Monday, May 2, 2011

Volunteer Entry: Talia Starts at Quest

We're excited to welcome our newest office volunteer, Talia, to the Quest team. Talia has quite a bit of experience with food security and will contribute her knowledge to our fundraising and outreach efforts.

My name is Talia and I recently started volunteering with Quest Food Exchange. As a newcomer to Vancouver, I was very excited to find an organization that was so passionate about ensuring that all people, regardless of income, were able to access fresh and healthy food at an affordable cost. My previous work in Ontario focused largely on issues of food security and I am so pleased to be able to continue with this work in a new city.

In my previous job, I worked for a local poverty reduction strategy which attempts to ensure the social and economic well-being for all residents in the area. Most of the concerns I heard from local residents had to do with access to affordable food. Many of them utilized services like food banks, and were frustrated with the lack of choice and limited amount of nutrition in the items they found there.

Out of the important concerns, residents began to bring forward innovative ideas to address many of the food security issues faced by those with lived experience of poverty. Some residents advocated for more community gardens, while others pushed for increased access to local farmer's markets for people living on a low income. Many of the people we worked with strongly advocated for a $100 healthy food supplement for those in receipt of social assistance. These extra funds would allow for increased access to fresh fruits, vegetables, and protein. The ability to purchase nutritious items and live a healthier lifestyle is a critical step in ensuring the well-being of citizens.

Coming to a new city, I was thrilled to see that the passion for food security issues extends clear across the country. I am so excited to have the opportunity to share some of my experiences and volunteer with an organization like Quest.

Thanks Talia! We look forward to collaborating with you. Keep an eye out for more posts from Talia in the future.

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