Group 14: Delta Farmland & Wildlife Trust

Hedgerow Stewardship Program

This group worked with local farmers and conducted literary research to determine the effects of hedgerows on the pest population in Delta farms. They met with their community partner and refined their research topic to evaluate the influence of hedgerows on potential predators of the pests, the pests themselves, and the role of the hedgerows themselves. They did extensive literary research connecting different pests and predators with specific native trees used in the hedgerow stewardship program by the Delta Farmland & Wildlife Trust. A few members were even able to get out there and plant some hedgerows with their community partner! It was a really fun experience that they enjoyed but one that showed them just how difficult planting trees was. The group had a great dynamic and they enjoyed working with one another.  They were able to conduct telephone interviews with a few farmers to get some information on the hedgerows and their opinions of their roles on pest management. They described the interviews as very interesting and fun! The farmers seemed eager to share their knowledge and talk to them about everything. They even have plans to have tea with one of them so that they can go over the results of their report together!

Group 25: University Hill Elementary School

This group determined a suitable site for a school garden at university hill in order to help them apply for a grant. They were able to work with a few of the kids and do an art project with them so that they could see what the kids thought a garden was like. They really enjoyed working with the kids and communicating with the Vancouver school boards dietician. They had a few bumps along the road and weren’t sure what they were supposed to do but once they figured it out it all fell into place! Their group is very large and so they had many issues trying to coordinate, but in the end they got the job done.

Group 12: Farm Folk City Folk

This group was on a mission to unveil the mystery of who exactly the seed saving community is. They wanted to see who was attending the BC seeds gathering conference at Kwantlen and determine just how much knowledge they had, how long they had been saving seeds for, and what they planned on doing with all that information!
They completed their community service learning by volunteering at the conference. During the lunch break they were able to gather the information they needed. They made a questionnaire and determined all of the participants were from BC and that there was no correlation between the size of seed saving operations and years of experience.
The group worked well by bouncing off ideas from one another and divided up section of the work.

Group 15: Compost Tea

Root Down Organic Farm

This group’s aim is to determine if compost tea is a viable option for use at Root Down Organic Farm. Additionally, they want to provide guidelines for future research projects by suggesting recipes for compost tea that Root Down can try. They did extensive literary research on compost tea and even sampled some tea! No, they didn’t drink it – they had it analyzed for bacterial populations.
They spent an entire day at Root Down Organic Farm where they learned about the problems the farm was facing, and had the opportunity to shovel sand into bags to help weigh down sheets and protect the farm’s precious organic crops.
One of their group members was already well versed with what compost tea was, so they eventually believed him when he told them it was not the kind of tea you enjoy on a cold rainy day. They had a conflict free semester and are looking forward to finishing their report!

Group 20 – Pasture Management

Gambier Island Sea Ranch

This group’s goal was to determine a sustainable pasture management plan for the Gambier Island Sea Ranch. In order to evaluate the pasture management, they travelled to Gambier Island. Their journey was one filled with travel and beauty.
They got up early on a Saturday morning to catch a chartered ferry to meet their community partner. When they made it to the island they were struck by its beauty. Their community partner came out to greet them with a herd of dogs, they were all very friendly. They were warmly welcomed into their community partner’s home and treated to tea and muffins. The group got to see salmon running up stream, seals eating the salmon in the bay, and an eagle soaring above. It was nothing short of a whimsical day.
The group took soil samples, built chicken nesting boxes and flaps and had the opportunity to be exposed to a wide variety of kind, accomplished, individuals with diverse careers. By getting out there and interacting with their community partner they were able to get the necessary background information needed to do literary research. This information was focused on how to improve the soil quality in order to enhance the forage grown for the animals to feed on. Their feedback will enable their community partner to increase the efficiency and sustainability of their ranch.

University Hill Elementary

Group 25

Project Goal:
To determine the pros and cons of an edible garden program at University Hill Elementary by evaluating various sites at the school that could serve as a potential space for the garden. Their research will be used by school coordinators to apply for a grant.

The Journey:
This group started off confused due to a number of communication mishaps, they thought they were doing one thing, but they were actually doing something completely different, and no one was really quite sure what that was. Eventually they got in touch with the Vancouver School Board’s dietician who led them on the path to establishing their research question. They worked with grades 1,3,5 and 6. They got the kids to sample different foods that could potentially be grown in the gardens and did an art project with them where they created their idea of what a garden should look like.

Group Dynamic:
This group is very large and they’ve had their share of communication issues. The biggest one has been trying to get everyone together to work out the project details, but they have figured it out and are well on their way to completing their project!


Village Vancouver Transition Society

Group 10

Project Goal:

Identifying the existing food assets in the Marpole community by looking at food related organizations in the community. They aim to create connections, list the food assets and map them for their community partner. They want to start a food network by connecting Village Vancouver to the Marpole food community to allow for Village Vancouver to make the food assests more resilient and provide aid.

The Journey:

Group 10 has had many ups and downs. They started out working with Village Vancouver however their research project didn’t initially have any research involved in it and was therefore rejected after they presented their CBEL proposal. The group really liked their original project and was disappointed when it fell apart however they began working with Eduardo instead. The transition was a difficult one. Fate stepped in and reintroduced their community partner into their lives when a few group members ran into him at the Vancouver Food Policy meeting. He wasn’t aware that they weren’t going to be working with him anymore so the group members felt extremely awkward and were furiously whispering to each other during the meeting trying to figure out if they should just quietly leave. Eventually they made contact with him and informed him that their original project was about to be sacked because it lacked a research aspect. They were able to work out a new project with him after discussing things for half an hour and were back on track to working with Village Vancouver! They are now on their way to achieving their research goals.

Group Dynamic:

This group consists of a collection of strong personalities, different work styles, and has had to deal with lots of compromise due to busy school schedules. Many of the members are interested in furthering their studies with Village Vancouver through directed studies. Their biggest challenge has been communicating with their community partner and deciding on the boundaries of their project to ensure tangible results. They have had lots of help from their TA and their break out room peers! They’ve had a rough start but feel like they are on the road to accomplishing their goals and have used the hardships to become even better at working together and feel more equipped to dealing with similar problems in real life situations.


Welcome to the 2012 Land, Food & Community 350 series!

This blog is a composite of the many terrific experiential learning stories taking place within our LFS 350 class this term! Our students are working together and with community partners to solve land and food system sustainability issues using their knowledge and skills to enhance food security and create a positive relationship with their community.

October 19, 2012Permalink 1 Comment