Next year, if people in a cooking class at the Nelson Community Food Centre need fresh herbs, they can harvest some just outside the door.
The centre, formerly known as the Food Cupboard, located in the Nelson United Church, has just constructed 14 raised vegetable garden beds on their doorstep between the church and Josephine Street.
The centre’s Andrew Creighton says the garden’s location is key.
“That is where the magic happens — when people walk into our food bank to get some food,” he says, “they can walk outside, see people planting, weeding, harvesting, and hopefully they will want to get involved, roll up their sleeves, do some gardening.”
The garden was formerly on a property at the corner of Hoover and Ward, but the land was sold and a new location had to be found.
“That was a lovely spot up there,” Creighton says. “It was great as far as production went, but it was under-attended by the low income folks we like to serve, so when that was winding down, we looked into other options.”
The new raised beds sit on land owned by the city, which helped with site preparation.
The centre has four programs: the Good Food Bank, the Food Skills Program (cooking, preparing, canning), Harvest Rescue (picking donated fruit) and the garden.