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TYFPC Spotlight

An interview with Emily Martyn on youth and food jobs. 

"Volunteering, and evolving what I could offer to smaller, low-profile projects, was what helped me to become someone people wanted to pay to do things", says Emily, "whenever possible DO the thing you are interested in rather than just LEARNING about it".

Emily is a former TYFPC council member and current Manager of the CRC Regent Park Community Food Centre. Her wise words on getting experience with less established projects and bringing to them to more established ones are rooted in her background as an individual who got her start in the food sector through active involvement in community gardens of different scales, rather than 
through formal academic training in a specifically food-related field. She also speaks as an employer who looks for candidates who have more than just an education. 

Read more of Emily's insights in the full interview posted on our blog

Upcoming Events 

TYFPC Winter Meeting

December 1, 2014  |  6 PM - 8 PM
Metro Hall, Room 308  |  200 Wellington St. W

A new comprehensive report from Food Banks Canada found that approximately 841, 191 Canadians were helped by food banks in March 2014. They reported that the number of Canadians using food banks this past year was 25% higher than in 2008.

National and provincial findings show that women, single-parent families, post-secondary students, aboriginal persons, immigrants and refugees, and people over 65 years of age use food banks the most.

Join us at our next community meeting to discuss food bank access. Our discussion will be led by Abrah McKeen from the school of Social Work at York University, Ryerson Good Food Centre, and North York Harvest Food Bank. To read more about the specific topics on our plate and to RSVP, please visit our event page.

CSI Food Fight

November 19, 2014  |  5 PM - 8 PM
Centre for Social Innovation Regent Park  |  585 Dundas St. E

The first of its kind for CSI, join us at this fair designed to bring together social innovators and disruptors of all walks in order to showcase and discuss the future of food. RSVP to the event and read more about it here.

TFPC Meeting

December 10, 2014  |  2 PM - 5 PM
City Hall, Committee Room  |  100 Queen St. W

Not to be missed, the next TFPC meeting is now scheduled. Tentatively on the agenda is Dr. David McKeown, Toronto's Medical Officer of Health, to meet with the TFPC.  


Past Events

This past weekend our council chair, Dilya Niezova, joined other young leaders at the Food Secure Canada Youth Caucus gathering to discuss food policy, food justice, new farmers and campus and institutional food procurement.  Read more about the Caucus and the meeting here

Committee News


Education Committee

The second edition of the TYFPC's peer-reviewed youth journal, 'Gathering' is now online! The second edition of the TYFPC's peer-reviewed youth journal provides a platform for young, passionate individuals to share their writing and research on the food system. Please check our website for more information.

The Education Committee is also very excited to announce the call out for a 2015 special edition journal. We are looking to include a collection of poetry, short stories, art and photography as well as any other printable forms of expression to showcase the diversity of connections and understandings around food. Please connect with the Education Leads, if you have any questions.



Executive Committee

The first event for this year’s council was a weekend retreat, where the council not only met each other for the first time, but multiple brainstorming sessions generated three main themes, which will be used over the course of the year to guide the focus and activities of the TYFPC. The first theme encompasses the massive issues of climate change and the corporate food system. The next theme attempts to look at topics from a class and ethnicity lens, incorporating issues of diversity, inclusion, and exclusion in terms of access to food, representation on the TYFPC council and in the food movement in general. The third and final theme focuses on funding and opportunities for youth in the food movement. This broaches issues surrounding funding or employment for youth in the food movement or looking at accessibility of land in the city for food production. 

In light of the invigorating and encouraging retreat, the members of executive team have been reflecting on how to improve the internal operations of the council. This includes circulating the first survey to our members to ask for critical feedback on what the executive committee can improve upon and we are doing well. Continuing an internal evaluation of the council is one of the goals of this year’s executive team. 



Network Committee

The Network Committee has been having a blast getting to know the movers and shakers in Toronto’s movement to reshape the food system. Connecting with all of you is an exhilarating reminder of how collective energy can move uncertainty or fear into inspiration, and ideas into action. Our mandate on the Network Committee, then, is to join up like-minded individuals and to celebrate the incredible efforts of this multi-faceted movement.
This autumn has been exploding with events in agriculture and food. 2014 is the International Year of Family Farming, and World Food Day was also celebrated across Canada on October 16th. New College of the University of Toronto hosted 3 days of events looking at methods of sustainable food production and food culture around the world. Hear about Christine’s experience learning about Agro-ecology and Alia’s experience with Food and Indigeneity in Belize.
Victoria met with public health practitioners and thinkers at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health conference From Global Mess to Local Stress. This was a great space to link with the next generation of practitioners engaging food and health into policy. Catered by local organizations like the Afghan Women’s Catering Group, this annual conference is worth penciling into your agenda for next year!
On October 30, FoodShare also celebrated a productive and inspiring season in their SchoolGrown project with a crowd-funded new vehicle to transport food, a bustling station at two farmers markets, and a smiling team of paid youth employees. Victoria was lucky enough to come together with urban farmers, student growers, and partners on the gorgeous Eastdale rooftop for an evening to reflect on this year’s successes over some hot SchoolGrown soup.
In addition to participation and representation at events, this year we will expand on the Network Contact List, a one-stop online resource to enable access to work with food organizations (coming soon!). We will also create a resource to link up farmers who are interested to work with young people looking for food growing experience.

If you or your contacts would like to be represented on either of these resources, please feel free to message us.


Advocacy Committee

The Advocacy Committee is excited to share our vision for the coming year. We will be continuing to host discussion groups for youth to meet up and talk about food. We will be supporting and creating advocacy campaigns that enhance social justice and equity in the City and are related to food issues. Some of the ways we want to advocate are by sharing information and engaging in direct actions such as deputations to city council, letter writing to government representatives, and attending rallies. We will also be collaborating with like-minded organizations to raise awareness of local issues and opportunities related to food.
The If I Ruled T.O. Youth Summit on November 29th is a free one-day think-tank and conference that brings together youth from across Toronto to discuss and address issues impacting them. The TYFPC is thrilled to be facilitating a discussion on 'What prevents young people from eating healthier' and is looking forward to thinking through solutions together. We would love to see you there and hear your ideas! For more information and to register for the event click here.

For more information and to get involved in the Advocacy Committee, email Andrew McAllister and/or Rivka Kushner.
Copyright © 2014 Toronto Youth Food Policy Council, All rights reserved.

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