City Council declares 2022 as the Year of the Garden in Ottawa in time to celebrate 25th anniversary of the Ottawa Community Gardening Network

Today, City of Ottawa Council declared 2022 as the Year of the Garden in Ottawa, as part of Canada’s Year of the Garden 2022, organized by Gardens Canada, to celebrate today’s vibrant garden culture, and create important legacies for a sustainable future.

Click here to read the official Motion passed today by the City of Ottawa.

Every one of us at Just Food is thrilled to celebrate 2022 as both the Year of the Garden and Just Food’s 25th year of engagement and development in the community!

Community gardens were declared Essential Food Services at the height of the pandemic in April 2020 as they served to support food security and reduce social isolation, and gardens are increasingly recognized as being crucial components of socially equitable and ecologically sustainable communities. Gardens contribute innumerable benefits to individual and public health and wellbeing, and make for safer and more interconnected communities.

We encourage everyone to celebrate the Year of the Garden in your own community gardens, and we hope this gives your team good notice to think about how you may do so over the winter.

Many thanks to each and every one of you who continue to play such an important role in creating and maintaining the flourishing gardens that make up the growing mosaic of food and beauty across our communities!

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation
September 30, 2021
Shared Resources

Ressources partagées pour 30 septembre
Journée nationale de la vérité et de la réconciliation

Nourish – Food is our medicine:
https://www.nourishhealthcare.ca/food-is-our-medicine-landing-page
Food is Our Medicine is designed to introduce health care professionals and leaders to new and different ways of understanding the complex relationships between Indigenous foodways, reconciliation, healing and health care.

Food Secure Canada article (2015):
Food as a Weapon in the Residential School System
https://foodsecurecanada.org/residential-schools-and-using-food-weapon
L’Alimentation utilisée comme une arme dans les pensionnats autochtones
https://foodsecurecanada.org/fr/alimentation-pensionnat-autochtone

16 Resources to help Settlers Understand and Advance Indigenous Reconciliation:
https://charityvillage.com/16-resources-to-help-settlers-understand-and-advance-indigenous-reconciliation/

Reconciliation Education:
https://www.reconciliationeducation.ca/ (English)
https://www.reconciliationeducation.ca/francais (Français)

Marking the National Day – (September 29):
Souligner la Journée nationale – (29 Septembre):
https://csps-efpc.gc.ca/events/national-day-truth-reconciliation/index-eng.aspx (English)
https://csps-efpc.gc.ca/events/national-day-truth-reconciliation/index-fra.aspx (Français)

The National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation (NCTR): https://nctr.ca/
Le Centre national pour la vérité et la réconciliation (CNVR): https://nctr.ca/?lang=fr

Circles of Reconciliation:
https://circlesforreconciliation.ca/new-resources/

One Day’s Pay
https://www.onedayspay.ca/

Just Food Is Hiring!

People who are from equity-seeking groups, often under-represented in leadership roles, are strongly encouraged to apply.

Position: Ottawa Community Gardening Network Coordinator
Organization: Just Food (www.justfood.ca)
Location of work: Ottawa, city-wide. (Office located at Just Food Community Farm and working from home an option)
Salary: $47,320/year, prorated to 28 hrs/week ($26/hr + standard MERCs).
*Note this is experience-dependent.
Term: Permanent Employment position

This position facilitates the Community Gardening Network of Ottawa (CGN) which is an information and resource-sharing network that supports the sustainable community development of food-growing gardens and initiatives within the City. The CGN program is community-driven, and has been in existence since 1997 – 24 years!
In 2021, the Network consists of approximately 100 food-growing community gardening projects.

Just Food serves a role as a food system player, and is a pivotal member in the sector.
Someone with a strong equity lens, a comprehensive food systems lens, and experience working in collaboration across diverse people is required.

The central activities of the CGN are:

  • Assist community groups to establish and maintain community gardens, including working with private and public landowners to increase access to land and coordinating
  • Facilitate communications across, and support resources within, new and existing gardens/projects, including but not limited to coordinating the Community Garden Development Fund (CGDF), skills building workshops, and other shared resources
  • Facilitate distribution of seed and soil to gardeners around the city who have difficulty accessing these materials due to financial limitations or otherwise.
  • Develop resources, events and training to build gardening, preserving and composting skills across Ottawa.
  • Raise awareness in Ottawa about community gardening through media, public meetings, special events, and online communications.
  • Facilitate creation of a supportive policy environment.

Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Coordinate the Community Gardening Network program:
    • Work closely with volunteer community garden coordinators to start new community gardens and support existing gardens in the Network.
    • Event coordination (meetings, workshops, training and other special events)
    • Communications with and across members
  • Manage all aspects of the Community Garden Development Fund
    • Conduct full applications process, from promotions through to dispersing funds and reporting, including facilitating the allocations committee.
    • Ongoing communications with all involved stakeholders in the projects.
  • Liaise with diverse stakeholders including community garden coordinators, City of Ottawa, NCC, Schools, landowners, Community Associations.
  • Supervise volunteers, interns, students to support the CGN program.
  • Complete reports as appropriate and required.
  • Identify and work to fill gaps to enable community and home gardeners to garden, in particular leading initiatives to support those who experience barriers to access seeds, seedlings, soil, compost and land.

Skills Needed:
This position does not require knowing everything about how to garden. While it can help, this position is a coordinating, community development position, that requires a keen interest in learning about gardening, community gardening, sustainable and equitable food systems, yet more so, the skills below as essential:

  • Knowledge/experience of working in a fast-paced, not-for-profit environment.
  • Community development experience, with an ability to communicate, coordinate and resolve differences across diverse stakeholders.
  • Strong communication skills, with a comfort and confidence speaking with members and the public in person, by phone and by email.
  • Good presentation and facilitation skills to host and facilitate workshops.
  • Strong awareness and ability to work with an equity lens, with ability to work with community members from diverse backgrounds.
  • Strong administrative skills, including attention to detail and budget management.
  • Good writing and editing skills for both promotions/marketing and reporting.
  • Strong organizational skills, with ability to multi-task across multiple projects.
  • Experience in managing volunteers, students.
  • Ability to balance taking initiative with strong team communication and collaboration skills.
  • Ability to work independently and productively in a home and an office environment.
  • Ability to work in English, with strong preference for ability to converse/read/write in French, and/or speak/write in other languages.

Work location is largely home-based, and at times at Just Food’s office at the Just Food Community Farm, where a dynamic community of farmers, community growers, community partners and educators work alongside each other. Community event space, including the century-old red barn, greenhouses, pavilion and 150 acres, serves as a city-wide hub for activities on food, farming, sustainability and self-reliance.

Start time: ASAP.
If required to provide notice that extends beyond Oct 14, we are seeking that the successful person can observe the workshop Oct 14 6-8pm.

Please send your cover letter, resume and three references, together in one document to moe@justfood.ca with the subject header: CGN Coordinator Candidate

Deadline: Friday Sept 24, 2021, 4:00pm. Interviews will be online the following week.
All candidates will be informed if they are to receive an interview or not.

UPCOMING WORKSHOPS – How to Start a Community Garden

Join us to learn about the steps involved in starting a community garden. How to search for land, what is essential when starting a community garden, the support available, tips for organizing, and much more!

Next session:  Thursday, November 18.

Suitable for new gardens, or existing gardens looking to onboard new volunteer coordinators.

The attendance of at least one garden coordinator (or a member of the garden who is working on the proposal) at a How to Start a Community Garden workshop is a requirement in order to apply for funding through the Community Garden Development Fund (CGDF). The CGDF applicant must have attended a workshop in the past 3 years, as criteria and processes have changed throughout the years, and we encourage more than one to attend at a time.

WHERE: ONLINE ZOOM MEETING

WHEN: Thursday, November 18th, 6:00-8:00 pm. CLICK THIS LINK to register.

FOR QUESTIONS please contact moe@justfood.ca

We look forward to seeing you at this interactive workshop!

