Blog 4: Analyzing the Effectiveness of an Asset-Based Approach Through a New Lense

We wonder how an asset-based development approach may affect the long-term growth of a program if critical feedback of possible program deficits are not prioritized.

Image 1: Group 11 members from left to right: Yuan, Mikaela, Emma, Keiten and Elena standing alongside their DTES Foodscape poster that was presented to LFS members, staff, and Vancouver community members on March 26, 2018.


Past studies have indicated that there is a high prevalence of female targeted violence in co-ed homeless shelters (Duchesne, 2015). This issue has since been addressed and subsequently, women’s only shelters and programs have been developed. Although these facilities are a great stepping stone towards eradicating violence targeting women, they fail to address potential violence amongst women that could occur in these programs.

Throughout this course we have been taught to focus primarily on the assets of certain programs and build upon them, as opposed to focusing on program deficits (“Session 2 – Food Justice + Asset-Based Community Development”, n.d.).  This way of analyzing programs is beneficial in many ways but may fail to evaluate the program in its entirety. In order for these programs to best meet the needs of the individuals they are serving, constructive feedback regarding program deficits is essential for program improvement. If we fail to acknowledge certain program deficits, these deficits will only worsen and thus the functionality of the program will be impaired.


A moment of significance occurred while we were surveying one of the women’s only food shelters. A woman approached us asking if we were government workers, as she wanted to express her concerns about the program and be apart of the conversation between program and government workers. It was evident that she felt excluded from conversations regarding how the program was being run. She voiced her fear regarding her personal safety in the program, as she mentioned that her personal items were often stolen. She also noted that there were daily fights amongst women who accessed the program.

So what

This conversation brings to light a larger issue regarding food security of homeless individuals. The definition of food security states that one must have access to SAFE and nutritious food (Hodson, 2017).  In the aforementioned example, while the program did provide food of adequate quantity, individuals accessing the program didn’t feel safe which could affect the frequency of their usage of the program and in turn negatively impact their nutritional status. In order for a program to ensure that the individuals it serves are food secure, it must encompass ALL of the requirements that are set within the definition of food security, such as creating a violence-free atmosphere.

Now What

In our final report (that will be given to our community partner and Vancouver Coastal Health) we will make recommendations (based off of our project findings) of where we believe future funding could be allocated, in order to ensure food security for individuals accessing programs in the DTES. We suggest that government funding of food programs could consider allocating funds towards violence prevention training (for staff members), equipping staff with the necessary tools and behavioral strategies needed to diffuse fights and create a welcoming and safe environment.


Historically women are at the greatest risk for familial and gendered violence (Browne & Bassuk, 1997) . As a result, female-only programs have been created in areas such as the DTES in an attempt to mitigate the prevalence of violence against women, as it is common for homeless women to experience physical violence (Duchesne, 2015 ). In a study done by D’Ercole & Struening the researchers found that 63% of respondents reported some type of violence from their adult partner (Browne & Bassuk, 1997) while more recently, a study conducted by the Women’s Coalition in the DTES found that 48% of women had experienced violence in the last two years (Women’s Coalition, 2014).  Additionally, for females, binge drug-use and drug dealing were also positively correlated with violence (Marshall, Fairbairn & Wood, 2018). These findings further indicate the importance of prioritizing violence prevention in this population.

Next Steps

We suggest discussing our group’s findings from the survey with our community partner can help to determine how it can be distributed throughout the community, as it can be a valuable resource. One possible way to do this is by condensing our infographic into a brochure so that our survey results can be shared with the DTES community. This information will help DTES residents learn about the specific foods that DTES food programs offer, making it easier to locate where foods that are suited to their dietary needs are located.

Weekly Objectives

This week we hope to finish all course requirements for LFS 350. We have now completed our infographic presentation which was a great learning experience. We are grateful for the opportunity we were given to share our project findings with community partners as well as LFS staff and hear their feedback. This week our goal is to complete our final report. We will also contact our community partner and send her our final report. We hope to complete our final assignments for this course in a timely manner and dismount gracefully with as much ease as possible, in order to minimize the stress we are feeling regarding our upcoming final exams.


  1. Finished the data analysis of our survey results.
  2. Completed the group infographic and presentation.
  3. Began working on our final report.


