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Richmond mall addresses food insecurity with Mother's Day event, regular workshops

Proceeds from Lansdowne Centre's Mother's Day bouquet-making workshop will benefit Richmond Food Bank
Lansdowne Centre's food garden initiative is returning for the third year in a row.

The Richmond Food Bank has seen a 56 per cent increase in families accessing grocery assistance services compared to the previous year, and Lansdowne Centre is hosting a series of events to help address food insecurity in the city.

“This increase has a lot to do with the high food prices, high cost of renting, economic uncertainty, and the ongoing refugee crisis," said Hajira Hussain, Richmond Food Bank executive director.

"We are serving a lot more seniors, new immigrant families, students, and refugees than what we used to pre-pandemic."

This Saturday, May 13, Lansdowne Centre is holding a Mother's Day bouquet-making workshop for 250 children. The workshop is by donation only with a minimum of $5, and all proceeds will be donated to the Richmond Food Bank.

“Monetary donations allow the Richmond Food Bank to purchase the most needed items. For every $1 donated, $7 worth of groceries can be provided to local families who are experiencing food insecurity,” said Bronwyn Bailey, Lansdowne Centre's marketing manager.

The workshop will be held in tandem with the return of Lansdowne Centre's Veggie Day, which will take place from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Visitors will get to enjoy a variety of arts & crafts and workshops, as well as the opportunity to spin the wheel for prizes. Gardening experts will also be onsite to answer gardening questions. 

A second Veggie Day will be held later on July 15.

The Lansdowne Centre Food Garden has also returned for the third year and will be donating produce to the Richmond Food Bank Society and Urban Bounty to support families experiencing food insecurity and offer fresh meals to local elementary schools.

More than 2,000 lbs of food was donated in the past two years.

For community members of all ages who would like to learn more about gardening, a resident gardener is currently holding onsite drop-in gardening workshops every Monday from May 8 to October 2 from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. The workshops will cover different topics each week and offer hands-on opportunities. 

An Instagram-worthy greenhouse has also been set up for photo opportunities.