New Funds for Outdoor Community Hub at the Just Food Community Farm

Just Food Community Farm Outdoor Hub

The Canadian Government —via the Canada Community Revitalization Fund— along with co-funding partners at the Gloucester Emergency Food Cupboard, Just Food, City of Ottawa Rural Affairs and NCC have funded new outdoor community spaces, including a large pavilion and balcony, as well as a four-season, geothermal greenhouse, at the Just Food Community Farm. The accessible, open-air balcony and covered pavilion, along with the demonstration greenhouse, will immediately create important multi-use spaces, to bring community together safely, provide program/meeting space for diverse groups, permanent home for a weekly farmers’ market, and education/demonstration spaces.

COMMUNIQUÉ de presse suivre

Ongoing, updated info about visiting Just Food Community Farm

Rules change throughout each season. Please check back regularly.
Each person visiting the Just Food Community Farm is responsible for knowing and following the rules.
Guest visitors to the farm visit at your own risk, and if not following the rules will be considered trespassing and asked to leave.

Rules for visiting Just Food Community Farm

  • All current COVID rules must be followed including 2 metres distance and masked when this is not possible.
  • This is not a dog-park. Dogs are not automatically allowed on the property and Just Food is not responsible for problems arising from dogs on the property.
  • No dogs allowed in areas marked prohibited. Note: Areas can change year to year and longstanding farmers are allowed dogs in prohibited areas, and will have ribbon on their leash.
  • Any dogs must be leashed around ALL other active garden areas, noting new North end garden site. Dogs are prohibited from all garden fields.
  • ALL feces must be removed off the property immediately.
  • All dogs must be under instant control at all times, and must not negatively affect other people, dogs, animals, wildlife, vehicles, etc. If not, your dogs are not welcome.
  • No one can drive on the farm roads (past the parking lot) unless in a vehicle registered with a farm project on site, with a vehicle permit showing in the window.
  • No one can bike through the property (new rule, given 2020 level and speed of bike traffic) as too many children, dogs, people and vehicles. You can walk your bike through the farm when visiting.
  • Rules posted on all signs on the farm must be followed.
  • Farm gate is closed to vehicles every evening and does not open at a regular time.
  • Open Hours for walkers change and in part, reflect daylight hours.
  • Current hours for walkers: 6:30am-8:00pm
  • Hours between May 1 – September 30: 6:30am-9:00pm

This is a functional farm, nursery and program area.
Just Food staff and Board, as the lease-holders for the property, are responsible for stewarding the land and since inception, have strived to maintain a vibrant, inclusive community space to meet multiple interests.
In order to do so, and as the lease-holders, we have the only say on who can access the farm at any point.

Here’s to a vibrant, safe space for diverse activities for all people engaged at the JFCF!

UPCOMING WORKSHOPS – How to Start a Community Garden

Join us on June 3 or June 5, 2021 and learn about the steps involved in starting a community garden. How to search for land, what is essential when starting a community garden, the support available, tips for organizing and much more!

Suitable for new gardens, or existing gardens looking to onboard new volunteer coordinators.

The attendance of at least one garden coordinator (or a member of the garden who is working on the proposal) at a How to Start a Community Garden workshop is a requirement in order to apply for funding through the Community Garden Development Fund (CGDF). The CGDF applicant must have attended a workshop in the past 3 years, as criteria and processes have changed throughout the years, and we encourage more than one to attend at a time.

TWO IDENTICAL SESSIONS – CHOOSE EITHER ONE

WEEKDAY EVENING SESSION: THURSDAY, June 3, 7:00–9:00 pm.

WHERE: ONLINE ZOOM MEETING

RSVP: CLICK THIS LINK TO REGISTER

WEEKEND AFTERNOON SESSION: Saturday, June 5, 4:00–6:00 pm.

WHERE: ONLINE ZOOM MEETING

RSVP: CLICK THIS LINK TO REGISTER

FOR QUESTIONS please contact Sun Shan at communitygardening@justfood.ca.

2021 CSA Farm Guide

Are you looking for fresh produce from a local farm to your table, all summer long? Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) boxes are a great way to connect with and support local farmers, by ordering your seasonal produce in advance. CSA farms usually offer weekly delivery or pick-up of vegetables. CSA shares can also include meat, flowers, fruits, herbs and eggs.

Visit our 2021 CSA Farm Guide for a list of farms in this region with shares available for 2021, and then search our Buy Local Food Guide map to see if there is a CSA farm near you. 