A limitation of our project was that our findings do not represent the entire community as we only spoke with the Downtown Eastside food programs’ staff therefore only viewing this situation from their perspective. We did not speak directly to residents and as a result, there were viewpoints and opinions that were absent from the conversation. Our survey also only included 18 DTES food organizations, limiting our sample size. For future research on the Downtown Eastside regarding food programs and dietary restrictions, researchers should include input from residents as well and increase the sample size of food programs surveyed, in order to more accurately represent this community’s needs.

Future Advice

To future LFS 350 students: The way in which you will learn about food security and food justice in this course is incredibly unique because you often will experience it in a real life setting, so embrace it. At times, it will be unclear what your projects outcomes may be but trust the process. As the end of the term approaches, your findings will become evidently clear. Don’t be disappointed if your project outcomes don’t match up to the objectives set at the onset of your project, as this may mean you have brought to light concepts/findings that may have been previously overlooked! Lastly, be a team player, and do your fair share of the group work. At the onset of the term, make very clear expectations with your group of who will do what roles! Enjoy!


Upon reflecting on this experience, we see the immense value of asset-based community development. We believe that asset-based community development is an essential component when creating community food services and programs, however we believe that acknowledging program deficits and gaps is essential for a program to grow and be sustained in the long-term. We believe this is of the utmost importance as we experienced firsthand the daily fear of violence that individuals face when accessing programs that they rely upon for essential human needs.


Browne, A., & Bassuk, S. S. (1997). Intimate violence in the lives of homeless

and poor housed women: Prevalence and patterns in an ethnically diverse sample. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 67(2), 261-278.

Duchesne, A. (2015). Women and Homelessness in Canada: A brief review of

the literature, 7-8. McGill University. Retrieved from

Hodson, R. (2017). Food security. Nature, 544(7651), 5.

Marshall, B. D. L., Fairbairn, N., Li, K., Wood, E., & Kerr, T. (2008). Physical

violence among a prospective cohort of injection drug users: A gender-focused approach. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 97(3), 237-246.

Session 2 – Food Justice + Asset-Based Community Development. Retrieved 7 April 2018, from

Women’s Coalition. (2014). Getting to the roots: Exploring systemic violence

against women in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver, 6. Retrieved from

Blog Post 3


Through this experiential learning project we have had the opportunity to experience first-hand many of the topics we have discussed in class. While surveying food programmes in the Downtown Eastside (DTES) we have seen the effect that gender, race and age all have on food security. There have been many significant moments that we have experienced while participating in this project. An overarching theme we have experienced is the complexity of food security and how vastly different the definition of food security is when you see it on paper and believe that it can be easily achieved with adequate funding and support, when in reality, it is much more complex than any written definition could portray. Each food programme has different assets and areas that improvements could be made.

Weekly Objectives:

  • Compile all of our qualitative data in order to begin forming information sheet
  • Begin preparation of infographic
  • Start to work on final report


  • Completion of all surveys
  • We designed a time frame that fits all team members schedules in order to complete upcoming assignments

Moments of Significant Change

Our group has contributed to completing our community project over the term and throughout we have made achievements. The most challenging part throughout this term that we have noticed is getting good grades on our blogs. For the past two blogs, we got pretty low marks for our first submission. Before submitted them, all the group members went through the text to ensure the instructions were being followed. However, the marks we got were not at all what we were anticipating and we found this could have been due to following the instructions on the LFS 350 website rather than the rubric found on Canvas, which we had not been aware of due to following the website instructions only.

So What
Our group recognized that we need to take it seriously and find out how we could improve for next blog submission. Due to the feedback, we found that the biggest problem was even though we followed the instructions posted on the LFS website, we still ignored the rubric on Canvas. In addition, other aspects such as grammar, explanation and structure needed more effort put into it.

Now What
As we found out where we need to focus on to make improvements, before we write, we as a group discuss the material for every part together. When we write the blog, we follow both the instructions and rubric carefully. After everyone has contributed to the blog, each team member has the chance to proofread it and edit before submitting it. We hope we will get better mark after recognizing our mistakes and improving our blog writing techniques.

