Thunder Bay·Superior Morning

Thunder Bay group to 'Dig into Urban Agriculture'

Thunder Bay residents are being asked to dig deep and come up with ideas on transforming public spaces into gardens, through the "Dig into Urban Agriculture" initiative.

New project hopes to grow food and make the city a greener place

This garden project on Court Street in Thunder Bay is an example of urban agriculture in the city. (supplied)

Thunder Bay residents are being asked to dig deep and come up with ideas on transforming public spaces into gardens, through the "Dig into Urban Agriculture" initiative.

The project is a collaborative effort between three community groups; The Thunder Bay and Area Food Strategy, Earthcare and Roots to Harvest.

Urban agriculture is growing around the world as people want to reconnect with their food. Projects in other communities range from gardens on rooftops to turning boulevards into growing spaces, said Roots to Harvest school program coordinator Jody Mitchell. 

Mitchell said they want to engage more people in Thunder Bay in urban agriculture and build on the long local tradition of backyard gardening in the city.
Kendal Donahue (left) with the Thunder Bay and Area Food Strategy and Jody Mitchell (right) with Roots to Harvest say gardening can empower people. (Supplied)

'Building community around food'

But for Kendal Donahue, the coordinator with the Thunder Bay and Area Food Strategy, it's about more than home gardening.

"It's about building community around food, something we can bring to park spaces. It's educational and builds a more adaptable urban environment," she said.

 It's about helping citizens move forward with their agriculture projects armed with what they need, said Donahue.  Organizers want to connect people with experts from the city, public health and community leaders.

"If someone wants to grow food on boulevards for example, how do you do it, what plants do you grow and do you need to worry about putting off your neighbours, " said Donahue.

People have until April 1 to submit their suggestions to the food strategy. On April 22, Earth Day, the group is hosting an Ideas to Action Cafe, where interested participants can find out information to get their ideas blooming.

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