Seed Libraries & Food Literacy Program at Ottawa Public Library!
Ottawa Public Library will offer innovative programs ranging from food genealogy to community gardening workshops to foodie author talks thanks to funding from the Ontario Libraries Capacity Fund. Just Food is a partner on this initiative along with Ottawa Public Health, Market Mobile and the Ottawa Writer’s Festival.
“As a hub for learning, the Library is well-placed to offer this food literacy initiative to help families across Ottawa enjoy healthier, tastier, more affordable meals,”
Tim Tierney, Chair of the Ottawa Public Library Board and Councillor for Beacon Hill – Cyrville.
We are very excited to be involved with this initiative. With this program Just Food will be supporting the establishment of seed libraries at Ottawa Public Library branches.
Seed Libraries are places where community members can “borrow” seeds! Workshops pertaining to improve seed saving skills will be offered periodically to ensure that all participants are well supported to produce seeds from their crops. At the end of the year members will return their borrowed seeds so that other community members can take them out in subsequent years.
Successful participants will produce more than enough seeds from their crops to plant the same variety for many years – and still have enough left over to share with family, and the Ottawa Seed Library!
The first branch was opened in 2016 at the Centrepoint Branch of the Ottawa Public Library. This year we have 40 participants growing 8 varieties of vegetables.
We are currently seeking lead volunteers to manage these seed libraries. No experience is required! Coordinators are primarily expected to assist in the coordination of skill building workshops, arrange times for seed distribution & returns, and supporting other future seed library coordinators as new branches emerge.
If you are interested in being a seed leader, a volunteer, or just want to take out seed next spring, be sure to email email@example.com.
Regional Seed Bank
Just Food will be establishing a regional seed bank at the Just Food Farm in collaboration with Seeds of Diversity and area growers. A focus of this project will be to strengthen seed saving skills among producers in the Ottawa region, as well as widen the volunteer based of skilled growers and record keepers involved in collaborative seed saving.
As part of this project, Just Food will develop a seed saving program , including trials and grow outs, on isolated parts of the Just Food Farm, focused primarily on vegetables. These actions well help to educate future growers and select the best possible seed stock for our region.
Regional seed banks are crucial to the preservation and development of regionally adapted seeds. By selecting and saving seed grown in the Ottawa region we will have better access to regionally adapted varieties and genetic material.
To be in touch with this program please contact firstname.lastname@example.org