Something our group noticed as we went to various Downtown Eastside (DTES) food programs is that most of them depend primarily on donations, making it difficult to create daily options such as: dairy or sugar alternatives, gluten-free, whole grains, etc. We gathered that what they serve is generally what they receive from donors, leaving many of the programs without the choice to serve specific foods for individuals with dietary restrictions. One paper we read for class, “Learning to see food justice,” had a quote saying “Everyone wants good food,” the author goes on to talk about how eating nutritious foods is not as easy as it may seem for some people in certain circumstances (Dixon, 2014). This stood out to me because this perspective is something we continued to encounter while talking to various food programs in the DTES; many of the kitchen staff said they would have loved to give these options everyday but it just was not possible because they either didn’t have the money to provide these options regularly or their donations were not made-up of these foods primarily. There were a few food programs that did have donors that offered such foods and products but the majority we found did not have the financial means to gets these foods or their donations did not fit this criteria, making it even more difficult for people with dietary restrictions to get access to certain foods.

Another moment that struck us as significant and further exemplified how multifarious the definition of food security is occurred while we were in a facility waiting to interview a staff member. A woman came up to us wondering if we were city/government workers that were evaluating the program. We told her we were from UBC but she proceeded to tell us everything she wanted to in the hopes that we could in some way express her comments to city/government representatives. A key concern she mentioned was that when she came to the facility to get food and access its food program, she did not feel safe as there was frequent fighting amongst individuals accessing the program and that her belongings were often stolen. This dilemma highlights the ongoing issue of food insecurity in the Downtown Eastside and the multiplicity and complexity of achieving food security in its completeness. While having access to nutritious food is part of the definition of food security, it alone, does not constitute an individual being food secure, as to be food secure someone must have access to safe and nutritious food. Thus, accessing food from a facility where the individuals feels unsafe does not fulfill the definition of food security in its entirety. While there are many food programs that offer food, if individuals do not feel safe while eating they will be deterred from accessing and using available food programmes.

In one food programme we surveyed, the worker explained to us the history of how the program had evolved and what changes had been made to ensure mothers were getting adequate access to nutritious foods. During the onset of the program, they allowed individuals to take the food and leave, unfortunately, over time, they noticed that many of the mothers who were accessing their programs and seemingly taking the food provided, were not actually consuming the food. The women, many of whom were either pregnant or lactating mothers (both of which have increased nutrient requirements) were often taking the food and giving it to their partners. This behaviour emulates a vital current conversation occuring within the food system, the relationship between gender and food. This is further highlighted in the interview with Dr. Kate Cairns, where she talks about the relationship between food and femininity and a woman’s desire to be able to feed her family. She explained that if a women is unable to feed her family she feels as if she has ‘failed’ and that the “stakes are so high … around femininity and food, … [and] that this was a really potent site of emotion” (Cairns, 2016).

As mentioned, the author speaks about the importance of providing women with safety and supportive environments, two things of which this food program has done an excellent job of ensuring for the women that access its program. The changes the program made requires women to eat the meal in the facility, to ensure that they are consuming the food themselves, the program also allows the mother to bring their partner and or children in with them as long as the partner is respectful and polite. This progressive and socially aware program has begun to breakdown the gender inequalities seen in the food system, by creating a safe and inclusive space for women to gather.

Graceful Dismount:
So far our team has worked very hard at surveying numerous organizations and completing our assignments/blog posts. We have felt satisfied with how the surveys had gone but at times very discouraged with the marks we have received for our assignments/blogs. Through these emotions we have realized that positivity, determination, and teamwork are crucial for this project and most likely other current and future aspects of our lives. At this point we have completed all of our surveys and are working to compile all the qualitative data we have gathered. To finish off this course we plan to time manage and start our final report early as the end of the year can be quite hectic. With only one month left of our project, our strategy is to continue working hard, supporting each other, and staying on top of our project. This will ensure we finish the term with a sense of accomplishment and submit a project that we as a team are proud of as well as beneficial for the DTES Neighbourhood House and the DTES community. Furthermore, we will aim to stay on task, complete our assignments early when possible, strictly follow assignment rubrics, continue to stay positive, continue to communicate within our group effectively, and continue to be flexible with any obstacles we may come across. We are excited to analyze our data, create a informational fact sheet, and complete our project on a positive note.

Each program we surveyed has different assets as well as challenges. Throughout our survey we saw first-hand different aspects of food security and the variation in the food that is provided to residents of the Downtown Eastside. Each food service provider offers a unique program to the community, varying in the number of meals per day that they offer as well as the content of what they provide. All these organizations play a vital part in the lives of the residents and even though some may not provide the most nutritious foods they all expressed the benefits that they do provide and are aware of possible improvements that can be made. It was an amazing experience to witness the impacts that these organizations have on the lives of so many and to better understand food justice and security of the Downtown Eastside Community of Vancouver.

