Richmond Food Asset Map – Low Cost Meals






Project Title

Richmond Food Asset Map – Low Cost Meals

Project Description

This project is intended to gather information about community food assets across the city of Richmond. This information is being used to create a Richmond Food Asset Google map. Vancouver Coastal Health Public Health dietitians are working with community partners to create the mapping tool. Key end users of the map will include: community members seeking food assets, service providers, community developers, and promoters of food assets.

Students will be involved in gathering information on the following food asset in Richmond:

  • Free or Low Cost Meals – Low Cost Meals (low cost prepared meals/snacks that are provided by various organizations and groups in the community).

The key student deliverables include:

  • Gather information on the above mentioned food asset in the city of Richmond. Update an Excel document of the above food asset category. This part of the project will most likely involve contacting key community partners, organizations and businesses and researching information online to ensure that the information in the excel document is correct and formatted consistently. A discussion script, including an introduction to the tool and guiding questions, will be provided to UBC students for them to use when contacting food assets. Students will also be provided with instructions on how to add data and update the excel document.
  • Interview interested community members and organizations (e.g. staff and volunteers of the Richmond Food Security Society and the Sharing Farm) to trial the Richmond Food Asset Map tool and gather their feedback. Feedback forms will be given to students to interview interested staff or community members when gathering feedback.
  • Write a summary of feedback received from these Richmond community partners. Provide recommendations for next steps of the project, based on both the overall map and specific food asset category assigned. (Feedback and recommendations will hopefully be used to assist Vancouver Coastal Health and future LFS 350 students to improve the mapping process and tool).

Project Goal

This project focus is the development of a Richmond Food Asset Map and has 3 main goals.

  • To provide a current, dynamic and easy to use tool for community members and agencies to locate community food assets
  • To increase awareness of low cost meals available through some restaurants or delis in Richmond (e.g. Chinese, Sushi) where food is discounted (about ½ price) at the end of the day (1/2 - 1 hour before closing) so that a family could eat out for about $20.
  • To make it easier for Richmond community partners and advocates to view and determine food asset gaps in the community

Skills Preferred + To Be Developed

  • Good verbal communication and interviewing skills in English (you have an interest in speaking with members of Richmond community and healthcare professionals). Comfortable in communicating with people over the phone and in person.
  • Good written communication skills (you will be contacting people overseeing various Richmond food assets by email as well as by phone)
  • Good observation skills as you will have an opportunity to learn through volunteering with Richmond Food Security Society.
  • Good computer skills and proficient in working with Microsoft Excel spreadsheets (you will be using Google Maps and Microsoft programs)
  • Data collecting skills (you will be obtaining current, accurate and consistent information using a variety of approaches possibly including internet searches, phone calls, email, and in-person)
  • The ability to speak Cantonese, Mandarin or Punjabi would be an asset.

Preferred Days of Week and Hours

Timing is flexible. Students may need to work during business hours in order to contact some farm owners or community partners. However, most of the work can be organized to fit the student’s schedule.

Project Location

Location will vary based on where the food assets are located. Some work can be done over the phone or computer, whereas other work will involve visiting locations in Richmond (all locations are expected to be accessible to the public and by transit.

Project / partner orientation

  • Date/Time: Wednesday, September 19th, 1 - 2 pm
  • Location: Richmond Public Health, Room 906, 8100 Granville Avenue, Richmond

Sample Web page for Richmond Food Asset Map:

Relevant Articles: “Community Food Assessment Guide” by Sue Ross and Zena Simces for the Provincial Health Services Authority, March 2008 found at:

Healthy Built Environment Linkages Toolkit Summary, March 2018, found at:

Richmond Wellness Strategy, 2018 – 2023, found at: Check out the Executive Summary, pages 1-6.

Related Community Service Opportunities for Students

Opportunity to volunteer with the Richmond Food Security Society Program Coordinator to gain an understanding of this food asset.

Organization Information


Vancouver Coastal Health - Richmond

Mission + Vision

  • Our mission

We are committed to supporting healthy lives in healthy communities with our partners through care, education and research.

  • Our vision

We will be leaders in promoting wellness and ensuring care by focusing on quality and innovation.

Guiding Principles + Values:

Our people first strategy shapes how we approach our vision, mission, values and goals. Our VCH strategic priorities is a guiding framework for operational planning, priority setting, and identifying opportunities for strategic investment of time, people and financial resources.

Our Values:

  • Service: We will provide outstanding service and respond to needs in a timely and innovative manner.
  • Integrity: We will serve openly and honestly in a caring and compassionate environment
  • Sustainability: We will focus on effectiveness, efficiency, best practices and health outcomes, holding ourselves responsible for results

Our Goals: We are guided by four organizational goals to achieve our vision.

  • Provide the best care
  • Promote better health for our communities
  • Develop the best workforce
  • Innovate for sustainability

Primary Contact

  • Contact Person(s): Anne Swann, MSc, RD
  • Email:
  • Address: Richmond Public Health, 8100 Granville Avenue, Richmond, BC V6Y 3T6
  • Phone: 604-233-3103
  • Website:
  • Best time(s) method(s) to contact: Monday – Friday, e-mail or phone

Expected Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

  • I hope students will learn how to find food assets in the community and complete the first steps of a community food assessment.
  • I think students will come to appreciate and better understand the wide variety of types of food assets that have the potential to improve the health and nutrition of community members.
  • Students will develop their interviewing and communication skills.

Organizational Outcomes

  • That all of Richmond’s low cost meals will be added to the VCH Richmond Food Asset Map.
  • That key members of our community partners will become aware of the VCH Richmond Food Asset Map and the food assets available for the Richmond population.
  • That Richmond Public Health will complete the Richmond Food Asset Map and then move on to use it to inform actions as outlined in the 2018 – 2023 Richmond Wellness Strategy.