Jenn is passionate about food security and reducing waste. She has been shaking down apples from her parents backyard trees as long as she can remember, and loved turning those imperfect fruits into delicious apple sauce. She got involved with the Vancouver Fruit Tree Project by volunteering making tasty fruit tarts as part of the Tree House Treats project.
She keeps busy working for various non-profit organizations around Vancouver including the Vancouver Farmers Markets, the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival, and Tourism Vancouver. In her spare time, Jenn enjoys festivals, photography, riding bikes, bee-keeping, growing vegetables at City Hall, planning adventures, helping out on her friends farm, and attempting to play the ukulele.
She looks forward to epic blackberry & cherry picks all winter long, and her favourite fruit is blueberries. And figs. And apricots. And…
Hi, I’m Clint, I help out with the website, blog and the newsletter. I found the project when looking for a volunteering opportunity that would be of service to people in my neighbourhood. Stumbling upon a group dedicated to getting quality, but potentially wasted, food to people most in need, and in my own backyard blew me away. I’m very excited to help get fruit to our great community partners.
My profession is computer consulting – I provide technical solutions to businesses in a language the management understands.
In my free time I’m likely to be found walking around Kits beach with my family, bouldering, reading, wrestling with my son, or figuring out the inner workings of the latest technology in my home lab.
Hello, Im Raveen. I am a new board member and I will be involved in managing the finances for VFTP. Both my parents were small farmers in India growing fruits, vegetables, and raising animals for dairy. We always had a small vegetable garden and fruit trees in Canada and from an early age, I was taught the values of growing your own foods, eating local healthy foods, and sharing your garden with your neighborhood.
When I saw the opportunity to volunteer for a great initiative like VFTP, it completely resonated with me. Sharing quality, local food not only reduces waste and helps those in need, but is also a wonderful way to get to know the people around you and educate each other on food security issues.
My background is in business development and I am professional accountant (CPA, CMA). I hope to bring my knowledge and passion to the VFTP team. In my spare time I enjoy boxing, swimming, and cooking various cuisines (especially Indian Vegetarian).
Roxci, born and raised in Vancouver, loves and appreciates what our lovely fertile land has to offer to our communities. Roxci is a Life Skills Counsellor at the Boys and Girls Clubs of South Coast BC and manages the Skills Link Program, a youth employment and life skills program.
Though Roxci has studied business, marketing, volunteer management, and project management she is very passionate about food security and community building. Roxci heard about the Fruit Tree Project in 2012 and immediately reached out to the team to find out how to volunteer and take part. The association between food insecurity and nutrition and health outcomes fascinates Roxci and she is constantly researching the topic to learn more and sharing this knowledge with others. She believes the history of the world stands on the importance of community and is very passionate about the work done at the Vancouver Fruit Tree Project.
In her spare time Roxci also volunteers with Kidstart as a Child Mentor and is an active member with the Green Party, fighting for our environmental and civil rights and freedoms in British Columbia. She loves hiking and being outdoors as well as reading a good book whenever time allows.
Maddie – Member at Large
Maddie has enjoyed a meandering path on her journey through life, work and learning.
Originally having studied Anthropology and Art History at McMaster University, Maddie began her work in the “real world” as an archaeologist carrying out surveys across South Western Ontario.
Wanting to gain a deeper understanding of the injustices of globalization, Maddie spent some time volunteering for a grass roots NGO in Madagascar. She returned with the intention to enact positive change from within her own communities, and moved to Vancouver to study Sustainable Community Development at SFU, and earned her Yoga Teacher Certificate.
Missing outdoor work, Maddie became a landscaper and apprenticed to learn more about horticulture. Today she spends much of her free time studying Permaculture, urban farming, and volunteering with local organizations such as Earth Bites, David Suzuki Foundation, Evergreen and Parks Stewards groups.
Gaining a love and reverence for everything from soil microbes to medicinal plants, Maddie now hopes to help landscaping become a genuinely green industry that assists human health by working with—not against—the biota which sustains us.
Becoming a board member of Vancouver Fruit Tree Project is the first step in a new journey to help make that hope a reality. By communicating VFTP’s intentions and offering its resources, Maddie is hoping that less and less abundance will be trucked off to the dump.
Hi there, I’m Amy! After having volunteered on fruit picks and outreach with the Vancouver Fruit Tree Project, I’m excited to be serving on the board, and contributing to its work that uses local resources, and makes healthy food available to more people.
Food and waste projects have been on my plate for the last few years. Most recently, I worked at Embark, a student sustainability organization at SFU, where I worked on food and community-building projects with volunteers. I have also had the pleasure of volunteering at Quest Food Exchange, where I worked with the food recovery system firsthand, alongside awesome volunteers. This experience inspired my Master of Urban Studies research on food recovery in Vancouver.
I love harvesting local fruit since you get an appreciation for how the fruit grows, and you also get to enjoy the fruit at its freshest – foraging for blackberries in Vancouver is one of my favourite summertime activities. Other passions include swing dancing, cycling, and singing in a choir.
Tyler – Member at Large
The grand-son of a Saskatchewan farmer, Tyler has deep roots in the dirt. From his childhood until today, he’s always been fascinated with his food. He’s interested by the ways that what we eat is an embodiment of our cultures and histories, as well as how it enables people to connect with each other and their communities.
Tyler has lived in Vancouver for two years, and has been involved in several food projects around the city including Discovery Organics, the Alexandra School Garden, the Mount Pleasant Food Network, and CoFood. He’s also an avid fermenter, and spends his free time brewing beer, mixing Miso paste, crafting Kimchi, and souring sauerkraut. He has also worked in web design, communications, and in political organizing.
