Food Without Borders and Cultural Arts Program
- After long 2 years of a Global Pandemic, and increased numbers in food insecurity, we started our latest program Food Without borders. Members of the community from different cultures will come together to cook a meal from their country of origin while sharing stories associated with the plate. The rest of the participants will help cook this meal for over 200 people, unifying the community as well as promoting diversity and multicultural environments.
- Viola Desmond Outdoor Theatre at their garden site in the summer of 2015. Over 70 community members came out each Thursday evening in July and August to enjoy a free film. Arabic subtitles were added to each film. Our Syrian community members greatly appreciated this and stated they felt very included in Hope Blooms.
- We have included weekly culturally appropriate art programs, adding to our holistic experiential learning style, and celebrating the cultures that represent our children and youth. African dance, indigenous beading, African drums, screenprinting, and watercolors have been some of the programs youths have learned from!
Culinary Arts Program
The Culinary Arts program is a weekly after school program, led by a Red Seal Chef who is a long-time volunteer with Hope Blooms. The hands-on curriculum is created with youth involvement and based on a first year Culinary Institute course.
- Food literacy skills
- Culinary terminology
- Development of culturally relevant recipes
- Kitchen and food production management
- Hygiene and food safety
- Menu development
- Money management and shopping on a limited budget
- Cultural customs and traditions around food and celebrations
In addition, the youth test their skills learning about creative culinary methods with a competitive edge. They host monthly community suppers and quarterly “black box” team competitions.
Each month culturally-relevant guest chefs come in to provide specialty experiential workshops. At the end of the program, all youth study for and obtain their Safe Food Handlers designation.
This program is supported by the Halifax Community Investment Fund.
In 2016, 4 of our youth received their Masters Organic Gardeners Certification – the youngest in Canada to receive this University credit.