In a CSA, the farmer grows food for a predetermined group of eaters. Eaters enter into an agreement of purchase with the grower prior to the start of the season. The farmer gains a guaranteed market, and the consumer gains high quality, fresh food as it becomes available.

Don’t wait! CSA shares sell out quickly, and are limited. Farmers have seen increased community support and interest in their shares, with orders being placed earlier in the season than usual due to the increase of demand for delivery options during the Covid-19 pandemic. Become part of the buy-local movement, and support local agriculture!

Get Ready to Garden 2021 | Learn Through (Virtual) Gardening Workshops and Resources

Gardening 2021 Workshops and Resources in Ottawa

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Click to see details below:

1. Just Food Gardening Basics – Free Workshops

2. Free Garden Guides for Ottawa in English, French, Mandarin, Spanish, Arabic

3. Canadian Organic Growers Gardening Symposium 2021



1. Just Food Gardening Basics – Free Workshops 

Gardening Basics brought to you by Community Gardening Network at Just Food, for home gardeners or community gardeners alike.

This series aims to cover every aspect of gardening, from starting seeds to growing in smaller and larger spaces, and is taught by experienced gardeners from the Ottawa region. 

These free workshops and slides can be accessed on Just Food site HERE

Topics include:



2. Free Garden Guides for Ottawa 

Available in five languages! And YES by all means share them!

CGN Garden Guide – English (pdf, 2.5 MB)

Le guide du jardinier – French (pdf, 2.2 MB)

Guía para huertos – Spanish (pdf, 2.1 MB)

دليل البستن ة – Arabic (pdf 2.4 MB)

渥太华菜园指南 – Mandarin (pdf 2.5 MB)



3. Canadian Organic Growers Gardening Symposium 2021

Just in time! Canadian Organic Growers (COG) local chapter and its wonderful Senior Organic Gardeners (SOG) program, will be hosting their Gardening Symposium 2021 through a series of online gardening workshops. These at-cost workshops are run on Wednesday afternoons.

  1. Wed, Mar 3, 2021 1:30 PM – Supporting Your Immune System: In the Garden with Elycia Kellett
  2. Wed, Mar 10, 2021 1:30 PM | Container Gardens- With Rob Danforth
  3. Wed, Mar 17, 2021 1:30 PM | Making Your Own Herbal Teas – With Kayoki Whiteduck
  4. Wed, Mar 24, 2021 1:30 PM | Pollinator Gardens- With Rob Danforth
  5. Wed, Mar 31, 2021 1:30 PM | Square Foot Gardens: Companion Plants with Chelsea Dozois

The above sessions can be registered on SOG’s event page HERE.

Down to Earth – check out the wealth of food growing and gardening notes from our partner Canadian Organic Grower at https://www.cog.ca/ottawa/down-to-earth-newsletter/.



HAPPY GARDENING!

March 2021 | WORKSHOP How to Start a Community Garden

Community Gardening Network of Ottawa
Join us on March 23 or March 27, 2021 and learn about the steps involved in starting a community garden. How to search for land, what is essential when starting a community garden, the support available, tips for organizing and much more!

Suitable for new gardens, or existing gardens looking to onboard new volunteer coordinators.

The attendance of at least one garden coordinator (or a member of the garden who is working on the proposal) at a How to Start a Community Garden workshop is a requirement in order to apply for funding through the Community Garden Development Fund (CGDF). The CGDF applicant must have attended a workshop in the past 3 years, as criteria and processes have changed throughout the years, and we encourage more than one to attend at a time.

TWO IDENTICAL SESSIONS – CHOOSE EITHER ONE

TUESDAY EVENING SESSION: Tuesday, March 23, 6:30–8:30pm.

WHERE: ONLINE ZOOM MEETING

RSVP: CLICK THIS LINK TO REGISTER

SATURDAY AFTERNOON SESSION: Saturday, March 27, 3:00–5:00pm.

WHERE: ONLINE ZOOM MEETING

RSVP: CLICK THIS LINK TO REGISTER

FOR QUESTIONS please contact Sun Shan at communitygardening@justfood.ca.