East York Neighbourhood Initiatives (formerly the East York Community Kitchen) is a volunteer run community group working with several local agencies as well as City Councillor Mary Fragedakis. The Community Kitchen provides a public space where people can get together and prepare a nutritious meal to enjoy. Our goal is to provide a welcoming environment for NODA community members to learn and share food skills. We launched on November 3rd, 2013 and we have a great group of participants that come out regularly.
The program is free and we also provide TTC tokens and child minding to try and remove as many barriers for participants as possible. The East York Community Centre is also an accessible building and has recently installed a community garden on the south side of the building. Our hope is that we can grow the community kitchen program and start new initiatives that will help animate the community.
We also run a weekly Good Food Box drop-off from FoodShare Toronto for the neighbourhood and we are currently looking to raise funds for a mural on the community centre wall.
The initiative came out of the NODA (North of the Danforth) Research Project. You can read here for more information on the NODA study: http://www.srchc.ca/program/north-danforth-noda
We currently funded in part by the South Riverdale Community Health Centre, City of Toronto and the Big Carrot and we are looking for more funding to ensure our program continues without barriers to access.
If you are interested in becoming more involved with the kitchen or other initiatives, please let us know.