Community Partners

FoodShare Annual General Meeting

Food share is a 32-year old not for profit organization that is vocal and active on issues of food security, access to healthy food and urban agriculture. They held their annual general meeting (AGM) at their warehouse on 120 Industry St. They welcomed members of the community at 3:30pm with plant giveaways. Several types of tomatoe plants and some herbs and kale were available for free to those who wish to grow them in a personal or community garden.

They then organized personalized tours of the building to members of the community who are unfamiliar with their work. They have a kitchen that caters healthy meals to schools, senior homes and community events; as the visitors strolled past, the kitchen was very busy preparing food for the dinner after the AGM. The facility also includes walk-in fridges and and a warehouse where Good Food Baskets are packed full of fresh produce by staff, then delivered to pick-up spots across Toronto and the GTA; the pick-up spots are managed by local volunteers. To find out more or to order your own food basket for as little as $13 visit their website at foodshare.net.

At 5:00pm the meeting was called to order, some motions were passed and recognition was made to all those who contribute. Speakers listed some of the achievements of the past year.

FoodShare by the numbers
Some of the numbers that were mentioned by speakers
After the meeting was adjourned and right before the dinner, the new executive director Paul Taylor gave an inspiring speech in which he addressed the dire need to eradicate hunger in Canada. He also spoke about his past experiences including running a youth homeless shelter in Toronto and work he did with a disatvantaged community in B.C. He also spoke on a personal level about his upbringing as a black boy raised by a strong single mother who instilled confidence in him and expected the best out of him; and presented himself as a role model for young black kids.

Speakers also invited everyone to donate to, buy from, and share the story of the  Sunshine Garden; a therapeutic garden in which clients of CAMH who are struggling with addiction and mental health issues work and volunteer. The Sunshine Garden is a long-time FoodShare program run in partnership with CAMH. 

After 6:00pm dinner was served to all those who attended.

Uncategorized

3rd Clean-Up good turn out despite the rain

A big thank you to the 10 individuals who helped out today, braving the rain to participate in this litter pick-up effort, including a family of 4. Sadly we didn’t remember to take a group photo.

We cleaned along Dora Spencer Rd. and then a smaller group broke out to clean Portage Gardens Park. Though we filled about 30 bags worth of litter (a majority of which are recyclables) much more work remaind to be done on the ravine edge of Portage Gardens Park.

We invite community members to reach out to MDCA if they need help organizing further clean-up dates on the Portage Gardens Park ravine edge. And once again we like to thank all those helping to beauify Mount Dennis.

Eco Neighbourhood, Feature

Eco-Neighbourhood in Mount Dennis

In March 2017 the Mount Dennis community has scored a major victory when Metrolinx officially scrapped plans to build a gas powered generating plant, and instead agreed to co-operate with Toronto Hydro to build a state of the art back-up battery. This triggered a wave of optimism among community members and subsequently attracted media coverage especially after the Mount Dennis Community Association held an Eco-Neighbourhood open house at the Mount Dennis Public Library.

But this is only the latest of a very dedicated and long-term effort by residents and community groups who in the past few years laid out a Vision and Action outline for community discussion to address issues of livability, public health, and climate action. We hope that the gains we made so far are a first step towards a transformative journey for Mount Dennis that will become an even greener, more walkable, more livable, and more attractive place to work, play and live than it already is. And why not, a net zero emissions community as well.

Please reach out to us with ideas and concerns going forward at EcoNeighbourhood@MountDennis.ca

Eco Neighbourhood, Media Coverage

Eco-Neighbourhood on CBC-RadioCanada

This is a french interview on CBC Radio Canada, hosted by Line Boily and her program Heure De Pointe with Mount Dennis Community Association member Johnny Dib discussing the Eco-Neighbourhood vision of Mount Dennis. These are the highlights from the interview:

The host said it’s easier to stop a polluting power plant than to change lifestyle choices. Johnny agreed but reminded the listeners that the emissions-free battery was not an obvious outcome and took months of active pressure. The MDCA is optimistic about the future and is confident that with support from local residents and businesses we can achieve our Eco-Neighbourhood vision.

Community Partners, Eco Neighbourhood

Reading Garden at Mount Dennis Public Library

Residents of Mount Dennis have teamed up with the Mount Dennis Public Library to apply for the City of Toronto’s Partnership Opportunity Legacy Fund in efforts to improve the library’s reading garden and engage community members. Chiara Padovani (resident), Jean-Marie Boutot (resident) and Nora Lay (Mount Dennis librarian) were at the Eco Neighbourhood Open House to present a brief overview of the project. Complete with a vertical garden, solar-panel operated ventilation and a rainwater collection system, the vision for the garden was beautifully portrayed in local resident and George Brown Architectural Technology student, Rachel Carter’s concept drawing. The team is trying to engage as many residents as possible before submitting the application (due April 21st), and invited community members to fill out a survey available online here. If you’re interested in getting further involved in the project, please contact eco@mountdennis.ca!

Activities, Eco Neighbourhood

Eco-Neighbourhood Open House

In a packed room at the Mount Dennis Public Library, the Mount Dennis Community Association invited the community to celebrate recent environmental wins and to discuss further what is needed to pursue the Eco-Neighbourhood vision.

Speakers included:

  • Rick Ciccarelli and Mike Matos spoke on behalf of the Mount Dennis Community Association
  • Local residents and library staff spoke about the reading garden in the library
  • Elected officials congratulated the community for their recent wins
  • City officials who presented the Transform TO climate action plan
  • A TRCA official spoke about the potential for SNAP program in Mount Dennis
  • Metrolinx spokesperson who recognized the community and shared some info on the Eglinton Crosstown as well as the upcoming RER line.

After the presentation, the residents made comments and asked questions and the conversation continued past the event’s end time.

The York Guardian newspaper covered the event and wrote this about it:

The association held its EcoNeighbourhood open house Monday, April 3, which was attended by approximately 60 people. At least 40 of those were residents, the rest were politicians, partners, etc.

“The 40 people in the room came because they wanted to. We had people who heard about this on CBC radio’s Metro Morning and wanted to see what it’s all about, people from other parts of the city,” association president Mike Mattos said.

He said the response has been positive. The local initiative could even work as a case study for future projects across Toronto and beyond, Mattos said.

The project requires partners, such as Metrolinx, which recently announced it would build a battery backup energy system in Mount Dennis for the Crosstown LRT. It includes the City of Toronto, which aims to make Mount Dennis Toronto’s first Net Zero community. It includes Toronto and Region Conservation and the TO EcoNeighbourhoods Initiative to invest their resources and contacts for local projects. And it requires local buy-in.