Hastings-Sunrise Community Food Network – Community Food Circles Food Literacy Workshops






Project Summary


This project is an exciting opportunity to experience the process of grassroots community development around increasing access to healthy food and addressing issues of food security

Areas of Focus

  • Increasing community access to healthy food
  • Community and network development


  • Experience in collaborative community development processes
  • Network development in a non-profit setting


Project will take place in Hastings Sunrise at Agency locations – neighbourhood houses or community centres with public access and bike paths. Some work is done on the phone and email.

Special Considerations

  • Some evening a weekend dates
  • Opportunity to participate in professional facilitation training sessions

Organization Information


Hastings Sunrise Community Food Network


Mission: Hastings Sunrise Community Food Network is sponsored by Hastings Community Association. Visit www.hscfn.com for more information on the role and mission of NFN’s (Neighbourhood Food Networks).

Hastings Sunrise Community Food Network was formed in 2012, to help connect and support the Hastings Sunrise community, towards the access of healthy, affordable food. We have a rich, long history of food programs and activities at our community centres and neighbourhood houses, and HSCFN connects them with other community food and garden initiatives, to help strengthen capacity for a viable and resilient food system for Hastings Sunrise.

HSCFN is a member of the VNFN (Vancouver Neighbourhoood Food Network). NFN’s are part of the Greenest City action plan as a strategy to increase access to local food.

The role of HSCFN is to:

  • Build individual and community capacity
  • Learn about the needs of the community and to identify gaps in programs, services and information
  • Provide insight, share best practices and bring service providers together to build a just, sustainable and resilient food system in Hastings Sunrise.

Primary Contact

  • Joanne MacKinnon, Coordinator Hastings Sunrise Community Food Network
  • Email: info@hscfn.com
  • Ph: 778.998.3471

Project Description

The Network is implementing Year 2 of the Community Food Circles project. The goal of the project is to increase our community capacity in food security based on the findings from the Year 1 Focus Groups. In Year 1 (fall 2016-spring 2017), we trained 8 community members as The Facilitators who conducted 8 focus groups.

Fall 2017 is the implementation of Year 2 Workshops in 5 locations (Agency partners being the community centres and neighbourhood houses) on Mystery Box Cooking and How to use all the veggies in your food box. Agencies will use a combination of produce from the food bank and the food rescue mission (donated from a wholesaler). The hands-on workshop for 12 community members will include cooking demonstrations, food literacy + nutrition + recipes. The Mystery Box workshop facilitator will offer the same workshop at each Agency starting in October.

Students will assist the Agency to setup etc; research recipes, food literacy and education. The top 3 questions we want to have the students answer from the workshop participants are:

  • Do you know how to cook the vegetables you get?
  • Would you like to participate in a workshop to learn how to learn how to cook or preserve for longer time, the fruits and vegetables you get?
  • Are you eating more fruit and vegetables because of the food bag you receive?

The question to ask of the Agency (hosting partner) for the Workshop is:

  • Did the workshop increase food security for your participants?
  • How did the workshop increase community capacity and skill building for your participants?

UBC Students will continue the work done by students in the Spring 2017. Read their final report: http://lfs350.landfood.ubc.ca/community-projects/2017-winter-projects/hastings-sunrise-community-food-network-community-food-circles/

Skills Preferred

  • Outgoing and capacity to make phone calls, setup meetings and gather information from community members;
  • Observational skills, note taking, report writing, data analysis to cross-tabulate with other focus group results.

Skills to Be Developed

  • Research of models, processes, systems, best practices as it relates to the project and strategies to address the barriers identified to accessing healthy food
  • Community capacity building through network processes
  • Community engagement, dialogues and outreach in a non-profit setting

Preferred Days of Week and Hours

  • Some evening meetings and weekend. The project scope should fit the hours for the course.

Experiential Learning Opportunities

  • Work on the Templeton High School garden; assist in education sessions at the feeder elementary schools including after school snack prep/ cooking with kids.
  • Assist / menu planning in food programs at the community centres
  • Offer a food workshop at a neighbourhood house or community centre
  • Assist with a community kitchen
  • Work to update the food assets, the businesses in our area, and faith based contact lists.
  • Work on social media strategies and updating the website

Expected Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

  • Community engagement that includes developing broad-based information gathering strategies, working with stakeholders and partners
  • The steps and process of community capacity building with facilitator training and focus groups with community members.

Organizational Outcomes

  • Increased community capacity in food security
  • Trained community facilitators and leaders to conduct outreach and focus groups.
  • A better understanding of barriers to our residents access to healthy food based on the reports and focus groups
  • Recommendations on strategies to address identified barriers
source: http://wiki.ubc.ca/Course:LFS350/Projects/Fall2017/HSCN_FoodCircles