Since 2003, FortWhyte Farms (FWF) has operated with the vision of serving as a transformative force for youth and their families by providing a place of belonging, hope and purpose, new and improved sources of income, and increased access to high-quality food. FWF enhances the economic status and food security of diverse youth through the development of employment skills and financial literacy. Their mixed working farm is situated on an urban greenspace in Winnipeg, Manitoba, on Treaty 1 Territory and the home of the Metis Nation.
FWF works to increase capacity of youth by facilitating learning, supporting skill building and improving successful entry to meaningful adult employment through participation in food-based initiatives. Urban youth steward, cook and eat healthy, local food while gaining employment training in culinary arts, carpentry, farming, Farmers’ Market operations, Community Shared Agriculture and workshop facilitation. With the Centre’s investment on a three-year project, which started in 2018, FortWhyte Farms is guiding the youth involved in these programs through the development of year-round cold-climate food security modules. By involving youth in capturing and sharing knowledge and generating scalable education program modules on food and youth employment, FWF will provide tools communities can use to build food security.