As 2019 comes to a close, the Vancouver Neighbourhood Food Networks continues to celebrate 25 years of delivering food programs for our neighbours.
In 1993, Strathcona Community Centre started their first breakfast program and from there, we have grown to a coalition of 15 Neighbourhood Food Networks across Vancouver to meet the needs of those who face barriers to food security. We have provided food literacy, food skills workshops, community lunches and dinners, community kitchens, gardening programs and have shared many meals and celebrations with our neighbours.
Thank you so much for joining us on our adventures these past years, and here’s to many more together!
Average monthly cost to feed a family of four in Vancouver is $1,098
With the rising cost of food, housing and overall living, the issue of addressing hunger requires a multi-dimensional approach. It does not exist on its own.
The latest Food Costing in BC report highlights the increasing cost of food. Produced by the BC Centre for Disease Control and Provincial Health Services Authority, this report breaks down the cost of a nutritionally adequate diet.
The data in this report represents the “average monthly cost of a nutritionally adequate, balanced diet in BC based on the National Nutritious Food Basket and provides insight into the effects of household food insecurity on individuals and families.”
“….the root cause of household food insecurity isn’t the price of food – it’s lack of income.”
The cause of local food insecurity is deeply intertwined with the roots of poverty. As individuals and families in Vancouver are increasingly unable to afford the rising cost of living, they are forced to make hard decisions about their food choices. While empowering people with skills and knowledge is important, we must also address the many root causes that contribute to food insecurity.
Community pressure has pushed the government to commit to a poverty reduction strategy. Now we need community action to ensure that it’s a strong plan with legislated targets and timelines. You can be a part of this effort to make BC’s government take action against poverty.
The BC government is currently asking British Columbian residents about what should be included in a Poverty Reduction Strategy. It’s now more important than ever that the provincial government hear our collective voice loud and clear highlighting the pillars of a strong, comprehensive poverty reduction plan.
Use the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition’s easy email form to send a message to the government consultations.
They have put together a guide sharing the key messages and policies to highlight in the consultations.
Nominees for the Roger Inman award: VNFN members with Raise the Rates and Sanctuary Health
Last night, the Vancouver Neighbourhood Food Networks attended the CCEC Credit Union AGM as a shortlisted nominee for the Roger Inman Memorial Award, which is given annually in recognition of a project that has made a significant contribution to the economic development of the community. (more…)
Vancouver Neighbourhood Food Networks wrote a letter to Honourable Shane Simpson, Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction to address the work being done to lift those living in poverty through important systems-level change.
This includes increasing income assistance rates and disability benefits, affordable housing (specifically supportive and social housing) affordable childcare, living wages, affordable education, and reducing marginalization.
The Challenge is for one week, eating only what can be purchased with $19, the amount of money a welfare recipient receives.
Even with the $100/month raise implemented by the new BC government, this amount is not enough. A single person on welfare receives only $710/month, which provides only $19/week for food.
With the rising cost of rent, lack of rent control, exorbitant cost of living in the city, this is only $1 more per week than the Challenge in 2016. Raise the Rates is working to raise public awareness of the extreme poverty of people on welfare; and how there needs to be more action and commitment to see rates raised so people on welfare can live with dignity.
The Challenge will start on Wednesday, November 1st and run for a full 7 days. Participants will be expected to live on only the food they can purchase with $19 dollars. This calculation is based on the expectation that welfare recipients will have to pay rent and damage deposit, bus tickets and cell phone (necessary to look for work and contact the welfare office) and personal hygiene. Out of $710 there is still very little money left for food.