Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Our trip to Hopedale was very eventful and full of surprises. We got to see many of Fran’s relatives, took some good walks.

Our main reason for being there was to give a presentation [Saturday afternoon] on my experiences in growing food, what types grow best, the difficulty in securing the growing medium [soil] and such like.

Fran gave a short talk on community freezers and there importance to the communities.

Collage of the participants in the workshop.

Hopedale has been involved in a project put on by the Food Security Network of NL. Two people were hired to put together an asset analysis and some priority setting. A wide section of the community was consulted and a committee formed to set goals and priorities.

From all the consultations community freezers and community gardens were two of the higher priorities given.

I’m not experienced in giving these sorts of talks so not sure if it was very educational, there were quite a few questions and a debate has started, so it could not have been all bad.

Of the 27 participants three already have gardens of some sort and when asked how many would be interested in getting into gardening well over half indicated in the positive.

I emphasized the difficulty in getting things on the go but to not be deterred with one years lousy crop, give it a go the following years, the rewards will be worth it the long term.

Also emphasized was starting small individual gardens would be best to gain experience, and then get into larger community type gardens so more can benefit.

Pictured is the FULL freezer and a gentleman walking across Hopedale harbor with a wheelbarrow full of food for his dogs.

The Hopedale community freezer program is well under way and run quite well when compared to say the Nain community freezer.

This year people over 60 in Hopedale received a caribou and the freezer is full of deer meat and partridge. There are ongoing talks on expending the list of qualified persons to receive the meat but the important thing is that it is operating, again compared to the Nain, a program which is a highly kept secrete and the freezer is half the size of Hopedale’s and devoid of any meat of any kind.

Kinda lucky we had that sunshine window yesterday, fog rolled in fast around 5.50 pm and sounds like the whole coast is socked in this morning.

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