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An educational

urban farm & garden project

The World In A Garden educates community and youth about the nutritional, cultural and environmental aspects of growing and eating food.
Sep 132013
 

Experiencing Nutrition at The World In A Gardens Summer Camp for Kids

Here’s an article written by our founder, Tricia Sedgwick,about how food growing makes us “healthy by default”

As a nutritionist my relationship to food continually evolves. Over time, as I work with the land, visit farmers, grow food with children and prepare fresh meals from the garden, my connection to the land and the source of food deepens.

Admittedly the world of nutrition and food science has been known to entice me. I can find myself excited about words such as “bio-availability” and “enzyme inhibitors” and I like knowing what foods are high in trace minerals and which are alkalizing. Intuitively though, I have always felt that there is more to food then the science behind it.

It was early on in my path as a nutritionist that I noticed that telling children and people to eat green food and all things healthy was not the most effective. Yes, I was passionate about health food, about all things sprouted and fermented, but how could I get others to feel the same sense of loyalty to it?

That was when I started growing food with people. I let the growing process of food help others be inspired through the miracle of a sprouting seed and the creative process that brings food to their plate.

It is through the growing process that I have seen people get excited about fresh foods and make the shift towards a healthier lifestyle. In fact, it seems that regardless of age people are proud to eat what they grow, they prove curious about how it tastes and they learn to appreciate the fresh new flavors of the seasons.

My experience with food gardening has shown me that people are getting healthy by default. It makes sense that when we eat fresh plucked kale that the benefit of adequate calcium intake is just a natural consequence.

My research on food and traditions has also proved that for centuries people across cultures have had an intuitive connection with their food. The Mayans knew, for example, to add lime to the corn and when lime is added the vitamin B6 comes available for cellular absorption. In India, Africa and across Asia, grains and legumes were fermented, increasing the nutrient profile and absorbability of the food. These people were also connected to the process that brought food to their mouths.

The intimate process of working with people, the land and soil to produce highly nutritious food has children telling me that they love kale and parents reporting with excitement that they make kale smoothies – daily! It tells me something is going right.

When I looked up the definition of nutrition this is what I found: The process of nourishing or being nourished, especially the process by which a living organism assimilates food and uses it for growth and for replacement of tissues.

Hmmm… How interesting it is that our process has become so disconnected. How has our “process” become one where most of us drive to a grocery store to buy processed, boxed and packaged foods? Where we may or may not read labels to decide if it is healthy or not. And how has it become where we don’t even consider where the food originated, how it was grown or the process that got our food to store shelves,?

It seems strange to me that our process has become one where foods are mass – produced through mono-crop farming and chemically and mechanically intensified methods of growing “fresh” food that may just be genetically engineered. It’s perplexing that this same food is shipped to processing plants where food is often altered from its original state with the goal to have a long shelf life. Most of these edible products are then shipped a few thousand miles away to an assortment of grocery stores.

Often when I harvest from my garden to eat I am amazed at how such a simple thing like food has become so complex.

If nutrition is the process of being nourished, doesn’t it make sense to be a part of that process, to understand that intimate process of creating real food? Maybe we won’t all start growing 100% of our own food but we can get more involved in the process.

Whether we talk to the farmers at the market or we grow our own herbs and make conscious decisions about where our food is coming from, it’s a step in a more ethical and nutritious direction.

My process of nourishing my own body has not always looked this way;  where I grow food year round, support local farmers, teach about nutrition gardens and support businesses like Urban Diggs. Rather nutrition has evolved into an “experience” for me, an experience that connects me to my community and nourishes my spirit as much as it nourishes my body.

I think the definition of nutrition - The process of nourishing or being nourished, especially the process by which a living organism assimilates food and uses it for growth and for replacement of tissues – invites a good question to ask ourselves, such as,   “What is my own process of being nourished”?

Tricia Sedgwick is a Holistic Nutritionist and the founder of The World In A Garden, an educational urban farm & garden project. She is currently working with local schools to integrate urban food gardens and nutrition education and focused on food and water conservation with The Rain Barrel Project –  www.theworldinagarden.com

 

 

 

Oct 182012
 

Art, music, dance and food…what more could you ask for?

