Nelson and Food Security

Food security is ensuring that people have access to quality food. In more detail, it includes food distribution to make sure access is equitable, and leverages community resources to build a food system that is healthy and sustainable. Food security includes the full cycle of the food chain from the farmers to the consumers, and non-profit organizations (food banks, community food centres, food hubs, community and school food programs) that exist to help bring food to those that need it.

Nelson Programs

  • Nelson Community Food Centre – 602 Silica St, 250-354-1633. A welcoming environment where people can access healthy food, join a cooking or gardening program, and be a part of a community centred on nutritious food and fun social activities.
    • Farmers Market – Wednesday and Saturday is located at Cottonwood Falls Park
    • Good Food Bank – barrier-free: people can use the service without  justifying their need, and no registration or ID requirements. Our Food Bank Program is now open Wednesdays, ONLY. 1 – 5 pm.
    • Food Skills – check out the online cooking show for tips and tricks to make healthy food with the food provided by the Good Food Bank.
    • The Gardens – Gardeners come from any of the food centres other three programs, and the general public. They claim the gardening experience is beneficial to their physical and mental health, appreciate having a way to give back, and are excited about the new skills they are acquiring.
    • Harvest Rescue – gleans fresh produce, with the help of trained volunteers, from backyard gardens in the Nelson area and vegetables from nearby farms. This produce, that would otherwise go to waste, is then shared with people living on low incomes through the our Good Food Bank and other social service organizations.
    • YouTube channel – learn about composting, cooking and more!
  • Our Daily Bread – 520 Falls Street Offers snacks, and low cost hot breakfasts and lunches. If you are unable to pay for a meal, there are some sponsorship or volunteer opportunities available. NOTE: During the COVID-19 crisis, the drop-in is closed.  Bagged food for pick-up  from 12 noon to 1pm. (No longer priding breakfast). Home delivery of food is an option. Email for details & cost.
  • Salvation Army Nelson – Although the thrift store has closed, they are still providing food services. Check Facebook site for current information.
  • West Kootenay Eco-Society – Creating food security involves all aspects of healthy communities, economies and environments. 

Online Courses for Home Gardening

  • Start Your Own Edible Garden (Gale Courses) – Grow delicious, nutritious fruit and vegetables in your own backyard! In this course, you’ll learn how to give your garden a healthy start and keep it growing strong all season. Sign up with your library card.

Books & more in our Collection

For more information

  • BC Food Security Gateway – online resource that provides BC communities with up-to-date food security information. The Gateway is meant to inform and link you to projects, initiatives, and organizations in British Columbia as well as publications, tools, guides, and news – so that you, too, can contribute to building food security in BC The Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) manages the Gateway in partnership with the Public Health Association of BC (PHABC).
  • Food Secure Canada – Canadian alliance of organizations and individuals working together to advance food security and food sovereignty through three interlocking goals: zero hunger, healthy and safe food, and sustainable food systems.
  • Food Security (BC Government) – Food security is a core public health program under BC’s Guiding Framework for Public Health (PDF, 2.1MB) goal of Healthy Living and Healthy Communities.

Gardening Websites of interest – just a start!