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Food Security Initiative Terms of Reference




The Food Security Initiative serves as an interdisciplinary and multi-stakeholder platform for students, academics, and practitioners to collaborate in promoting food security solutions through cross-campus, regional, and national collaboration and inclusive, student and faculty-led research opportunities. We aim to create scalable solutions to further policy and advocacy work and practices as part of our effort to transform food and social systems.


The target of the Food Security Initiative is to reduce the prevalence of food insecurity at UBC by 2025 (Wellbeing Strategic Framework target).


The Food Security Initiative has the following three goals and initial priority actions:

1. Deepen our understanding of food security within the University context

  • Collect and evaluate food insecurity prevalence data for a representative sample of students, staff and faculty.
  • Supporting student and faculty-led research: Understanding the lived experience of food insecurity on campus, including affordability and barriers to accessing resources. 
  • Assess “Community Food Security” components (e.g. food literacy, access to culturally appropriate foods).

2. Alleviate immediate pressures of food insecurity and enhance community food security at UBC 

  • Put in place short-term relief solutions for food insecure populations, including an online food hub (one-stop shop to find food and financial resources) and a stigma free digital meal donation program.
  • Enable systemic and inclusive approaches to community food security: enhance food skills, increase opportunities for food growing, promote dignified access to healthy, sustainable, and culturally appropriate foods. E.g. by scoping for physical food hubs as activation centers on each campus.

3. Foster knowledge exchange and advocacy efforts within UBC and beyond

  • Host a food security conference at UBC as part of activities to scale up on local, provincial, and national partnerships to foster knowledge exchange on food insecurity and advocacy work.
  • Identify assets and create resources to support advocacy work internally and externally, to prevent food insecurity and address affordability.
Policy/Strategic Plan Alignment 
UN Sustainable Development Goals 

Goal 3: Good Health and Wellbeing → addressing food insecurity which has shown to impact health, wellbeing, performance + taking into account the economic and social inequalities

Goal 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities → urban food production, community food security and wellbeing

Goal 12: Responsible Consumption and Production 

Goal 13: Climate Action → addressing food systems transformation

UBC Strategic Plan 

Strategy 3. Thriving communities: Support the ongoing development of sustainable, healthy and connected campuses and communities, consistent with the 20-Year Sustainability Strategy and the Wellbeing Strategic Framework.

Okanagan Charter 

Supports the vision, calls to action and principles set out in the Okanagan Charter: An International Charter for Health Promoting Universities & Colleges.

Wellbeing Strategic Framework 

Supports UBC’s Wellbeing Strategic Framework “Food & Nutrition” priority area, in particular target to “Reduce food insecurity for UBC community members by 2025 (targets to be developed based on 2019 baseline data).”

See appendix 1 for additional policy/strategic plan alignment. 


Food Security Initiative Structure

Initiative Roles and Responsibilities 


Provide support for Initiative related to strategic planning, facilitation, implementation, evaluation and research support for relevant focus areas.  


  • schedule meetings
  • distribute agendas, meeting minutes
  • co-chair/chair meetings
  • attend all meetings
  • report initiative results to VPS


  • Attend all meetings

Time Commitment 

Full time ( 5 days per week)


Core Team 


Actively participate in advancing the UBC Food Security Initiative by adding capacity, expertise and decision making capabilities to implement focus area actions. 


  • Be informed about the committee's mandate, policies, and initiatives.
  • Be prepared for and attend core team meetings (~2 per month)
  • Review communications, documents and provide feedback and recommendations.  
  • Serve and/or support the development of other ad-hoc working groups or task forces aligned with annual priorities.
  • Inform and engage others about the work of the Committee and link to the community and stakeholders.
  • Regularly report to the Food and Nutrition Committee and the Food Systems Project and engage groups in relevant decision making. 


  • Attend at least 75% of all meetings to remain on the committee (send alternate if unable to attend) 
  • Attend core team meeting (~2 per month) and food security initiative meetings (~1-2 per year) 

Time Commitment 

  • 1-2 days per week be involved in food security work in your area
  • 2 meeting per month
  • 1-2 hours preparation/ communications per week
Advisory Team  


Provide content and/or context* experience to initiative and relevant focus areas.

*Context expertise includes people with lived experience  



  • Be informed about the committee's mandate, policies, and initiatives.
  • Review communications, documents and provide feedback and recommendations as appropriate. 


  • Optional attendance at monthly core initiative meetings. 
  •  Attendance may be required 1-2 times per year for overall initiative meeting.

Time Commitment 

  • Variable - stakeholder and project specific


Participate in relevant focus area actions as appropriate



  • Be informed about the committee's mandate, policies, and initiatives. 
  • Provide feedback and recommendations on communications upon request
  • Participation in relevant focus area actions as appropriate


  • Invited as on needed basis

Time Commitment 

  • Variable - stakeholder and project specific



A reporting template will be drafted by the backbone team with input from the core team. Reporting on established indicators may occur 1-2 times per year at the broader Food Security Initiative meeting.