Dixon, B. A. (2014). Learning to see food justice. Agriculture and Human Values, 31(2), 175-184. 10.1007/s10460-013-9465-3

Cairns, D. (2016). 5: Food & Femininity. Racist Sandwich. Retrieved 11 March 2018, from



Proposal Report


Weekly Objectives:

  1. Check in with our community partner to discuss our project plan and progress
  2. Begin to go out in the DTES to survey the 25 organizations we are set out to meet with
  3. Complete said surveys within the next 2 weeks so that we can start final report


  • We have completed our project proposal and now have began to revise it
  • We have started surveying and meeting with some of the 25 organizations
  • We are learning to adapt to the survey questions as we have found that each individual organization is different and offer different assets to the community


Over the last few weeks we have learned how to appropriately conduct surveys in a sensitive and positive manner, to ensure we do not offend the person we are surveying and to get the most honest results, that accurately reflect each facility’s food program. Some of the questions in our survey have the potential to offend the surveyee as they may highlight the deficits instead of the assets of their food programs. If the surveyee answers ‘no’ to multiple questions, they may feel defeated and could feel ashamed or embarrassed that their program is not able to incorporate certain food items that we asked about. We discussed strategies about how to celebrate the assets of each food program that we surveyed while also getting the information that we needed.


Upon submitting our proposal and receiving feedback, we have learned about the importance of conducting thorough preliminary research on the community we will be surveying. Obtaining background history and knowledge about the Downtown Eastside (DTES) community is integral to the success of our project as we must have sufficient knowledge about the community in order to best connect with the staff we are hoping to survey as well as to better communicate this in our final report.

When speaking with the staff of the various programmes we must make an intentional effort to use a tone of voice that does not sound judgmental or critical. Each program varies in days/times of the week foods are served, what foods they offer, and the number of people each organization serves on a daily basis. We now know how important each and every food program is at ensuring food security to many of the individuals in this community. Each location provides individuals from this neighbourhood with a warm place to eat and facilitates friendship and community building amongst individuals. It is for this reason that we must be careful and sensitive to the feelings of the staff at these programmes to ensure we are celebrating their accomplishments rather than pointing out their downfalls. It is evident that not all of these 25 organizations meet the needs of all dietary restrictions however, they do try to accommodate all of their community members’ needs with their limited resources.

While all of the aforementioned strategies are important in theory, we noticed that when actually sitting down face-to-face with a staff member from one of the organizations, they did not react as positively as we had anticipated. Our first respondent was very hesitant to answer many of our questions, especially when their answer to the question was ‘no’ and often tried to find a way to divert by talking about their donations or limited funds. We discussed how we could improve the experience for the responder and get the most accurate information about the organization’s food program. Going forward, at the onset of each interview, we will assure the person we are surveying that there is no wrong answer, and that we are merely trying to gather information to create a document highlighting where individuals can access food that will meet their dietary needs.

So What?

The questions that our survey asks could potentially offend some of the staff we survey, as it may highlight/bring to light food options that their program does not serve. For example, it is a lot easier for programs serving smaller numbers of people to be able to incorporate fresh fruits and vegetables into their menus compared to programs serving hundreds of people a day. On the contrary, programs that can serve hundreds of people are essential when comparing to programs that are not able to offer multiple meals a day or week.  In order to make sure that we do not offend anyone or cause individuals to feel that the DTES Neighbourhood House is superior, we will begin and end our survey with a question that celebrates their programs’ strengths.


Now that our proposal has been approved we are working on completing the 25 surveys at the different food programs on the Downtown Eastside, which we intend to complete in the next two weeks. This will give us ample time to compile our results and complete our final report and information sheet before the end of term. We will be splitting up into two groups, ensuring no one is ever alone, and we will not be doing any of our surveying at night, as instructed by our community partner Joanne. We met with Joanne to discuss our future contact with the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood House, Carol, and from now on we will be contacting her due to the position change at the organization. Joanne also confirmed the desired outcomes of our project and how to move forward with this work in the coming weeks.

Once all the surveys are completed, we can move forward with our qualitative data to create a information sheet that highlights the locations of the programs that offer options for those with dietary restrictions. The information sheet will be a great information source and tool for DTES residents to use to locate food programs that offer foods that comply with their dietary restrictions and needs. Our final report and information sheet will be sent to the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood House, which they can then share with the various food programs we surveyed.


