Durham Embraces Board-wide Food Project

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Author: Danielle Lewis

Posted: March 11, 2014

Categories: Edible Education Network / Food in the News / Food in the News / Local Procurement / Schools

Last month the Greenbelt Fund announced support for a fantastic new project to be funded by the Ontario Government for the next year, Cafeteria Connects: Bringing Ontario Foods to Secondary School Cafeterias. Ecosource, an Ontario-based environmental education non-profit, has partnered with Durham District School Board and the food service provider Compass Group Canada to transform school cafeterias in urban centres of Ajax, Whitby, Pickering, Oshawa and the rural areas of Uxbridge, Brock and Scugog. “Ecosource is pleased to build on past successes and partnerships in Peel Region as we work together to change the face of food in Durham District School Board cafeterias and engage students in food literacy in Durham classrooms,” says Stephanie Crocker, Executive Director at Ecosource.

The Cafeteria Connects project will:

  • serve the 2300 secondary school students and more than 1600 high school teachers fresh and healthy meals made from local food
  • train cafeteria staff on how to purchase, track, prepare and communicate about local food options
  • hold events hosted by Ecosource celebrating the produce and farmers of Ontario and Durham
  • provide workshops, developed and delivered by Ecosource, that integrate local food education into several curricula including business, hospitality and family studies

Ecosource, whose work began in Mississauga, is a leader in environmental education in the Region of Peel and provides innovative programs to more than 40,000 youth and their families throughout the province each year. With the organizational mission “to inspire and empower the community to become more environmentally responsible through creative public education” this project is sure to succeed and serve as a model for student nutrition and food literacy programs throughout Ontario.

For more information on the Greenbelt Fund’s Regional Food Grant Program please visit ontariofresh.ca