August 27, 2014 - Today, the Food Action Network’s Community Garden Tour showcased seven local community gardens with two new ones included this year: the 55 Plus Centre and the Eat Local Pizza garden. Each stop showed gardeners working hard to promote a sense of community and sustainability in their neighbourhoods.
At the Community Gardens participants are growing their own food and in the process are reconnecting with nature and the people around them.
Community Gardens, started in Thunder Bay fourteen years ago, have been growing in popularity, doubling in number to sixteen over the last 2 years. There are currently seven community gardens on city–owned property and at least nine more on private land being run by organizations such as daycares, churches or institutions that have sprung up more recently across the city. Schools are also getting in on the action and starting gardens on their land to complement classroom teaching. It’s a trend that’s catching on, with more and more people realizing the benefits of growing their own food.
“I hear from so many new people and groups wanting to start a garden in their neighbourhoods or as part of their organization’s programs – it’s very exciting!” explains Catherine Schwartz-Mendez, Public Health Nutritionist and chair of the Food Action Network and Community Garden Collective. “People young and old from all over the city are coming together to grow their own food, learning new and interesting techniques and skills, and harvesting the benefits. What better way to learn about healthy eating and where food comes from – that it doesn’t just miraculously appear on the grocery store shelf.”
One way of ensuring community food security and the availability and affordability of nutritious food for our residents is to encourage people to renew their ability to feed themselves. The Food Action Network works with local agencies and residents to organize community food projects and promote local food producers.
More information on community gardens and other community food programs can be found at http://www.nwofood.ca/