When it comes to gardening, Rosalind has two green thumbs. But growing in Rosalind’s garden is much more than food; she is growing change, young leaders, and knowledge.
Her view of food goes beyond that of sustenance. It represents collective well-being, societal change, and community betterment. Rosalind says healthy communities are the foundation of a healthy environment; it stirs individuals to action and keeps them engaged.
For Rosalind, education through food is a powerful tool that can build intergenerational and intercultural connections. Through her leadership in garden-based learning projects, Rosalind compels other youth to understand and participate in their local food systems.
Since 2014, she has been the Youth Programs and Volunteer Coordinator at Fresh Roots and spearheaded a number of programs that engage high school students in schoolyard farming projects. In these programs, students not only grow high quality, organic vegetables but also market and sell the produce. Doing so builds critical food literacy and employability skills, enabling students to develop understanding and agency within their local food system.
Growing sustainable food addresses the production side of the food system, but Rosalind is also committed to tackling food waste. Rosalind’s commitment to the “full cycle” of food involves fostering food recovery efforts as Coordinator of the Vancouver Fruit Tree Project. Through advocacy and community engagement efforts, Rosalind is encouraging and educating others to reconsider their relationships to food and food waste.
With climate change already impacting our food systems, a need for cooperation, better understanding of food, and change to our relationship with food is critical. The importance of community resonates throughout Rosalind’s work and her journey as an environmentalist. Food can help establish common ground for individuals in a community and this motivates Rosalind to educate and empower others. She believes that if we are to overhaul our economic and political systems in the years to come, community is at the root of action and leveraging change.
Rosalind has been the Youth Programs and Volunteer Coordinator at Fresh Roots since 2014. As part of this work she has led weekly garden clubs and summer programming where students develop farming and cooking skills in order to become active and engaged “food citizens”.
Rosalind volunteered for Growing Chefs where she led interactive workshop series to empower students to grow and cook their own local, nutritious, and sustainable meals.
Rosalind volunteers for the Intergenerational Landed Learning Project at UBC where she mentors teams of Grade 6 & 7 students through an experiential, outdoor learning program focused on garden care, food systems, civic responsibility and personal and community wellbeing.
Since 2015, Rosalind has served as the Coordinator for the Vancouver Fruit Tree Project. This project helps increase local food security, reduce food waste and animate neighbourhood assets through the unassuming yet powerful act of harvesting and sharing backyard fruits.