Tanya – Member at Large
Hi! I’m Tanya, and I love learning about the ways that food affects our bodies and our climate, and how it shapes our communities. In fact, I love it so much that I am currently studying to be a registered dietitian.
As I have begun to learn about the intensely complex relationship we have with food, I have been searching out ways to celebrate the importance of fresh, whole foods in our community. This has led me to being involved as a peer educator and later a project manager with Embark Sustainability, as well as volunteering with BC Agriculture in the Classroom and with the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood House as a nutrition outreach volunteer.
I love the Vancouver Fruit Tree Project because it brings people together to share in the value of delicious, local, fresh fruit. It’s so simple, yet so profoundly important. In my spare time, I am happiest hiking up a mountain or listening my way through a great playlist on a summer road trip. And eating food. Lots and lots of good food.
Silvia – Member at Large
Silvia is passionate about community involvement; whenever possible she contributes by supporting sustainable and green initiatives. With over 8 years working for local government, in a leadership capacity, Silvia is well versed in keeping communities in mind and educating them about being green.
Silvia has always had a passion for food which can be linked back to fond memories of family gatherings and events. She strives to ensure that healthy food options and lifestyle are part of her young family’s daily routine. Silvia further promotes this lifestyle with her international exchange students, from all over the world, having been a host mom for over 10 years.
In an effort to reduce her carbon footprint Silvia likes to support local farms as much as possible; knowing that average fruit may travel between 1,500 and 4,000 kilometers before it arrives in her community is a large motivation for her to shop local. By supporting local farms and products, this means less petroleum products; it also means reduced carbon emissions as compared with locally grown produce. Most importantly it means her family enjoys fresher, riper, more flavourful fruits and vegetables by supporting local farmers and shopping local. Another fun piece that Silvia is involved in is food sharing; by creating a food swap group, she is able to share produce grown in her own garden with friends and family as well as enjoy produce from their gardens.
Silvia’s love for supporting sustainable choices stretches beyond food. Silvia also volunteers with NOBARS (No Borders Animal Rescue) a non-profit organization, whose volunteers are dedicated to providing rescue to stray, abandoned, abused, or surrendered animals, to prevent cruelty, to re-home and promote the welfare of animals.
In her spare time, Silvia keeps active by being out on the field playing soccer, hitting the bags at her kickboxing gym and chasing after her 2 little ones. To unwind she enjoys having a glass of wine and painting canvases.
Hello, I’m Shannon – I was the Vancouver Fruit Tree Project’s 2013 Seasonal Coordinator and I am very excited to join the board. I came to the Vancouver Fruit Tree Project through my passion for community based food security initiatives. Initially, I began studying sustainable food systems in Bolivia, a country where food sovereignty has been constitutionalized. However, while overseas, I became aware of the incredible projects taking place here at home, and I returned knowing I had to get involved. I love The Vancouver Fruit Tree Project because it connects all of the components of a resilient local food system: it engages community members directly in the food security process, equitably redistributes local organic food, and minimizes unnecessary food waste.
I spend my days at the UBC Farm, where I split my time between communications and project management. I completed my MA in International Studies, with a focus on food security, from Simon Fraser University in 2013, and it feels great to be working actively in my field.
In my free time I am a farmer at Sea Tilth Farm in Richmond.
Hi, my name is Caro and I was the Coordinator for the 2014 season. I am super excited to be involved! Since moving to Canada 6 years ago I have become increasingly interested in where our food comes from, how it is produced and the sustainability of our food system.
Knowing I had to get involved, I started and have just completed a Masters in food policy. While doing this I volunteered for 2 months on an organic farm in Ontario, growing up in London, farming and knowledge of how food was grown were not a huge part of my childhood! It was a fantastic experience and I realised that community engagement and education around food and nutrition is incredibly important and that there were some amazing initiatives taking place here in Vancouver that I wanted to be part of.
In my free time you will find me cooking, cycling, hiking, boxing, curled up with a really good book or planning a major travelling adventure to see new parts of the world.
Hi I’m Nadine, and 2013 is my first year as a volunteer and board member with the Vancouver Fruit Tree Project. My love for plants and the environment began in childhood, from my mother’s vegetable garden, to bike rides and walks through local forests with family and friends, and later summer jobs working at greenhouses and field-stations. This led to my Masters in Science, where I specialized in botany, environmental science, and biochemistry. From there I obtained my Bachelors of Education with the goal of engaging the public in alternative learning spaces. This has since included the following roles: Education and Outreach Manager at UBC Botanical Garden; Science and Technology Museum Consultant; Research Greenhouse Supervisor with the UBC Faculty of Land and Food Systems, TVOntario Environmental Education and Outreach Intern.
Food systems and security are an extension of my interest in plants and the environment, so a friend invited me on two Vancouver Fruit Tree picks. We harvested apples and heaps of grapes, gave some to the home-owners and ourselves, and the bulk to a social service supporting those in need… What a fantastic idea and a great way to give-back, I wanted to be more involved so I applied for a board position. I’m excited to be part of this and to work with everybody! When I’m not busy with work or volunteering, you can find me cycling, hiking, or gardening.
Richard is a passionate horticulturist who has been teaching and advising gardeners and farmers across British Columbia for more than 35 years. He grew up on an orchard in the Okanagan Valley where he started pruning and grafting as a teenager. For most of his career he has been a technical advisor to the commercial tree fruit, Christmas tree and Agroforestry industries in BC. Two years ago he started a new business to train and mentor gardeners and farmers in the art and science of directing the growth of trees for fun, aesthetics and food production. He is a Horticultural Advisor to the Vancouver Tree Fruit Project, Historic Fort Langley, Historic Stewart Orchard and several other organizations in the Vancouver-Fraser Valley area. He is a Registered Professional Horticulturist, a Certified Arborist and a Master Gardener.