Urban Roots in Meaford Hall

Urban Roots was on the big screen at Meaford Hall, Sunday past. It documented the revival of community and hope that grew out of the shocking impact of the food desert left in the wake of Detroit’s post-industrial economy.

Corporations, now seeing an opportunity, want to ‘urban farm’ for profit; oblivious to the companion need to strengthen the social fabric of community through farming activities.

No longer ‘flying under the radar’, Detroit Urban Planners will be required to make decisions that accommodate this 21st century, post-industrial phenomenon.

Is there any place in Canada where urban farming is recognized as a valuable economic & social resource; the twin foundation of community and food self-reliance?

British Columbia and Vancouver specifically are on the leading edge.

“As an organization the city is still learning about these businesses and the differences between community gardens and urban farms” says Dr. Wendy Mendes, a Social Planner with the city of Vancouver, “We’re reintegrating our food systems into our urban environment.”

Ten urban farmers in Vancouver sold weekly boxes of produce to 139 families in 2011.

Knowing that it is not explicitly legal, the urban farmers continue to invest their time, labour and money into their land. They do so because of the developing relationship between the Urban Farming Network and all levels of government.

“Armed with a mandate from the Greenest City Action Plan (www.vancouver.ca/greenestcity/) and city council’s call for a just and sustainable food system, the City of Vancouver and urban farmers are rebuilding a framework for urban farming.” (Watershed Sentinel magazine)

The synergistic relationship between urban farms and community was the theme threading through the first three presentations at the Films for Thought Series.

Dirt: The Movie, at Meaford Hall, Sunday, June 10th at 1:30 pm explores the interconnectedness between the vibrant community living in the earth’s soil and our human needs. (Adults $7.00 Students $2.00)

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