News Local

Food security film to be screened in Port Hope

By Valerie MacDonald, Northumberland Today

Jeannette Breward

Jeannette Breward

PORT HOPE -- A Port Hope woman who wants to "spark" conversation about food security in her own community, and across Canada, has created a short film putting it front and centre.

After premiering in the Doc Now Festival in Toronto, Jeannette Breward's 34-minute film, 60 Seasons, will be shown Wednesday in Port Hope's Capitol Theatre.

There will be a Q&A after the showing, Breward said in an interview.

"This film was a thesis project from my MFA in Documentary Media at Ryerson

University. I knew I wanted to create a piece that showed some of the amazing movements that are taking place within my own community around food production and food security, as these are areas that I am passionate

about as well."

The film's catalyst is fellow Port Hope resident, Craig Smith, whose goal, according to Breward is to "teach the community about the ease with which they can grown their own food - even in a finite space.

"Craig is passionate about feeding our community and wants to empower people to start to take food production back into their own hands."

Two years ago, Smith started the Punk Rock Produce Community and Demonstration Garden on John Street in Port Hope that has expanded into a program to support food-banks locally and to start them in other parts of the world. It is a project Northumberland Today has been chronicling.

Another of Smith's goal's is to provide classes on preserving, canning and cooking, Breward said.

"I think food security is incredibly important, in both our community and at large," she said.

"The (number) of individuals who are utilizing food banks in our community, and in Canada in general, is only increasing...Food banks were established to be a temporary, emergency

measure to help the population recover from a recent recession. However, despite this original intention, the need for food banks has not abated as the economy improves. In fact, the opposite has happened.

"According to Food Banks Canada, over 850,000 individuals turn to food banks across Canada for assistance every month. They are run on a

volunteer and donation basis, so finding ways that we can help to support these institutions is paramount.

"The aim of 60 Seasons is to act as a conversation starter - encouraging people to not only become more curious about where the food they consume is coming from and how it is being grown, but also how they can help to support those in need in our community. Whether that be donating their time assisting at community gardens like Punk Rock Produce, or planting their own backyard or container gardens and bringing the excess produce to their local food bank - getting healthy, sustainably grown food to those who need it most is key."

Breward said it is imperative to get this message out to young people, and she hopes to screen her film in schools.

"I am thrilled to be able to bring this film back to Port Hope to screen it for the community within which is was created," she said.

Doors open 6 p.m. and ticket prices of $12 will go to the Northumberland Fare Share Food Banks.

"Tickets can be purchased at Suntree Natural Foods Marketplace or Limelight Advertising & Design in Port Hope, or at Craft Food House in Cobourg," states a media release.