read the story. 

  • Thank you to The Northern Zone Association for Counselors for donating $1,000 to the Golden Bear Packs program in February 2014.

  • The Golden Bear Packs Program will have a Community Based Learning Student from St. Lawrence University interning with us for the Spring 2014 semester. 

  • Thanks to the generous donations of food and time from Canton Central Teachers, we have enough Bear Packs packed to last us through January 2014. 

  • Thank you to Stewart's Shops for donating $500 to the Golden Bear Packs program in October 2013.

  • The first 50 weekly Bear Packs were sent home on Friday, September 6, 2013 and we have continued to send home over 50 packs per week this year.

  • Thank you to the Grasseroots Fund for awarding a $2,000 grant to the Golden Bear Packs program.
  • On February 15, 2013 the first 25 Bear Packs filled with nutritious food were sent home with Banford students in need.  On March 26-27, 2013 we delivered 42 Bear Packs to students and  prior to Memorial Day Weekend 2013 approximately 50 Bear Pack were delivered.  Thank you to the Canton Neighborhood Center, generous donors and volunteers who provided the food and packed the packs for the launch of the Bear Packs program.

Golden Bears in need

The Golden Bear Packs program fills the gap in children’s nutrition by ensuring that students in need will not go hungry over weekends and vacations during the school year.  More than one-third of Canton Central students are eligible for free or reduced price breakfasts and lunches.  Families rely on these resources to keep their children healthy and well-nourished during the school week.  The Golden Bear Packs program is designed to help meet the food needs of Canton students at times when other resources are not available, especially on weekends and school breaks. 

The Packs

The Golden Bear Packs program provides bags filled with nutritious food that is child-friendly, shelf stable and easily consumed.  Each Bear Pack contains 10 items per week per child enrolled.  Bags are packed by volunteers and discreetly distributed to participating students every Friday during the school year.  Each weekly Bear Pack includes 2 breakfast items, 2 lunch items, 2 snacks, 2 juice boxes, fresh fruit and more.

The Individually packaged bags may include the following items:


Single serve cereal and large boxes of cereal (unsweetened), oatmeal packets, granola bars, cereal bars

Peanut butter, plastic jars of jelly, canned pasta meals, canned tuna or chicken, soup, mac & cheese, canned vegetables


Pudding cups, fruit cups (in juice), trail mix, raisins, apple sauce (unsweetened), nuts, whole wheat crackers, microwave popcorn

Juice Boxes

100% fruit and vegetable juices

Food donations are always welcome!

How you can help

Golden Bear Packs is a volunteer and donor driven program.  Food, monetary and volunteer donations directly support students in need.  Our volunteers organize the program, stock the shelves and fill the packs each week.  With your help we can supply a child in need with nutritious and delicious food every week.

Food Donations

To meet our goal of operating the Golden Bear Packs program for the 41 Fridays school is in session, we rely on nutritious food donations to help stock our pantry. Please consider making a food donation to the Bear Packs program. Child friendly, non-perishable food donations are always welcome and may be dropped off at the Banford Elementary School Office, 99 State Street, Canton NY. 


If you are interested in volunteering your time to help the program, please contact Kelley Glasgow, Banford Counselor at 315-386-8561 ext. 1400 or

Monetary Donations

Monetary donations are also very helpful and allow the program to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables each week.  $100 will sponsor one child for the entire school year.  All contributions are tax deductible.
Please consider sending a donation to:

Golden Bear Packs *
Banford Elementary School Counseling Office
99 State Street
Canton, NY  13617

* Please indicate "Golden Bear Packs" on the check memo line.

Donations of non-food items

Donations of non-food items are always helpful and allow the program to address other concerns and fill the packs with something extra and fun.  Child friendly personal care items (tooth brushes,tooth paste, hair brushes, soap, shampoo, etc.) along with small toys (jump ropes, frisbees, cards, books) are always welcome.  We are also looking for donations of gallon size zipper bags and plastic utensils. All items may be dropped off at the Banford Elementary School Office, 99 State Street, Canton NY.  Every item helps a child in need and makes a difference!


All current Canton Central Students are eligible to join the Golden Bear Packs program.  Interested families must complete an enrollment form, which are always available at the Banford Office and from the Banford Counseling Office by calling 386-8561 ext. 1400 or emailing  All information will be kept confidential in the school counselor’s office.  Once enrolled, a family stays enrolled until the family opts out or moves out of the school district.

Enrolled students will discreetly receive a bag filled with nutritious breakfast, lunch and snack options every Friday afternoon.  Students bring the food packed bag home for the weekend or school break and enjoy the nutritious food.  Students return to school on Monday feeling nourished and ready to learn!


The Golden Bear Packs program is partnered with the Canton Neighborhood Center and the Canton Golden Bear Education Foundation to help ensure that children in need will not go hungry over school weekends and breaks. 
Thank you to our partners!

Feed a child, nourish the mind.