An Indigenous foods garden in Cambridge, Ont. is broadening its field and yield by joining the Cambridge Self Help Food Bank’s community food garden.
Andrew Judge, co-ordinator of Indigenous studies at Conestoga College, has been building the garden at the Rare Charitable Research Reserve since the summer, in an area close to the food bank’s community orchard. Judge hopes to grow a number of different fruits and vegetables that are traditional to the Hodinoshoni, such as corn beans, squash and sunflowers. “Those will be accented by some of our traditional medicine,” Judge told the CBC. He also hopes to grow wild plums, Saskatoon berries, artichokes, strawberries and raspberries. The food grown at the Indigenous garden will be collected by the Cambridge Self Help Food Bank and go toward their meal programs. Adding more fresh products to the food bank’s meal ingredients will help improve nutrition, Judge believes.
The Cambridge Self-Help Food Bank offers food and support to people and community groups in need within Cambridge and North Dumfries and also encourages self-reliance through programs and services such as community food gardens. They want every person to have access to healthy food and opportunities for growth by encouraging a sense of community and developing life skills. They even offer a values statement of respecting all people equally; which might explain their commitment to Truth and Reconciliation and reaching out to Judge and his project.
Local Indigenous groups White Owl and Healing of the Seven Generations have also teamed up with Judge and the Cambridge Self Help Food Bank for the development of new programs. “We want to create space for Indigenous community members, who may not otherwise have the opportunity, to work on the land, to plant seeds, expand the space to provide not just for themselves but for the next generation,” Judge said.
This is an excellent opportunity for developing growing skills, and providing healthy local food to those in need, it is a great partnership that should inspire others to seek the same. It’s your Good News Story of the Day and you can read more about it here.
Story and Image from CBC.