Community Food Security

Community Food Action Initiative

The Community Food Action Initiative (CFAI) is a health promotion initiative that aims to increase community food security for all British Columbians. The primary objectives of the CFAI are to increase awareness of food security, improve access to local and healthy food, promote food knowledge and skills, increase community capacity to address local food security, and develop policy to support community food security. With funding from The Ministry of Healthy Living and Sport, implementation by the five Regional Health Authorities, provincial coordination by Provincial Health Services Authority and guidance from a multi-sector, provincial advisory committee – CFAI supports actions that build food security in BC communities.

Island Health has supported community food security through Food Security Hubs and the following activities:

Community Food Atlas

The community food atlas is currently under redevelopment.

The Community Food Atlas is a joint initiative of Island Health, the Public Health Association of BC and the University of Victoria. In addition to being an interactive, visual platform for community food security programs, it is a “live” directory that can be updated by participating organizations at any time. The atlas provides current information about programs and services available to the public such as: 

  • community gardens
  • gardening workshops
  • gleaning programs
  • farmers markets
  • meal programs, meal-bags, & snacks
  • food banks & food cupboards 
  • good food boxes
  • food vouchers
  • nutrition workshops
  • cooking classes
  • community kitchens

The Food Atlas relies on community organizations to enter their own program information and to keep the atlas up to date – the more groups that participate, the more successful the atlas will be as a community tool for improving food access and food security awareness in the Island Health Region.

Community Food Security Events

From time to time Island Health hosts conferences and networking events related to food security. These events offer representatives working on food security and in various aspects of the food system to network and share their knowledge of and experience. Representatives from the community food security Hubs partner and collaborate on the planning of these events.