This year our harvest celebration is taking on a twist. In the past year, hundreds of youth from around Vancouver have come together to participate in citizenU, a city-funded program that addresses bullying, discrimination and racism. As an organization that celebrates multiculturalism, we, at The World in a Garden, got involved in citizenU as a host organization, providing training to a group of youth from David Thompson Secondary School. They are just a few of the group of citizenU youth that have spent the past few months organizing an event that will address issues of discrimination through dance, food, garden activities and art. Now, after undergoing anti-discrimination training and participating in city-wide events that celebrate diversity, this group is putting on what’s shaping up to be a fun-filled event: The Big One!

So join us this Saturday, October 20th, from 12-5pm, for a free event for people of all ages and all walks of life. The Big One will be held at our garden on W. 57th & East Blvd., and in St. Faith’s Church, just one street over on Cypress.

What’s going on at The Big One?

  • Hip Hop & Salsa Dance Workshops
  • Garden BINGO / Scavenger Hunts for Kids
  • Mural Art
  • Delicious food from Loving Hut
  • Raffles
  • Tie-dye at 1pm & 2pm ($10 includes Passport to Permaculture t-shirt)
  • Garden Gate Sale – with fresh produce straight from our garden!
  • …and more!

Follow on Twitter @TheBig1CitizenU

You’re Invited! Join the Facebook Event.

May 162012
 

Tyee students sell sprouts, local eggs and carrots at today’s pocket market to fund their school’s garden!

Back in school and I’m reminded that youth leadership is the driving force behind many successful social and environmental movements today.

Today I’m writing from Tyee Elementary, where students are leading a pocket market sale for their parents and teachers. This is part of a garden education program that we are partnering on with Rocky Mountain Flatbread Company. Students learn about the importance of our local food system and work together to create products for the market sale. Proceeds fund Tyee’s garden, which is underway with raised beds in their schoolyard.

Kids ages 7 to 12 lined the market tables today, beaming with smiles and proudly selling their products to parents and teachers, all the while becoming young social entrepreneurs in a movement towards a more local food system. What’s on sale today? Food in a jar, mason bee hives, potato kits, seed bombs, seed sprout kits and more!

We are facilitating leadership training in anti-discrimination and anti-racism for citizenU, a city-funded program. Our crew enjoyed the sun this weekend during training!

These students have demonstrated that you can never be too young to make positive change, or even lead a movement! All over the country, youth are turning their passion for local food into action, working with their communities to create more localized food systems. This isn’t just a movement; it’s a way of life!

I am sincerely inspired whenever I hear about a new initiative or read about a fellow young urban farmer in the newspaper. Emi Do (Yummy Yards), an urban farmer about my age, was recently featured in a front page article in the Vancouver Sun describing a push towards policy changes favorable to urban agriculture. Just yesterday, I stumbled upon an article about two young Americans filming a documentary about urban farms across the United States. And today, just a few minutes ago, I received a notice from an Environmental Youth Alliance coordinator regarding a group of teenage youth (GrassRoutes) who are cycling across Canada over the summer to empower thousands of youth about environmental leadership.

And The World In A Garden? Among other things, we’re partnering with citizenU, a city-funded program that provides high school aged youth with leadership training in anti-discrimination and anti-racism so that we can celebrate diversity and build more resilient communities in this beautiful city!

All across the world, the local food movement has taken root. Its popularity AND success are on the rise. Farm to Cafeteria programs in schools, youth-run gardens, young urban farmers, social entrepreneurs in the making, young filmmakers and more! So can young people change the world? You bet they can- they already are!

Jul 062011
 

If you want to:

A. spend more time in the sun

B. learn more about urban agriculture

C. have more fun; or

D. all of the above

…then you should join us this summer at The World In A Garden! Why be a part of TWIAG? We offer rewarding experiences for people from all walks of life so that we can build community, grow multicultural awareness, and educate Vancouverites to make healthy & environmentally sound decisions. We believe that it is your small and valuable decisions that will make life in Vancouver & the world more sustainable!

Summer has brought lots of exciting events (new and returning) and volunteer opportunities to our garden, and we’d like to share some of those with you…

  • Passport to Permaculture: A Kids Camp (NEW)

Following the ethics of permaculture- care of the earth, care of all people and fair share- kids will explore the different aspects of urban agriculture- nutrition, local food, biodiversity and ethical business. Participants receive stamps in their “Passport to Permaculture” as they complete activities representing the 12 principles of permaculture. The camp features knowledgeable & engaging guest speakers, arts & crafts, hands-on activities, a field trip to Rocky Mountain Flatbread Company and a camper-run garden gate sale! Click on the “workshops & camps” tab for more information.

