UPDATE: The Northern Environmental Action Team took to social media to thank Northern Metalic for donating a replacement water tank.

“Thank you so much to our amazing community for the outpouring of offers to replace the Finch Elementary School water tank! It just shows again what a generous, caring place we live in and get to call home,” the organization said in their post.

FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Executive director of the Northern Environmental Action Team, Karen Mason-Bennett says she was disappointed to learn a water tank being used for their Food Secure Kids program was stolen from CM Finch Elementary.

Earlier this week, a water tank was also stolen from Ma Murray school.

“We work really hard to provide an educational space for students. And we’ve seen the benefits year over year of having students in gardens,” Mason-Bennett said.

“It’s not just a water tank. It’s really a catalyst for learning in a really dynamic space, and that’s the part that’s really disappointing,” She continued.

Mason-Bennett says this theft cuts into the already tight budget the program operates on because once the non-profit has resources, such as water tanks, that are already purchased they don’t budget for them again.

“If we have something that breaks or something that gets stolen, we have to replace it. And that is always money that we don’t anticipate,” Mason-Bennett stated.

“That’s just the general reality of life in a non-profit or an educational institution. There’s always a give and take for resources,” She continued.

She adds that the FSK program provides many benefits to students and enriches their education by teaching them about plant and water cycles, food miles, and the resources that go into the food they eat.

“What we see is that there’s an increase, willingness to try. When you know what it takes to grow something you’re less likely to throw it out without trying it. So our food secure kids program is a comprehensive food security program,” Bennett said.

Anyone that may have seen anything regarding the theft is encouraged to reach out to NEAT.

Those interested in learning more or supporting NEAT’s FSK program can reach out by calling 250-785-6328.

Spencer Hall is a news reporter for energeticcity.ca and a recent graduate of the British Columbia Institute of Technology’s Radio Arts & Entertainment program. Growing up in Northwest B.C. made Spencer aware of the importance of local journalism, independent media, and reconciliation. In his spare time, you can find Spencer reading, playing video games, or at the FSJ dog park with his dog, Teddy.