On a dark, cold night in November, the Cedar Cottage Neighbourhood House filled with the aroma of hot drinks, fresh fruit and other snacks, and the sound of excited voices. More than 40 people attended a community meeting to discuss our concerns and ideas about local food security.
Interests within the group included swapping surplus garden produce, cooking together in community kitchens, starting food projects for children, and building on the local food culture through public art and an upcoming magazine called Edible Vancouver… Many people were interested in the connection between medicinal plants and health care, and almost everyone in the room expressed interest in supporting new community gardens.
Facilitated by the Trout Lake Cedar Cottage (TLCC) Food Security Network and the Vancouver Food Policy Council , the community meeting was successful in identifying the many strengths of existing food programs, the gaps that need to be filled, and opportunities for community members to take action and get involved.
The TLCC Food Security Network continues to meet each month to move forward on the ideas initiated at the community meeting. An area of land near the Nanaimo SkyTrain station has been identified as a potential site for an intergenerational, cross-cultural garden with native plants, fruit trees, public art, and beyond.
Partners in the network, include Vancouver Native Health, the Environmental Youth Alliance, and the Vancouver Community Agriculture Network, Your Local Farmers Market, community members, Vancouver Fruit Tree Project, Cedar Cottage Neighbourhood House, Trout Lake Community Centre. EYA & TLCC Food Security Network are partnering in a workshop series for the 2008 growing season:
February 16 – soil, compost and planting apple trees
March 29 - garden planning & seed starts
April - bed building & planting
June & July - winter gardening
September - seed saving & putting garden to bed
There will be a Community Meeting scheduled for the end of February for community members to discuss engage & actively participate in the creation of the garden, and to grow & evolve the garden. Join in as we grow together, eat together & work together.
To register for any of the workshops, or to get involved, contact Paula Luther, Coordinator – firstname.lastname@example.org To stay informed check out our blog – tlccfoodsecurity.blogspot.com
TLCC Food Security Network member