Workshop Summary: Food & Recreation Settings

In March 2019, Public Health Nutritionists from NSHA Central Zone hosted two Food and Recreation Setting workshops in HRM. The purpose of the workshops, hosted by Public Health, was to identify opportunities for collaboration around food programming and food environments in recreation settings. Workshop participants came from a range of geographic areas within NSHA Central Zone (Halifax Regional Municipality, Town of Windsor and the Municipality of West Hants).  They represented a variety of organizations working in recreation settings such as community centres, libraries and after-school programs.

Those working in recreation settings are supporting healthy food environments in a variety of ways including hosting community meals, supporting community gardens, and offering programming on healthy eating and food skills.  Food insecurity also emerged as a common theme in these discussions and organizations are finding innovative ways to support community members experiencing food insecurity.

For more information please see the full Food & Recreation Settings Workshops Summary Report.buffet poster in picture format3



Federal budget has good news for food

In case you missed it, the 2019-2020 federal budget was released last Tuesday and there is some good news for food!

We were excited to see the intention to work with provinces to develop a National School Food Program.  While there is no funding committed, this is a positive step forward.  Today is the LAST DAY to sign the petition for a national school food program!  Please sign and share!

Other exciting highlights from this budget include;

  1. The release of the long-awaited Food Policy for Canada.
  2. Helping Canadian Communities Access Healthy Food: $50 million investment over five years for infrastructure for local food projects (e.g. food banks, farmers’ markets, and other community driven projects).

Here is the full budget announcement and press release from the Ecology Action Centre NourishNS

Food in the Cogswell District

Some exciting food resources may be coming to the Cogswell District!  The engagement report lists the following options to support food access in the area:

  • Community gardens
  • Food trucks
  • Access to healthy food retail (i.e. grocery stores, farmers markets)
  • Ethnic food sources

What food resources would you like to see in the area?

Read the engagement report here

It’s time to #SpeakUp4SchoolFood!

Did you know Canada is the only G7 country without a national school food program? Although, school food programs (primarily breakfast meals) are delivered in 93% of Nova Scotia public schools at no cost to students, these programs  are currently supported by a patchwork of funding. We know schools, staff and parents are doing their best, but they need help to nourish kids while at school.

Nourish Nova Scotia, the Ecology Action Centre and partners have launched a new campaign calling for federal investment in a national school food program.  All students need access to good food to fuel their minds and bodies!

You can help by signing the House of Commons e-petition.  It takes less than a minute to #SpeakUp4SchoolFood

Here are you some ways you can get involved:

  • Attend the webinar on Dec 17th
  • Host your own post card campaign
  • Write your MP
  • Tweet and share!

For full details and access to the resources and tools click here!


Acting Together for Food Policy

On Oct. 17th, members of the Halifax Food Policy Alliance hosted an event called “Acting Together for Food Policy” in partnership with the Halifax and Chebucto West Community Health Boards.  The focus of the day was to:

  1. Increase understanding of policy and how to influence policy
  2. Co-identify policy priorities / solutions that would inform a Food Action Plan for HRM
  3. Identify possible opportunities to act together

Graham Steele also provided helpful tips for communicating with politicians based on his book “What I Learned about Politics: Inside the Rise–and Collapse–of Nova Scotia’s NDP Government”.

There was real excitement in the room for mobilizing around the 2020 municipal elections (can never start too early!). Next steps include:

  • Working to co-create a food security election primer for the 2020 municipal election
  • Planning other opportunities to engage other partners and stakeholders.

See the summary report Acting Together for Food Policy in Halifax_SummaryFinal

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Graphic Harvesting by Susan MacLeod


Reporting back on Our Halifax, Our Food: From Charter to Strategy

The Halifax Food Policy Alliance is pleased to finally share a summary of our Food Charter Engagement events. The report includes a summary of what we heard and next steps. Stay tuned for updates on the Food Charter and Strategy in the coming months. Thank you for your participation! 

HFPA Food Charter Engagement Summary_Final_26June2018