  • Seed to Table Workshop Series

We are very excited about our workshop series this summer! It includes interesting topics & knowledgeable guest speakers from our area who are committed to growing local, minimizing footprints and building a more sustainable community.

Coming up: Arts & Seed Starts (A Kids Workshop) & Backyard Chickensboth on JULY 20- double the fun!

  • Markets

This summer, TWIAG is happy to be part of three wonderful markets: Oak St. Farmer’s Market & Westside Pocket Market & Southlands Market. Check them out on our “where to find us” page. And remember to buy local :)

  • Native Edible Garden

In honor of First Nations culture and heritage, we are planting a native edible garden along the boulevard south of our garden. The garden will be blessed by Squamish Nation Minister, Eugene Harry, and planted with the help of Linaea Nurseries and the community that has supported us since our beginnings.

Jun 022011
 

Get Hungry for Change with The World in a Garden

Join The World In A Garden, Jewish Film Festival &  JFSA for the “Hungry $4 Change Challenge”
Can you eat healthy, nutritious food on $4/day? From June 8 – 11th we invite you to take the “Hungry $4 Change Challenge”

Did you know that over 700,000 Canadians live on a $4/day food budget?

We challenge you to live the Food Stamped film and eat within the $4/day food budget for four days. Join other challengers by posting your meal ideas and experiences on our Facebook page leading up to the June 12th film screening of Food Stamped. 

For more information about joining the “Hungry $4 Change Challenge” or to be entered in our draw to win a Vij’s cookbook or a workshop from The World In A Garden’s Seed to Table workshop series email tsedgwick@jfsa.ca

Please note that all winners will be announced at the film screening and must be present to claim their prize.

May 042011
 

There’s nothing Mom likes more than a beautiful flowers she can enjoy all summer! On Saturday, May 7th, our friends at Choices Market in Kerrisdale will be holding a hanging basket sale, and all proceeds will go to The World In A Garden!

Choices Market shares our vision for a healthy & organic Vancouver and they’ve been with us since our beginnings. Choices supports the garden by providing yummy food for workshops, hosting fundraisers, sponsoring events, and much more! Shared values and ethical business drive this wonderful partnership as we work together  to provide fresh & nutritious food to the Vancouver community.

Click on the poster below for more details!

Apr 072011
 

We are pumped for The World In A Garden’s first community volunteer day of the year, Spring Starter! And YOU are invited :)

When: Sunday, April 10, 11am-3pm

Where: W. 57th & East Blvd., Across from Choices

RSVP to: Alicia abaddorf@udel.edu or 604.257.5151 ext. 213

WHY should I be there?

1. Special PRIZE draw! Who doesn’t like free stuff? All you have to do is show up to volunteer and you’re automatically eligible to win a free gift basket from Seeds of Plenty, an organic sprouted cookie company & more!

There’s more! If you become a fan of our Facebook page, and come to to volunteer, you are eligible to win a free Potato Fusion kit!

2. Okay, if you don’t win, you can still purchase a Potato Fusion kit for $15! Sunday is our last potato kit sale day,  so don’t wait till next year…

3. Hang out with your neighbors and friends in the warm April sunshine! The garden is the perfect place to meet new (awesome) people, make new friends and spend some quality time outdoors with your family & friends.

4. See what’s growin’ on up at the garden…kale, garlic, tulips…just to name a few. Come and see for yourself!

5. Join us on a garden tour. We’ll show you what the garden has to offer, and talk about the exciting new projects we have in store for summer!

6. Free snacks & coffee! Really no need to justify this one…

7. Education…we get to teach you about the importance of the local food system we have going on & you can offer us suggestions  as well! We can help each other learn and grow as a community.

8. Be a part of the dramatic transformation of the garden. There is ALWAYS work to be done. You make our project possible & when you take part, you get to see your hard work manifested.

9. Help us help the environment! You can make a difference just by putting in a few hours of your time. You’re helping us make Vancouver the Greenest City :)

10. Get involved in our unique project and your community. Volunteers are absolutely critical to the success of TWIAG. We appreciate your help more than anything !

We look forward to seeing you there!

Jan 122011
 

Special Thanks to Inspire Canada and Maximizer Software for their help with the garden!

Last Friday, the corporate team from Maximizer Software joined us at the garden to help tidy up in the midst of this cold winter. After days of rain, the sun gods blessed us with a beautiful day for working outdoors!

Michael Samson of Inspire Canada brought us the energetic team from Maximizer to clean up the garden and do some team building exercises. Tricia started things off with a brief tour of the garden and an explanation of the project. The volunteers then dove into the clean up work, which involved everything from pulling out the dead sunflowers to harvesting the beautiful carrots that survived the winter!

