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Canada: Potlotek one of first Atlantic Indigenous communities to launch garden initiative

A bird’s-eye view of the greenhouse and field garden installed at Potlotek First Nation. (Submitted by Andrea Durfee)

Digital Mi’kmaq hopes to install greenhouses at all 32 First Nations communities in Atlantic Canada

By Cassidy Chisholm
CBC News
Dec 26, 2020


“I think food insecurity has long been a reality for most First Nations communities across all of Canada since, well, colonialism,” said Marni Fullerton, the director of Digital Mi’kmaq.

In the fall of 2014, a study funded by Health Canada asked more than 1,000 people from 11 communities in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Newfoundland about their health and diet.

The study found that of the Indigenous communities surveyed in Atlantic Canada, 31 per cent of households were food insecure, and nine per cent severely food insecure.

Fullerton said she expects the greenhouses will be ready to operate by spring.

“That’s really, really important. They’ll have access to fresh, healthy, local food,” she said.

The initiative will also create jobs in each community. In Potlotek, there will be 12 new jobs — five will be year-round and seven will be seasonal.

“This is a very grassroots build…. The communities, of course, have also contributed resources and land, heart and soul and ideas,” Fullerton said.

Read the complete article here.


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