Food & Mental Health – Exploring intersections of the food justice movement – TYFPC Community Meeting

Food and Mental HealthFeaturing speakers from Fat Girl Food Squad, Houselink, PARC, and more!

June 2, 2014

Parkdale Activity-Recreation Centre (PARC)
1499 Queen Street West, Toronto

Attend a free cooking workshop before the meeting from 4-6PM. All skill levels welcome! To attend the workshop, please RSVP to Andrew at so we know how many people to expect. Space is limited, so please RSVP as soon as possible. Those not attending the workshop are invited to arrive at 5:30PM for food.

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AMANDA SCRIVER. Founded in the spring of 2013, Fat Girl Food Squad arose out of Ama Scriver and Yuli Scheidt’s joint desire to create a space to talk frankly and openly about what really mattered to them. Fat Girl Food Squad is a blog, and more importantly ­- a community, focused on the intersection between food, fat, and feminism. Fat Girl Food Squad believes in people of all shapes and sizes eating good food and feeling good in their bodies, in every way possible. Within just one year, FGFS has grown to include Squads in Hamilton, Ottawa, Winnipeg, Denver, and beyond, with contributors as far and wide as L.A. and Australia. Amanda (Ama) Scriver is the Co-Founder and Head of Fat Girl Food Squad. She works full-time as an event planner and is currently the food-editor for Toronto is Awesome, staff writer for BlogTO and Eater Toronto and Toronto correspondent for BizBash. She enjoys random adventure and travel, loves the art of drag, listens to all hip hop everything, and has an affinity for all things nerd. Ama will be discussing the relationship we have with food and our bodies and how that effects our mental health.

JESSICA REEVE finished her Masters of Environmental Studies in August of last year where she focused on food systems, food policy, and community engagement. Jessica now works for Real Food for Real Kids and is an avid gardener in her spare time. Jessica’s major research paper for her Masters degree was on the topic of prison farms in Canada and the United States and how these can be an incredibly beneficial component of rehabilitation programs offered in penitentiaries. In addition to the complex socio-political context that surrounds these farms a crucial part of this work is horticultural therapy programming and the benefits that inmates can receive from contact with nature and animals.

BOB ROSE has worked for 32 in the community, in various roles: a member of the first mental health case management and street outreach program in Ontario, a 27 year history of PARC development, a founding member of the Toronto Drop-in Network (50+ agencies) and an advocate for the creation of the drop-in model. Over that time he has also played many activist roles: a former manager of the Toronto Disaster Relief Committee working to address the ongoing homeless crisis / an advocate for change in mental health support practices and the mental health system / an advocate for more progressive supportive housing. More recently his work has focused on food insecurity, food literacy and community partnership activity to create a food recovery model for marginalized people with mental health issues.

DREW SILVERTHORN. At a young age, Drew became interested in environmental sustainability and food. His love for food ended him up in culinary and pastry school where he focused on exploring how to apply classical culinary techniques to whole and plant based foods. After moving to Toronto from his rural community, Drew joined an environmental group to stay connected with his passion for local foods. After several years in the Toronto food scene, Drew entered the Bachelor of Social Work program at Ryerson University to explore the intersections of food insecurity and marginalization. He has facilitated workshops on food security and holistic approaches to mental health, among other topics. Drew identifies as both a survivor and consumer of mental health services and identifies as mad. Currently, Drew coordinates the Ryerson Students’ Union food bank and spends his extra time staying connected with local food movements.

Accessibility Information:

PARC is wheelchair accessible. The meeting room, kitchen, and washrooms are on the main floor. There is also a gender-neutral washroom located on the main floor.

The TYFPC strives to create accessible and inclusive spaces for all of its members. If we require accommodation to ensure your participation, please email

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