What is Food Families?
Food Families is a dynamic program in which a group of neighbourhood families come together on a regular basis to form a network that supports, encourages, and mentors one another using food – purchasing, growing, sharing, learning, and celebrating – as a galvanizing focus.
Why Food Families?
Ensuring individuals and families have access to healthy food and for less money is possible! By offering the Food Families program in your neighbourhood, you can help families master tangible and easy ways to increase their buying power while learning practical and affordable ways to eat well.
How Does Food Families Help?
Eating healthy and stretching budgets to get through each month can feel frustrating, challenging, and like an impossible task for many families. A Food Families program aims to:
- Increase families’ knowledge, skills, and confidence around food and financial literacy;
- Increase families’ buying power;
- Increase families’ connections within their neighbourhood; and
- Decrease families’ time and cost around food purchasing and preparation
Offering a Food Families Program
We are so glad that you have decided to bring the program to individuals and families in your community. The following information below will provide you with access to Facilitator’s Guides, PowerPoint presentations, and handouts for each individual module. Each module will also provide you with a video introduction that provides a high-level overview and outline of that module, along with some additional insight that may be helpful as you prepare to facilitate.
What Do Individuals and Families Learn Through Food Families?
The following modules make up the Food Families program:
- Getting To Know You – Orientation
- Healthy Eating
- Couponing 101
- Price Matching/Meal Planning
- Kitchen Safety – Knife Skills
- Collective Kitchen(s)
- Money Sense
- Food Preservation
- Group Celebration
- Cooking With And For Your Kids
Introduction Document and Checklist
Food Families encourages each group facilitator to read through the Introduction document that provides general information about various elements of the program. Be sure to also print out a copy of the Checklist that will help you stay on track as you prepare for each module.
Before you get to the specific modules, Food Families has included two short introduction videos that outline various elements you need to consider as you prepare to implement the program. We encourage you to watch these videos before you go too much further into the individual modules.
Introduction Part I
Introduction Part II
Included here is access to the Food Families budget. This budget is an overview of the costs each group will need to consider. Expenses could change significantly based on the number of participants in your group, which activities you choose to implement, and what items or resources your group is able to have donated or provided to you through in-kind gifts.
Evaluation is an important part of the Food Families program and something we ask each group to make a priority. Included in the Toolkit is a full Evaluation Guide that outlines the evaluation framework, as well as step-by-step instructions for how to collect, record, and analyze data. You will find individual evaluations for each module in both the appendix of the Evaluation Guide, as well as in the handouts section for each module.
As part of the Food Families process and preparation, we encourage facilitators to provide participants with binders that will be used to collect handouts throughout the program. Food Families has designed a cover page that can be used to slip on the front cover of each binder. There is a specific cover for participants and one for facilitators.
Print the Facilitator Guide Before Watching Curriculum Videos
As you begin to make your way through each module, you may want to first print the Facilitator Guide for that module. With the outline of the curriculum in hand, please watch the corresponding video and take any notes that may be helpful as you move forward.
Enjoy your Food Families experience. We wish your group great success as you work your way through the program.