Michael then led the crew in a team building exercise, in which three different groups developed and performed original skits promoting The World in A Garden. As the judges, we had the task of deciding which one to post on the website. Along with having their efforts posted on the blog, the winning team received a wonderful gift basket from Seeds of Plenty. We will have the winning video up soon!

The crew got back to work again and finished clearing out the weeds from the garden. All of their hard work led to this incredible transformation.

We ended the day with a final session of team building in which we discussed our New Year’s resolutions and what we can do to follow through with them.

It was a beautiful day and truly rewarding to see everyone come together to support The World In A Garden project. Everyone enjoyed a break from the office to spend sometime outdoors contributing to the garden. What a fabulous job this small group did to improve the garden in a big way! The Maximizer team is much appreciated for coming out to lend a hand, as is Michael for bringing the team to us through Inspire Canada.

Oct 282009
 

The idea of The World in a Garden was seeded with a small thought that I (Tricia Sedgwick) had while travelling in Central America, 10 years ago, where I observed the cultural and environmental consequences of unsustainable development fueled by American influence. I would see compilations of imported plastic wrappers, bottles, bags and containers washed up on otherwise beautiful shores as well as scattered throughout the streets. As a young student I thought, what right do we have to sell them wasteful commercial products when they don’t have the infrastructure to rid of it? Forget about recycling – general waste removal is not an option for the majority of locals without the financial or educational resources to deal with the waste. The garbage generated is burned, thrown in rivers or scattered in the streets, which made me ask: Is the answer to malaria and water born disease really about pharmaceuticals or are we avoiding the work that would come with looking at the root cause, such as cleaning up contaminated and stagnant water sources? Clearly we are running from the responsibility of a mess we helped create or at least worsen.

As time went on, I became more discouraged about what I was observing and exceedingly disgusted with my excessive lifestyle back home, unconsciously focused on “more”, and material consumption. Perhaps, one of my most memorable epiphanies of my travels was trading in my $100 uncomfortable, name brand sandals to buy a pair of $1 flip flops that I wore day in and day out for 3 months, regardless of the outfit (I think my mom still has those flip flops).

Returning home, to beautiful Vancouver, from my 3 month tour was somewhat overwhelming, the trendy coffee shops looked so elaborate and my shoe collection…how did I find the time to wear all those shoes? And how did I manage for 3 months with only one large back pack when I had a large overfilled closet of clothes calling my name? I had lived simply for 3 months, with concrete floors, room temperature showers, no TV, no lattes and I was happy, rather joyful, actually.

My resentment for the western society in which I was born into and live in remained throughout my university studies until I discovered a place of harmony, where conscious consumerism exists. It is a harmony that stems from understanding that creating change with the tools and assets available in the western world is a valuable gift.

We can share our resources, our knowledge and we can help developing countries do it better then we have as we honor their heritage and their right to abundance and sustainable development. My western reality offers philanthropy based business models that utilizes money as an investment to empower others to build on who they are as a people and as individuals.

Alternatively, I found through my travels to Africa and Central America that the local people offer me a richness unrelated to money, a richness of culture, tradition and community. They offer me roots. These roots are the result of tradition, and they keep us grounded.

This idea, to work with communities on a cultural level, that honors where we come from and who we are, individually and as a whole, became my quest. I wanted to start a project that could bring it all together, without being the “westernized hypocrite” who advises the locals of developing countries and communities not to do what we have done all long. The solution is one that celebrates the earth while fostering the expansion of communities through sustainable business models that are built on who we are as human beings. And who we are depends on the existence of clean air, food and water.

I strongly believe and experience that we can build from the principle of sufficiency rather than the outdated and overrated model of consumption, the one that has brought us to the current place of economic and environmental crisis. It’s my vision to help the communities of developing countries to grow ethically, in alignment with and respect to mother earth.

And so, as a result of my travels, a new seed was planted and I started to brainstorm. I started asking what I was passionate about and how could I build a business based on who I was as an individual while utilizing the resources of my community? As a nutritionist and a lover of food, earth and community I came up with the concept of The World in a Garden. A garden that nourishes us on all levels, inviting culture, community, prosperity and food all into one space. As the garden grows, so do I and the intention is for all involved, including mother earth, to grow (sustainably) as well.

Children of Nicaragua

Playing in the Fishing Boat - Ometepe Island