As we navigate our second summer during the Covid-19 pandemic, it can be challenging to find ways to feel connected to your local community. Being connected in your community allows you to start new friendships and build connections, support those in need, support climate action, and so much more! So, we have compiled a list of safe, physically distanced ways you can get involved in your community!
Disclaimer – Please ensure you are always following your local health and safety guidelines, including COVID-19 protocols, when participating in activities in your communities. For more information about the current local COVID-19 health and safety protocols, visit the Halton Region COVID-19 website.
Get Gardening & Support Halton Food’s Grow and Donate Program – Whether you’re a backyard gardener, community gardener, large-scale gardener, or anything in between – it’s time to get gardening. Gardening is an excellent way to spend time outdoors, access fresh produce, and spend time with those who have similar interests.
The Halton Food Grow and Donate program is officially into its second year! We are always looking for fresh produce donations to our local food banks and community programs. All we ask is you earmark some of your home grown harvest, wash it, put it into clean bags, and donate it to one of our community partners. For more information about the Grow and Donate program or a list of donation locations, visit the Halton Food website.
Start a Container Garden – Does raised bed, community, and in-ground gardening sound too daunting? Try container gardening! Container gardening is an excellent way to grow fresh, local, organic produce during the summer when garden space is limited. Upcycle existing plastic containers, plant almost any vegetable you love to eat, and place outside anywhere there is sun – the possibilities are truly endless with container gardening.
Physically Distanced Local Cleanups – If gardening isn’t your thing, try participating in a physically distanced or solo local cleanup! You can participate as part of a larger effort, such as HEN’s Pop-up, Clean-up, or with the members of your household in your local neighbourhood. The tools you need are gloves, a container for the litter, and a local area to cleanup. Be sure to dispose of your collected litter properly and share a photo of your effort with us on social media.
Read Blog Posts and Watch YouTube Videos – Take this opportunity to learn more about sustainable food systems, gardening practices, food waste reduction, and food education! Our Halton Food blog is full of blog posts – just like the one you’re reading – on various gardening and environmental topics by local experts. We also release a monthly newsletter full of gardening resources, suggestions on ways to reduce your environmental impact, local events and webinars, Halton Food garden updates, and so much more.
Webinars and other online events are an excellent way to learn more and connect with local experts on various topics! Stay up to date with our social media on current and future events related to gardening. But if you would rather watch a video or past webinar about a gardening topic, we have you covered there, too! Visit the Halton Environmental Network YouTube Channel to learn more about seed saving, vermicomposting, environmentally-conscious gardening crafts for kids, and so much more.
Visit Your Local Farmers Market – The summer season is just around the corner, which means it’s farmers’ market season! Farmer’ markets are an excellent way to support farmers while eating fresh, locally grown produce. Many farmers’ markets also support makers and vendors, so you can also pick up baked goods, meats, cheeses, and other locally produced goods. Visit the farmers’ market websites for dates, times, locations, and updated safety policies for the Dorval Crossing Civitan Farmers Market, Burlington Centre Lions Farmer’s Market, Milton Farmers’ Market, Downtown Georgetown Farmers Market, and Acton Farmer’s Market.
How are you engaging and connecting with your local community? Share with us in the comments below!
Questions? Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contributed by Alicja Jazwiec, Community Garden Education Assistant