20 Voices from 20 Years: Kimberly Orren |
Frequent Partner and Consultant on Food First NL’s Projects
Kimberly Orren became involved with Food First NL in her capacity as founder and project manager for Fishing for Success. Fishing for Success is a nonprofit with a mission to transmit traditional fishing knowledge and skills, particularly to youth and women. They also promote the use of local fish as a culturally significant and sustainable food.
“We see local fish as a way of reconnecting with nature and ancestors, and other cultures through the shared human heritage of fishing,” says Kimberly. “I've been encouraged by Food First NL's continued support and encouragement of subsistence gardening and gathering, foraging and berry picking, even hunting.”
Kimberly says that while the global food distribution system has provided for us in recent decades, it has also made us vulnerable. “Many of us have noted with alarm the empty grocery shelves following a winter storm that hinders our ferry crossings, or a drought in some far-away land where our food is grown, and have recalled the days of Nan and Pop's root cellar.”
For Kimberly, some of Food First’s most important work extends beyond the garden gate. “I think Food First should be striving for greater support for small scale fisheries,” she says.
“I believe that real food security here in Newfoundland & Labrador will always be dependent upon protein from the Sea. To that end, making space for youth and women in fishing is vital for the future. The average age of commercial fishermen is almost 60, and there seems to be no plan for succession; and only about 20% of commercial fishermen are women, so there is a need for targeted programming to address this gender inequality. We should all have a seat at the table … or in the boat!”
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