A six-month, 12-month, and 24-month progress report on mid-year funding will be provided to the VPS. 

The backbone support team will contribute to relevant UBC Executive and Board of Governors reports upon request. 

Ongoing progress reporting and consultation will occur to relevant committees, including but not limited to: the Food and Nutrition Committee, Wellbeing Strategic Support Team, UBC Food Systems Project.  

Initiative leadership will be provided by the Vice President Students and the Deputy Vice Chancellor and Principal of the Okanagan Campus, who will report to the UBC Board of Governors as appropriate. 

Decision Making

The Core team has authority for decision making, however will engage the advisory group (mainly the Food and Nutrition Committee and the Food Systems Project) and relevant partners for appropriate decision making. Additionally, the Core team will aim to engage the UBC community and students with lived experience to inform appropriate decision making. 

Key decisions that need to be presented to the UBC Board of Governors or Executive will be brought forward by the Vice President Students and the Deputy Vice Chancellor and Principal of the Okanagan Campus. 

Meeting Frequency 
  • Core team meeting ~every 2 weeks
  • Food Security Initiative may meet 1-2 per year 
  • Ad hoc working meetings as needed 
  • Any UBC community member can request to be involved in focus area work/groups

Attendance requirements within roles and responsibilities above.  


The backbone support team is: 

  • UBC Wellbeing: Sara Kozicky | Food Insecurity Project Manager
  • Campus Community + Planning: Nelly Leo | Food Security Applied Research Coordinator
  • Postdoctoral Fellow TBD | Faculty of Land & Food Systems (limited administrative duties – primarily research & evaluation support)

Core team members are as follows: 

  • UBC Wellbeing: Matt Dolf | Director, Strategic Support 
  • UBC Wellbeing: Natasha Moore | Planning and Evaluation Advisor
  • First Nations House of Learning | Siera Indigo Stonechild, Indigenous Student Coordinator
  • Campus Community + Planning: Liska Richer | Manager, SEEDS Sustainability Program
  • Student Housing and Community Services: Melissa Baker | Manager, Nutrition & Wellbeing 
  • UBCO Student Housing and Community Services: Julie Stachiw | Manager, Nutrition & Wellbeing 
  • UBCO Campus Health: Casey Hamilton | Campus Health Specialist
  • Graduate Student Society: Nicolas Romualdi | President
  • AMS: Dani Stancer | AVP Sustainability
  • AMS: Cali Schnarr  | Food Bank Coordinator
  • UBCSUO: Pantry Coordinator

Proposed advisors may include: 

Context experience: The specific engagement plan for advisors with context experience will be determined as part of the initiative, however, we will aim for our work to be informed by people with lived food insecurity experiences.

Content experience:

  • Members of the Food and Nutrition Committee and the Food Systems Project will be the main advisors for the initiative. Additional advisors not involved in either group may include: 
  • Faculty of Land and Food Systems: Candice Rideout | Senior Instructor, Food Nutrition and Health, Co-Chair Food Insecurity Action Team (FIAT)  
  • Student Housing and Community Services: Andrew Parr, SHCS | Associate Vice President, Co-Chair Food Insecurity Action Team (FIAT)  
  • Food Insecurity Postdoctoral Fellow TBD: | Land and Food Systems
  • AMS: Julia Burnham | VP Academic and University Affairs
  • AMS: Christina Ilnitchi | VP External Affairs
  • AMS: Abdul Alnaar | Student Services Senior Manager
  • Faculty of Arts: Sinikka Elliott | Associate Professor, Department of Sociology
  • Faculty of Health and Social Development UBCO: Joan Bortoff | Professor, School of Nursing 
  • Faculty of Health and Social Development UBCO UBCO: Mary Jung | Associate Professor, School of Health and Exercise Science 
  • Irving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences UBCO: Lesley Lutes | Professor, Department of Psychology 

Proposed partners may include: 

  • Equity and Inclusion Office 
  • First Nations House of Learning 
  • Student Support and Advising
  • Sprouts
  • Agora 
  • UBC Farm
  • UBC Climate Hub
  • AMS Sustainability Projects Coordinator
  • Alumni and Development
  • Musqueam and Okanagan Nation
  • BC Government (BCCDC Provincial Food Security Lead, Melanie Kurrein)
  • Community Dietitians working in Food Security 
  • Meal Exchange
  • Food Secure Canada 
  • Community Food Centres Canada
  • Interested students, staff, faculty 




Appendix: Affiliated Campus Plans and Policies 

Climate Action Plan 2020

Green Building Action Plan 

Zero Waste Action Plan

UBC Housing Action Plan 

UBC Vancouver Child Care Expansion Plan

UBC Inclusion Action Plan

UP12: Land Use Policy   


Status: Future

Indigenous Strategic Plan (expected Spring 2020) 

AMS Sustainability Action Plan (ASAP) (final TBC Apr 2020)

Climate Action Plan 2030  

Public Realm Plan 20XX (TBC Spring 2020)

Campus Vision 2050




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