According to Farm to School BC the secret to getting young people excited about healthy, local food is simple – get them involved by providing opportunities to grow, prepare and taste it!
Established in 2007, Farm to School BC (F2SBC) is a diverse and expanding provincial program that works to support healthy eating and sustainable regional food systems.
This is done by working to have local food in schools, providing hands-on learning activities, and building school-community connections. Farm to School BC programs are tailored to the interests and needs of each school and community.
To date, F2SBC has supported 33 Farm to School initiatives across Northern B.C. and is committed to supporting and inspiring even more programs across the region. Recognizing the need to provide on-the-ground support, the Northwest Regional Hub was launched, Margo Peill as the Hub’s community animator.
Margo will be working with schools, farmers, and community partners in the region, which includes Coast Mountains School District (#82) and the Bulkley Valley School District (#54), to strengthen local partnerships and networks that will support sustainable F2SBC programs in the years to come.
Peill said each school develops their own unique projects that work within their school and community. Some projects include cultivating bountiful school gardens, experimenting with tower gardening and microgreens in the classroom, salad bar programs and field trips to forage traditional and wild foods.
“The projects really do look different in each school, and so far, that is something we’ve seen the Northwest Hub really excelling at — coming up with creative solutions to incorporate Farm to School BC projects into the curriculum and classroom,” said Peill.
“We’re really excited to take a community development approach to growing Farm to School BC programs in the Northwest region. Farm to School BC is administered by the Public Health Association of BC and supported by the Province of British Columbia and the Provincial Health Services Authority.
Emilia Moulechkova is a registered dietitian with Northern Health’s population health team.