News and announcements 07/29/2014

Toronto – The Ontario Trillium Foundation has given Community Food Centres Canada a five-year, $1.25 million grant that will fund the development of two new Community Food Centres in Ontario, and will also support existing centres in Perth, Stratford and Toronto’s Regent Park neighbourhood. The grant is a bold investment in a new social innovation that will significantly impact the health of low-income communities.

“Community Food Centres works tirelessly to improve the life of Ontarians by increasing access to healthy food – that’s often locally grown. The Ontario Trillium Foundation is thrilled to support CFCs as they bring people and groups together to fight for this shared goal,” said Andrea Cohen Barrack, CEO of the Ontario Trillium Foundation.

Funds to The Table (Perth), The Local (Stratford) and the Regent Park (Toronto) Community Food Centres will be used to increase capacity to leverage local funds, support, and awareness for critical frontline programs that strive to reduce hunger, improve physical and mental health, and reduce social isolation.

The grant will also support the development of two new Community Food Centres in low-income communities in Ontario in 2015 and 2017, in partnership with local agencies. These new projects will deliver programs customized to local needs in the areas of food access, food skills and education and engagement. These “places for food” provide a space where people can come together for a simple healthy meal, a cooking and fitness program, or an afterschool cooking and gardening program. All programs are rooted in the philosophy that good food can play a positive role in peoples’ lives, and can be a way to build health, hope and community.

“The generous support of the Ontario Trillium Foundation will be invaluable in helping us to build these two new Community Food Centres, and to make the case that healthy food can be a transformative force in low-income communities,” said Nick Saul, President and CEO of Community Food Centres Canada. “Diet-related illnesses are on the rise, especially in poorer communities, and rates of poverty and hunger are holding steady. It’s high time for coordinated investment in preventive, community-building solutions that address these problems in new and innovative ways.  One day we hope that these places for food will be in every community, as rooted in the neighbourhood as a health centre or a YMCA.”

Founded in 2012, Community Food Centres Canada works with partners across Canada to create Community Food Centres that bring people together to grow, cook, share and advocate for good food. Three other centres are currently in development outside Ontario, in Winnipeg, Dartmouth and Moncton. The total number of Community Food Centres is expected to grow to 15 by 2017. CFCC also works with the broader food movement to build greater capacity for impact and to empower communities to work toward a healthy and fair food system. Ontario Trillium Foundation funds will also support CFCC’s work to resource Community Food Centres with the knowledge, evaluation, and fundraising and communications tools they need to be successful.

The Ontario Trillium Foundation’s support will be recognized at a public launch event for the Regent Park Community Food Centre on September 18, 2014. Details of the event will be made available as soon as confirmed.  

For more information about Community Food Centres Canada, our partners, and how we measure impact, please visit www.cfccanada.ca.

A leading grantmaker in Canada, the Ontario Trillium Foundation strengthens the capacity of the voluntary sector through investments in community-based initiatives. An agency of the Government of Ontario, OTF builds healthy and vibrant communities.  For more information about the Ontario Trillium Foundation, visit www.otf.ca 

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For more information:
Christina Palassio, Director of Communications
Community Food Centres Canada
416 531 8826 ext. 229
christina@cfccanada.ca