New group seeks to revitalize Sooke foodshed
Following up on initial exploratory steps taken last year by Trust board member Mary Coll from
Inishoge Farm, a team of locals interested in regional food security have started gathering lately at the invitation of the Sooke Region Farmland Trust and Transition Sooke.
      Coll and economist Mark Ziegler will make their case for developing the Sooke foodshed at Transition Sooke's
climate change evening, Wed. July 22, 7 p.m. at the St. Rose of Lima Church on Townsend Road. Admission free or by donation.
       As many discovered at our grantsmithing workshop in the spring, funds from the likes of the Victoria Foundation and Vancity are available for food security initiatives on Vancouver Island. As such, the new group is likely to seek funding for a full-time food security coordinator for the Sooke region. 
       Its steering committee is led by Christine Bossi and includes the Farmland Trust's Coll, Steve Unger and Mary Alice Johnson, Food CHI's Britton Jacob-Schram, the Sooke Fall Fair's Ellen Lewers, the Sooke Harbour House's Frederique Philip, Cast Iron Farm's Christiana St-Pierre, Chamber of Commerce past-president Michael Nyikes, chef Tom Kral, the Good Food Chain's Christopher Warner, and Transition Sooke's Martin Bissig and Jeff Bateman. 
2nd Annual Apple Fest
Sunday September 27th 10 am to 3 pm at SRG

 Sooke Food CHI and a small group of volunteers have plans underway to make our 2nd
Apple Fest even more inviting and inspiring than our first one. Apple info, identification, tours, and delicious “apple” foods to taste and buy including exciting food vendors with delectable tasting and snacks enough to make up a fine lunch. Another art exhibition sponsored by our Sooke Community Arts Council – Food Art. Watch for more details and artist callout. We welcome involvement and ideas, don't hesitate to call Glen at (250) 642-7906 or Phoebe at (250) 642-4342.
Johne's Disease
Local farmers recently organized an evening to hear Leo Hylkema of Mill Bay Veternarian Clinic talk about Johne's disease, a disease affecting sheep producers in our region. Farmers are experiencing diseases and pests that they hadn't experienced before, and are trying to support each other in learning and sharing
information about these problems and how to address them. We are building a resource page on the Food CHI site 
here. We also have a "Sooke farmer list-serve"; a communication tool for discussion. Please contact Mary Alice (
if you would like to be added.

Summer news from Sooke Food CHI

Food CHI’s directors are pleased to share with our members our summer news. Here you will find a number of events, partnerships and programs that reflects our mission to strengthen food security in our region.

Sooke Farm Tour This Sunday
July 19, 11 - 5 rain or shine

Come out this Sunday and experience “hands-on farming for a day” on this self guided fundraiser 
featuring 8 bountiful working farms stretching from East Sooke to Shirley.

Meet Sooke region farmers, and participate in farm activities. Hosts will highlight their passions and what their farm brings to the community as well as discuss the challenges they face. Activities will range from seed saving, veggie and herb identification, soil blocking, bug bingo and kid friendly activities.

Tickets are $15 and free for those ages 12 and under. Available now and day of in Sooke at Peoples Drug Mart, Shoppers Drug Mart, Sooke Country market (through Silver Cloud Farm), Sooke Home Hardware and Stick in the Mud. Funds raised go towards supporting sustainable agriculture initiatives in the region. More info about the event can be found here and let us know you'll be attending by joining the event here

Memorial Garden for Pia Carroll
Pia Carroll passed in December of 2014 much to the sadness of her many friends and students. Pia was one of  our first members of Sooke  Food CHI when we first formed as an organization in 2007. Pia, one of the innovative chefs at Sooke Harbour House for years, and supporter of slow foods, the culinary art teacher at EMCS, brought so much knowledge, inspiration and fun to so many “food” events. We all became students of Pia! As busy as she was, she always found time for Sooke Food CHI and the Sunriver Community Gardens (SRG). In 2010 she even had a plot in the allotment gardens, where she could grow veggies that didn't thrive in those chilly summer days out at Tugwell!  She and her students helped host many lunches, feasts and special events at SRG, the most recent being last year’s Apple Fest. A garden is being created in Pia’s honour, down in the far corner of the orchard. Donations are 
welcome to help us finish up this special memorial garden for our dear friend Pia, with contributors names being placed on a plaque at the garden. Please mail to Sooke Region Food CHI, PO BOX 1001, Sooke V9Z 1J1. 
 Sunriver Native  Wetlands Garden  Work Party
 July 26, 9 -11 am

Bring gloves- tools provided. Come learn about this special Native Wetlands Garden, meet new people and have fun. Sunriver Community Orchard, 2380 Phillips Rd. For more info, contact Phoebe at or 642-4342.
 Volunteer at Food  CHI's Grow A  Row Plots
 Wednesday and Sunday  afternoons - 1 to 4 pm.

Call Paula at (
250) 642-5572, or drop by and volunteer to help grow, harvest and distribute produce to Sooke’s helping agencies, including Sooke’s Food Bank. Sunriver Community Gardens, 2380 Phillips Rd. 
Copyright © 2015 Sooke Region Food CHI Society, All rights reserved.