No one should have to decide between food and rent, yet a recent study shows that one in six Canadians lives in a household facing a food shortage. With rising food, gas, and accommodations costs in conjunction with supply chain issues and the ongoing impacts of fires, floods, and a pandemic, the community turns to local organizations to meet their nutritional needs.
United Way BC is promoting the 11th Annual South Okanagan Drive-Thru Breakfast, hosted by the Penticton Lakeside Resort and Conference Centre, to raise funds to increase Food Security in our community.
On Thursday, March 2, 2023, from 6:30 am to 9:00 am, Drive-Thru guests who donate will be greeted with hot coffee, treats, and giveaways on their way to pick up their breakfast bags. Some lucky donors may also win one of the many prizes hidden in the bags, including travel vouchers, resort stays, gift cards, and much more.
“One of the local food security initiatives this amazing event will support is our Food Infrastructure Grant program (FIG), a partnership between United Way BC and the Ministry of Health. The FIG helps improve year-round access to essential fresh and culturally appropriate food that enhances community-wide health and well-being,” says Kristi Rintoul, Community Impact & Investment Manager at UWBC. “The program works with rural, remote, and First Nation communities, like the Penticton and Lower Similkameen Indian Bands, to address the specific needs of local communities facing increased food insecurity.”
Lower Similkameen Community Food Hub Farm & Garden
Thanks to the FIG, the Lower Similkameen Community Food Hub Farm & Garden, our newest United Way BC Regional Community Food Hub, has been able to keep and increase its established community garden and community-led food security initiatives such as gathering and preserving traditional foods.
Located on Smalqmix (Similkameen) lands in the South Okanagan, the farm upon which the hub is being developed has existed for over a decade but lacked funding and operational support. Thanks to a partnership with United Way BC, Knowledge Keeper Dixon is leading the hub’s launch, which includes local and community-led food production, harvesting, processing, and preservation.
The hub also creates employment and educational opportunities for local community members and students attending the Lower Similkameen Indian Band School. Another of the hub’s plans is to become a venue to showcase and share Indigenous farming practices.
When supporting this year’s Drive-Thru Breakfast, donors contribute to local United Way initiatives, such as the Food Infrastructure Grant and other local programs. This helps ensure all residents, from Summerland and Penticton to Princeton and Osoyoos, can get the nourishing food they need, building stronger, healthier communities.
Together, we can strengthen vital connections. Please, join us on March 2!