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!
“Kitchens and dining room tables aren’t just places to make food. They’re also safe and familiar places to gather, connect, organize, plan and to recuperate. Food not only changes the feeling in a space, it also shifts behaviour.”
Julia Turshen, author of “Feed the Resistance: Recipes + Ideas for Getting Involved”
The dining room table offers more than a space to eat a meal. While breaking bread, a shared meal is an opportunity to sit down and converse with others. It offers space to share stories, create new ideas, or even informally practice language. As a shared activity, eating food connects people to community.
Combining the need for healthy, balanced meals with the need for more social spaces in the city, Vancouver Food Networks offer affordable meals for the community. Community meals are meant to offer meals which are accessible, so the cost of an average community meal is between $3 to $7. These are often homestyle meals, usually prepared and cooked on-site during the week. With advance notice, dietary considerations may be taken into account by the kitchen, too.
If $3 to $7 is still a barrier, free and by-donation meals are available. Breakfasts (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday) and lunches (Wednesday) are offered for free at the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood House. By-donation lunches (Monday, Wednesday) are available at Gordon Neighbourhood House in the West End.
These community meals usually consist of multiple courses, including dessert. Weekday meals are offered throughout the city at Britannia Community Centre, Collingwood Neighbourhood House, Mount Pleasant Neighbourhood House, Hastings Community Centre (for seniors), South Van Neighbourhood House, Little Mountain Neighbourhood House, and Kits Neighbourhood House.
Find a Food Network which offers free or low cost meals in your neighbourhood. Learn when you are welcome to drop by to eat a hearty meal and meet your neighbours at the same time.
See up-to-date information on current community meals here.
Fall is here and we’re celebrating the bounty of the harvest. Check out the free family-friendly celebrations happening throughout the Vancouver Neighbourhood Food Networks this autumn.
Photo from Kits House’ Autumn Fair
South Vancouver Harvest Festival
Join the South Vancouver Food Network at their annual South Vancouver Harvest Festival on October 5th, 2018. They will be serving up delicious free food, you can press your own apple cider, have your face painted, and play games!
If you like to bake, enter a homemade dessert in the dessert competition for a chance to win a prize! This year’s theme is apples.
This event will feature a multi-cultural lunch, apple tasting, and apple cider pressing. Bring a potluck dish featuring apples from your country to share! This event is supported by Little Mountain-Riley Park Neighbourhood Food Network and featured as part of Sustenance Festival.
Saturday, October 20, 2018
Riley Park Community Garden, 50 East 30th Avenue, Vancouver
Autumn Fair 2018
Celebrate the season with Kits House and Westside Food Collaborative!
Kits House’s much anticipated 8th Annual Autumn Fair returns on Saturday October 27, 2018. This popular FREE community event brings in people of all ages together to meet their neighbours, have fun and celebrate the season!
The Autumn Fair fills an entire block with street vendors, food trucks, carnival games, a pumpkin patch, local musicians, and a farmers market. You can step inside Kits House to check out live entertainment, a haunted house, a pancake breakfast, and our tea room! The event will also feature a variety of entertainment, including a fun and popular kids character, an interactive theatre, and improv with The Fictionals Comedy Co.
Saturday October 27th, 2018
10:00am – 3:00pm
Kits House, 2305 West 7th Ave, Vancouver
The end of the summer is coming soon! To wrap up the growing season, South Vancouver Food Network is hosting two upcoming workshops, Gardening 101 and Therapeutic Gardening.
These free workshops take place at the South Vancouver Neighbourhood House and are open to all members of the community.
For more information or to register for a workshop, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, call at 604-324-6212, or register at reception.
Curious about how to grow and maintain your own garden throughout the Fall? Victoria from Fresh Roots will tell us all about garden planning, building healthy soil, seed sowing, seasonal care (including fall and winter maintenance), and more! This Gardening 101 workshop will also offer a hands-on activity.
Date: August 20th (Monday)
Time: 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Location: South Vancouver Neighbourhood House (6470 Victoria Dr.)
Gardening can be a therapeutic activity for many people including seniors, people with disabilities, and caregivers. In partnership with George Pearson Centre, Farmers on 57th specializes in growing food and building communities with residents living with disabilities. Sarah from Farmers on 57th will introduce participants to the benefits of therapeutic gardening and how to make it more accessible for those with limited mobility.
Date: August 21st (Tuesday)
Time: 10:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Location: South Vancouver Neighbourhood House (6470 Victoria Dr.)
The South Vancouver Food Hub will replace the South Vancouver Food Bank, formerly held at Faith Fellowship Baptist Church. The South Vancouver Food Bank served an estimate of 160 households each week, including 35% seniors and 8% families with young children.
The new food hub is located at South Vancouver Neighbourhood House, 6470 Victoria Drive (at 49th Avenue) on Tuesdays from 10am-12pm. (This excludes the week when provincial Social Assistance cheques are issued).
This move to the South Vancouver Neighbourhood House enables individuals to connect to programs and services such as settlement support, family programs, language classes, seniors’ services, and other resources.
For more information about individual Neighbourhood Food Networks or their organizations, please visit the Vancouver Neighbourhood Food Networks map. Visit individual Neighbourhood Food Network websites for other current employment and volunteer opportunities.
This posting has been updated as of June 25, 2018.