Food security is one of the key concerns for the Black Creek community. Increasing the capacity of the neighbourhood to grow local, fresh produce using organic growing techniques and harvesting rainwater has been a key initiative of the Black Creek SNAP.
Urban agriculture initiatives in the Black Creek neighourhood have included:
Community Garden at San Romanoway
Urban Orchard at San Romanoway
Since 2015, over 20 trees have been planted creating one of the largest urban orchards in Ontario. Orchard People’s Susan Poizner helped to develop the orchard and train residents in fruit tree care. LEARN MORE.
In 2014 the Black Creek SNAP partnered with FoodShare – Toronto on a hugely successful pilot balcony container gardening project at San Romanoway in the Black Creek SNAP. More than 54 balconies received 60 containers and produced 500-plus pounds of fresh produce. LEARN MORE.
Single-Family Homes Urban Agriculture
Participants in the Black Creek SNAP Harvest the Rain program are often avid food-growers with a large proportion of their yards devoted to vegetable gardens and fruit trees. Harvest the Rain program aims to amplify this neighbourhood strength through a number of initiatives. LEARN MORE.
There is a wealth of knowledge that already exists within individuals living in the community who have been growing food all of their lives.
The project helps to connect these people in order share those skills — especially between generations, so that experience is not lost — by coordinating informal workshops led by residents.
Since 2014, the Black Creek SNAP has been running a program in which single family homeowners in the neighbourhood donate their surplus vegetables and fruit from their impressive backyard vegetable gardens to local meal programs.
Partnering with Black Creek Community Farm, the SNAP team coordinated the program, which was piloted in summer 2014. Produce is collected from the homes and then, weighed, documented, washed and stored at the Black Creek Community Farm before it is delivered it to local meal programs.
In 2016 and 2017, more than 800 pounds of hyper-locally grown food has been collected and re-distributed in the Black Creek SNAP neighbourhood.