Community-University engagement in building a resilient regional local food system

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On February 28th, 2013,  representatives of the North Superior Workforce Planning Board (NSWPB) and the Food Security Research Network (FSRN) at Lakehead University shared the story of how the relationship between the organizations developed and evolved. Through a shared vision of a local food system, these organizations have been working together to conduct research that helps to move the local food agenda forward. 

The presenters focused on four key lessons of this " in-community" perspective on Community-University engagement:

  1. Relationship formation around shared interests,
  2. The weaving together of networks,
  3. Project self-organization,
  4. “Co-evolution” through mutual influence

The four presenters:

Madge Richardson is the Executive Director of North Superior Workforce Planning Board (NSWPB).  Madge has been a strong advocate for small communities in Northwestern Ontario and was involved in Schreiber’s Economic Development Committee for 3 years prior to running for Council in 2003.  She served one term as Councillor and in 2006 successfully ran for Mayoral position to become Schreiber’s first female mayor in its 125 history. 

Mirella Stroink is a Community and Environmental Psychology Professor with the Food Security Research Network at Lakehead University. Her work links research, education, and community development toward a vision of community resilience.

Steven Bill is the Project & Research Manager with North Superior Workforce Planning Board. He holds a Masters in International and Intercultural Communications and a Bachelors in Theology. Steven is married to Rhonda, owner of A Fine Fit Catering – a catering company featuring local and healthy food options in her menu.  

Connie Nelson is a professor of social work and director of the Food Security Research Network (FSRN). Dr. Nelson strives to unite university and community members in the pursuit of service, research, and socio-economic development dedicated to strengthening local food systems.  She is a specialist in community capacity building, regional food system development and community service learning.

Webinar date: 
Thursday, February 28, 2013 - 6:00pm