Our project in the DTES focuses predominantly on the access of foods for low-income and/or vulnerable individuals with dietary restrictions. This is related to what we have discussed in class about how our food system is linked to issues related to class. Particularly, how for low-income and vulnerable individuals in the DTES, everyday is a struggle when it comes to finding ways to access low cost, nutritional foods. One paper states that there is no government entitlement program specifically for food in Canada, leaving charitable food programs in places such as the DTES with limited options because they are reliant on donations coming from private companies disposing of expiring and unsellable foods (Mendes, 2008). Low-income individuals don’t have much of a choice when it comes to what and where they are able to get their food, limiting options for those with dietary restrictions and often leaving them with the decision to give up a meal altogether or eat it anyway causing serious health implications. The issue of class within our food system often leaves many without the choice of where they can access healthy foods or food varieties, further enhancing problems for individuals with medical conditions that limit the foods they are able to consume.

A linkage we found while surveying around the DTES was the connection between gender and food. As we talked in the class, women and children are most vulnerable to malnutrition (Sachs & Patel-Campillo, 2014). One of the organizations we had surveyed is women-only. In order to meet the daily nutrients of pregnant women, this community provide them milk and eggs everyday. The staff told us that sometimes a woman with a man together, and the woman asked food to them, when she got the food she gave the food the man. When in this situation, the staff usually give them more food to make sure this woman having chance to eat.  They need the additional care especially in the DTES.


Throughout this project we have worked to better understand food security in the Downtown Eastside. From recent contact with our community partner we have decided that qualitative data analysis is far more suiting to our data than statistical analysis, which we originally planned to perform. Once all surveys are completed, we will compile our results along with our qualitative data onto an information sheet. We have came to the conclusion that statistical analysis of this small sample size may not be accurate or beneficial to the residents of this area and a visual aid such as an information sheet that outlines the dietary restrictive foods of each program will be more useful.


Mendes, W. (2008). Implementing social and environmental policies in cities: The case of food

policy in vancouver, canada. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, 32(4), 942-967. 10.1111/j.1468-2427.2008.00814.x

Sachs, C., & Patel-Campillo, A. (2014). Feminist food justice: Crafting a new vision.Feminist

Studies,  40(2), 396-410,489-490. Retrieved from



Blog Post 1


We are group 11 and this semester we are working alongside Joanne at the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood House. The DTES Neighbourhood House is a secular, locally governed, non-profit centre that is part of a global neighbourhood house movement and is located at 573 East Hastings Street in the DTES. The DTES Neighbourhood House mandate is to provide residences with local, seasonal, and fresh produce, as these are foods that not regularly found in the typical diet for the DTES residents . Moreover, their major goal is to provide residents with access to this community choice, as this is the first thing lost when you rely on your food coming from food banks. The DTES mission is to improve the quality of life within the DTES community. The DTES Neighbourhood House serves a weekly meal on Wednesdays prepared by volunteers the night before, using only fresh produce that has been donated from Pro Organics. During the rest of the week they offer oatmeal in the mornings.

First Impression

Our group attended the orientation event at the UBC Learning Exchange on January 22th, and we were given information regarding our project as well as the DTES community as a whole. We learnt that there are several communities that work together in the Downtown Eastside neighborhood. The UBC Learning Exchange provides support to the neighborhood through programs such as open computer labs, English conversation activities, and musical events, all of which residents of the neighbourhood thoroughly enjoy.

After the orientation meeting, we went to the DTES Neighbourhood House. The DTES Neighbourhood House is small and warm. Staff there are very friendly and helpful. There are many different activities that are held there throughout the week, for example, on wednesday individuals can be served fresh fruits and vegetables as well as whole grain bread. Residents also can cook together during certain special events.

As Ernesto Sirolli’s TED Talk mentioned, food distribution in different areas is always unequal; people have different power and access to food (Sirolli, 2012). Food justice exists when the benefits and risks of how food is grown, processed, transported, distributed, and consumed are shared equitably. Based on food justice, and community responsibility, the DTES Neighbourhood House tries their best to provide healthy and diverse food options to residents nearby. Having a diverse array of food options is incredibly helpful for  residents who have dietary restrictions such as diabetes or hypertension. Our task for this term is to research and collect data about 25 food programs in the DTES so that residents with dietary restrictions have access to information about the specific foodchoices these 25 food programs offer and where they are located. Our first impression of the  DTES Neighbourhood House was wonderful and we are so excited to work with them during this term.

