Latest updates 05/29/2019 TORONTO, ON, MAY 29, 2019 | Community Food Centres Canada (CFCC) is proud to announce the launch of two new Community Food Centres (CFCs) in British Columbia – the first two in the province. The Mount Paul Community Food Centre (Kamloops, B.C.) and the Nelson Community Food Centre (Nelson, B.C.) join nine existing CFCs in bringing people together to grow, cook, share, and advocate for good food for all. “Too many Canadians across this country worry every day about how they’re going to put food on the table. Poverty and food insecurity have serious impacts on their physical and mental health, on our health-care system, and on the fabric of our society,” said Nick Saul, President and CEO of Community Food Centres Canada. “The Nelson and Mount Paul Community Food Centres are vibrant, welcoming places where people can access healthy food, find friends and support, learn new skills, and take action on the issues that affect their lives. We’re thrilled they’re joining a growing movement of Community Food Centres across the country.” Four million Canadians suffer from food insecurity, and struggle to afford the food they need. People who are food insecure suffer disproportionately from diet-related illnesses like type 2 diabetes, mental health issues, and social isolation. The Nelson and Mount Paul CFCs were formed through partnerships between local agencies and Community Food Centres Canada, which provides a proven program model, evaluation and other supports, and ongoing core funding. Like other Community Food Centres, they are supporting people who live on low incomes to improve their physical and mental health, become less isolated, and take action on the issues of poverty and food insecurity. The Mount Paul Community Food Centre (Kamloops, B.C.) The Mount Paul Community Food Centre is located in Kamloops, a community of 90,000 people in the B.C. interior. The CFC is located in a neighbourhood with a poverty rate that’s significantly higher than that of the area that surrounds it. Developed through a partnership between Interior Community Services and Community Food Centres Canada, and located in a former church that underwent extensive renovations in order to house the centre, The Mount Paul CFC offers programs that increase access to healthy food, empower people to develop new food skills and make new friends, provide food education for youth, and reduce social isolation, especially among seniors. “CFCC has been an incredible source of mentorship and support in helping us establish our program philosophy and approach,” said Dawn Christie, manager of the Mount Paul Community Food Centre. “The Board of Directors of ICS supported the development of the CFC as it aligns with the strategic direction of the organization, and the food security needs of the community. We’re proud to have a Community Food Centre in Kamloops where we can come together to grow, cook, share and advocate for good food for all.” The Mount Paul Community Food Centre will host a grand opening event at their location at 140 Laburnum St. on Tuesday, June 4 between 3 and 6 p.m. Find out more on their website. The Nelson Community Food Centre (Nelson, B.C.) Poverty and food insecurity affect many people in Nelson. Twenty per cent of the population lives below the poverty line. The Nelson Community Food Centre (CFC) offers food access, food skills, and education and engagement programs in a dignified, welcoming space that was recently renovated in order to accommodate the organization’s growing mandate. Founded in 2001 as the Nelson Food Cupboard, the organization has expanded their program offerings to include community kitchens and gardens, food education programs for youth, and now serves an average of 1,800 people each year. “Our team is very happy to have joined the Community Food Centre movement. Over the years, our organization has evolved from a basic food bank into a provider of multiple food programs, each of which is focused on bringing people together to make connections, share, eat, grow, and advocate for good food. We’re proud to work with CFCC and other CFCs towards a future where everyone in this country has the means, knowledge, and voice to access good food with dignity,” said Marya Skrypiczajko, director of the Nelson Community Food Centre. Find out more about the Nelson Community Food Centre at https://nelsoncfc.ca/ -30- Media contacts: Chris Chaplin, Community Food Centres Canada, 416 531 8826 ext. 228, firstname.lastname@example.org Dawn Christie, Mount Paul Community Food Centre, 236-421-1011, email@example.com Andrew Creighton, Nelson Community Food Centre, 250 364 1633, firstname.lastname@example.org Fast facts Household food insecurity remains a serious problem in Canada, with the prevalence ranging from 10.2% in British Columbia to 50.8% in Nunavut. (source) In Canada, low-income individuals are three to four times more likely to report their mental health as fair or poor compared with the highest income group. (source) People living on low incomes are six times more likely to be socially isolated. (source) About Community Food Centres Canada: Community Food Centres Canada builds health, belonging, and social justice in low-income communities across Canada through the power of food. We are active in more than 150 communities across Canada. Find out more at www.cfccanada.ca. To learn more about the Community Food Centre model, watch this short video.