Digging in for the Revelstoke food bank

Community Connections Society has received funding to start a garden which will feed our community’s vulnerable citizens.

This opportunity comes after the society began a major campaign towards providing healthy food at their food bank.

Jenna Fraser, Community Food Outreach Coordinator with Community Connections says “there is a direct correlation with food insecurity and the increase of chronic illnesses such as diabetes and heart disease. Healthy food leads to healthy bodies and we want to ensure our food bank members have access to safe, nutritious fresh food to nourish themselves and their families”.

The new food bank garden, led by Garden Manager Bryce Borlick will aim to produce enough vegetables so that the society’s food bank can provide fresh food each week.

Borlick is no stranger to growing food for the food bank, as he managed the Local Food Initiative’s downtown garden last year and donated over 300 lbs of fresh food.

Borlick is motivated to take on this project to help people with financial disadvantages to access healthy food, while also seeing local land utilized to sustainably grow food.

The garden is located at local wood manufacturer Take to Heart’s mill site on Westside Road owned by the Starling family.

The project will utilize creative garden spaces that the Starlings had previously constructed, in addition to a large, new garden plot.

The Starling family has previously contributed a large quantity of fresh vegetables from their personal garden to the food bank.

What you can do to help?

Community Connections is looking for volunteers of all ages to lend a hand in the garden over the summer months.

If you are interested in helping, please call Jenna Fraser at 250-837-2920.

You can also help right in your own backyard by growing extra veggies to donate to the food bank, or if you find that you have planted too much of something, the society will gladly accept the harvests.

Local businesses are also encouraged to help out in the garden either through team-building volunteer work at the garden or by sponsoring a row or a specific vegetable at the garden.

In addition to fresh food donations, the society would like to encourage their community members who wish to donate food to their food bank to consider healthy food options including: canned vegetables and fruit with low sodium and no sugar added, brown rice, whole grains, canned fish, nut butters, and generally items with less than five ingredients.

Community Connections can receive both perishable and non-perishable donations Monday to Thursday 8:30-4:30 pm and Fridays 8:30-12:30 pm at our main office (314- Second Street E).

The project is funded by +FRESH grant (Food Banks Canada with the Compass Group Canada and Bayer Inc.) and West Coast Seeds.

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Keith Starling and Bryce Borlick standing upon a pile of soil, which will be used help to create garden spaces at Take to Heart’s mill. (Submitted)

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