Taste of Damascus: A Syrian Fundraiser Community Dinner

Join us for this Syrian fundraiser dinner and help support the fundraising effort of the Grandview Woodland Refugee Initiative to bring together family members living in Syria with their loved ones residing in our community here in Vancouver.  This fundraiser will include a wonderful Syrian dinner prepared by Carmen Aldakhlollah and her mother Hayat Shabo with A Taste of Damascus.  We will also have musical entertainment, silent auction, and great company.

When:    Sunday, June 24, 5 - 9pm
Where: Britannia Community Centre, Canucks Family Education Centre, 1655 William Street (above Eastside Family Place)
Cost: $50
Registration: Britannia Community Centre: 604-718-5800 or online at  https://bit.ly/2wTRbBx

More information: 604-718-5895   

Kimchi Workshop

Had a great Kimchi workshop recently led by Sarah Lim. Kimchi workshops are quite popular with people interested in the health benefits and great taste.

Kimchi is a high fiber, and nutrient-packed side dish full of a range of vitamins such as vitamin A, vitamin B1, vitamin B2, and vitamin C. It is also rich in essential amino acids and minerals such as iron, calcium, and selenium and has powerful antioxidants and provides an additional benefit of probiotics as well in the form of lactobacillus bacteria. It contains numerous helpful components including capsaicin, chlorophyll, carotenoids, flavonoids, and isothiocyanates and has a low amount of fat and sugar.

Harvest Time

I remember a teacher telling me that student success is significantly improved when they experience tangible results from their learning. With this in mind, I work hard to ensure that the seeds that the students plant germinate well and grow into healthy plants that the students can say they grew themselves. Better yet when we actually get to harvest the veggies to make fresh garden salads. I try to convey how profound it is to actually grow and eat your own food, freshly picked and full of nutrients. Some kids get it and really enjoy the salads.

Sustenance Festival Update

As most of you already know Sustenance Festival is an annual arts, culture, and food festival organized by the Vancouver Park Board. During 2017 staff undertook a relationship-building process with the goal to work towards greater social and cultural inclusion.  As a result 1) a report was written which includes valuable feedback from community groups on experiences working within the Park Board (PB) system 2) a fund of $5000 was created in order to provide greater support to groups working on food, arts, and culture initiatives 3) new relationships and partnerships are forming with groups who want to work with PB and 4) the Sustenance Festival format is being reenvisioned by an Interculturalism Advisory Committee.

HOW DO COMMUNITY CENTRES PARTICIPATE THIS YEAR?

With the aim to continue building reciprocal relationships with new and existing partners and individuals, we are inviting community centres to participate in two ways:

  1. Program a food, arts, and culture initiative (event, workshop series, dialogue, etc.) for the fall season that provides an opportunity for some kind of cultural exchange or learning (ex. sharing a family story or the history behind a special dish that is shared). In general, it is preferable to program a series or an ongoing event rather than a one-off. Send the info to rebecca.till@vancouver.ca and we’ll put it up on the Sustenance website.
  2. Apply to the Sustenance Community Fund if you have an idea you feel you need support with (such as funding support or advice on how to plan a culturally focused event or series). For more info and to apply please see attached form. We will select 3-6 centres and those selected may have the opportunity to be showcased at the larger Sustenance Festival event in the fall. Initiatives will be showcased on the Sustenance website.

CONTENT FOR BROCHURES

Regardless of how you are participating this year please include this generic blurb and the attached logo in your brochure. If you already know what your specific program will be you can also include it under the generic blurb. If you don’t know before your brochure deadline, don’t worry, we can include it on the Sustenance Festival website which is linked in the blurb.

The Sustenance Festival is back starting September 2018! After a year-long process of research and relationship-building we will spend 2018 focusing on events and workshops that create opportunities for greater social and cultural inclusion in the food, arts, and culture communities. Check out the website for upcoming food, art and culture events near you!

Farm to School Vancouver Year End Celebration

The Grandview Woodland Food Connection along with Britannia Community Services Centre were pleased to host this year’s Farm to School Vancouver Region Year End Celebration at Britannia School which brought together 120 teachers, students, parents, and community organizations to share in workshops, networking, a great dinner, and awards.

Workshops including Pollinators & Beneficial Insects with Nikoo, from Society Promoting Enviornmental Conservation (SPEC), to discussing the various beneficial insects and pollinators one can expect to see in their school garden, plants that will draw in more to school gardens, and activities to engage students in learning about them. Rescued Pizzas with Rosalind Sadowski from Fresh Roots and David Schein from Foodstash Foundation reclaiming local, organic, seasonal produce destined for the bin, and make everyone’s favourite dish with them. Salve-making with Lori Snyder, a descendant of the T’suu tina (Sarcee), Nakota (Assiboine), Cree, Nipissing & Anishinaabe (Ojibwa) people, is an Indigenous Herbalist who brought forth her First Nations perspective and knowledge of wild, edible and medical plants to demonstrate how to make beeswax healing salves with plants are grow abundantly around us.

In addition, a number of discussions on a variety of Farm to School themes including Connecting with Farmers Markets, Using the Garden as a Classroom, and Safe, Healthy School Food, and Landed Learning and Edible Garden Projects.

Finally, schools were awarded pollinator awards, to celebrate and recognize school teams and programs that do outstanding school food and garden work in our community!

Britannia School Garden Bees Have Arrived

Our new Britannia School Garden bees have arrived and will provide tremendous new learning opportunities as well as ecological benefits to the garden.  With the help of English teacher and professional bee keeper, Ashley McLeod, our new honey bees have become a reality. Most exciting is that Ashley has developed an interesting 3 semester English curriculum titled Focused Literary Studies: Environmental Studies and Beekeeping This focused literary study will generate opportunities in place based and experiential learning while fulfilling the learning learning outcomes for her students in Communications 12. The approaches to learning include the study and production of a variety of environmental texts (novels, poetry, research papers, journalism, folklore and instructional texts) as well as a field study of bees, beekeeping, the culture of the apiary and sustainable systems in our community. Through hands on experience working with bees, students will deepen their understanding of themselves and others in relation to the environment, locally and globally. Furthermore, students will study traditional Indigenous texts that emphasize the importance of connection to the land and the environment from a First People’s perspective and participate in a variety of workshops lead by Aboriginal educators and community members. The goals of the course are geared towards increasing environmental stewardship amongst youth while increasing literacy, communication skills and fostering a deepened understanding of themselves and others locally and globally. The course also provides a plethora of opportunities for cross curricular integration in subjects such as: biology, woodworking, foods, earth sciences and business.