Meet Group 11:

From Left to Right:  Yuan, Emma, Mikaela, Keiten, Elena

My name is Yuan Tian, I am in my third year of the Nutritional Sciences program. In my spare time, I like dancing, exercising, and cooking. Food is a big part of my life. I enjoy selecting food in the market as well as cooking it in my kitchen. As we see huge improvements in food technology, more processed food pours into the food market and we are faced with the decision to choose either fast food or food made from scratch. Food insecurity is also an issue to be considered. I chose this project because I want to talk to the local residents of the DTES  about their experiences and opinions on food. I want to immerse myself in the DTES community, and work alongside the community members to make sure they are food secure and that their diets are nutritionally adequate.

My name is Emma Caputo and I am currently in my third year of the Nutritional Sciences program. In my spare time I like to run, hike, ski and do yoga. I have always been interested in food and its impact that it has on people and I am really excited to explore the topics surrounding food justice more this semester. Food is something that creates a common ground for all people and working with the DTES neighbourhood programs this will create a greater understanding of this concept.

My name is Mikaela Kroeker and I am currently in my fourth year in the Food Nutrition and Health program. In my free time I love doing anything outdoors including, skiing, hiking, kayaking and running. I am passionate about food and its effect on the human body and its incredible ability to heal. I love to cook and experiment with new recipes. I chose this project because I am interested in seeing and learning more about the DTES foodscape and the different food options that are available to DTES residents. This community is close to my heart as one of my cousins lived here for many years and experienced many of the health challenges caused by inadequate nutrition that some DTES community members face. I am eager to immerse myself in this community, connect with residents and hope to be able to have a positive impact on the community by creating a thorough community resource document that includes all the different food programs and what dietary accommodations they offer for people with chronic diseases and allergies.

My name is Keiten Brown and I am in my 4th year at UBC in the Global Resource Systems program. Within this program I focus my studies on Canadian Aboriginal and Public Health. I am passionate about Aboriginal health and feel that a lot of people overlook the issues that this population endures within Canada. I hope to find a career in the medical field where I can improve some health issues/conditions, especially within my own Aboriginal community and communities across the country. This is one reason why I showed interest in the DTES Neighbourhood House project. A large portion of the at-risk population that live in the DTES are of Aboriginal descent, and therefore I’m very excited to be a part of this project. I am eager to learn more about food justice this semester and food security. I find the survey that we will perform to be very interesting. I think it is very important that people’s food allergies, preferences, and restrictions are met, I look forward to see how many locations cater to people’s unique dietary needs. I also like how DTES Neighbourhood House brings the community together and doesn’t just distribute food. Seperate from this project, in my spare time I love dancing, hiking, skiing, surfing, and travelling.

Hi I’m Elena Adiletta, I am in my 3rd year of Food, Nutrition and Health in the hopes of entering into the Food Science program. In my free time I enjoy cooking, playing soccer, and just getting outside. Growing up, food has always been an integral part of my family, our family of 8 would share meals everyday together and I think that taught me the importance of how food can bring people together. This is one of the many reasons that DTES Neighborhood House really interested me because I think bringing the community together through food is a great way to connect. I’m intrigued to find out what other food programs are offered throughout the DTES.

DTES Neighbourhood House

The organization we are working with this semester is the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood House (DTES). The objective of this project are as follows: conduct a survey that will collect data regarding food programs offered in the community and the dietary accommodations that each program offers. Next, once we have collected sufficient data we will create a resource document of all the different places that have food options for people with diverse dietary needs.

The DTES Neighbourhood House prides themselves on listening to the community members to create programs that the community needs and can benefit from. As we learned in the TED talk it’s really important to listen to the community and their needs rather than giving them what you personally feel they want. For instance, Joanne had said that many community members that go to the DTES Neighbourhood House appreciate the good food because some of them do not enjoy the processed foods that are donated very often. She also expressed that thecommunity appreciates the choices they are given for meals because they are able to choose from multiple dishes allowing them to feel dignified.


Sirolli, E. (2012). Want to help someone? Shut up and listen!. Retrieved from

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