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Dartmouth Family Centre & Dartmouth North
Community Food Centre

Who are you and what hub are you with?
Dartmouth Family Centre & Dartmouth North Community Food Centre

How would you describe your hub?  Would you say that it's intentional or accidental?

How old is your hub?
Incorporated in 1996

What stage of development would you say you're in? Where along the hub 'spectrum' would you put yourself?
Dartmouth Family Centre is an established community hub providing a wide range of supports and services to meet the diverse needs and interests of families and the community of North Dartmouth.  Dartmouth North Community Food Centre is a project of Dartmouth Family Centre, and a community hub that officially opened its doors August 2015.  Dartmouth North Community Food Centre currently provides a wide range of supports and services that meet the needs and interests of the community of Dartmouth North with a focus on food security.

What services are offered at your hub? What are some of the reasons people come in?
Dartmouth Family Centre offers a variety of programs and supports to families and the community. Parent & Child/Baby Playgroups: together with your child or baby, explore the playroom, interact in new and fun ways, and access information or support. Community Drop-In Room: visit our drop-in space with toys and comfortable seating where you can meet other families, relax, learn about programs and resources in the community or chat with staff. Respite Childcare: quality childcare while you go offsite or are involved in a program. Enhanced Home Visiting Program: receive support in your home, beginning in baby’s first four months. Parenting Programs & Workshops: explore & discuss parenting in a group setting. One-On-One Support: meet privately with staff to get information, receive support or problem solve. Prenatal Program: access information on prenatal health, labour & delivery, and what to expect when baby arrives, in an informal group setting. Community Trading Cupboard: trade non-perishable food items & toiletries. Well-Baby Clinics: meet with a public health nurse to discuss you and your baby's health. IWK Women’s Wellness Clinics: meet with a Social Worker or Registered Nurse. Ages and Stages Screening Tool: a set of questionnaires designed to help you check your child's development at various times between birth and 5 years of age. Volunteer Program: volunteer with Centre programs, workshops, and child development.  

Dartmouth North Community Food Centre offers a range of supports and services such as: Community Kitchens: cook a meal with others in a group setting; all ingredients will be provided.  Garden & Greenhouse: support the community garden from planting to harvest; learn from experienced gardeners or share what you know.  Food & Health Workshops: join us to learn and discuss issues related to food and health, e.g. diabetes, nutrition, and food budgeting.  Community Meals: join us for a free and healthy delicious meal prepared by our chef and volunteers.  Affordable Weekly Produce Market: visit our weekly market for affordable produce; enjoy coffee with neighbours; take part in fun activities.  Youth Cooking & Gardening: enjoy programs for young children and their parents, as well as programs for school-aged children and teens.  Community Drop-In: come by during our drop-in times where you can meet staff and volunteers, learn about programs, access other community supports, or just relax with a coffee and the paper.  Volunteer Program: volunteer with the meals, garden, market, drop-in, or childcare programs; receive training to become a qualified peer mentor and offer support to others.  Community Action Programs: come together to discuss issues that affect you and your community; plan how to take action through social justice groups.  Get Moving: join us for a movement session such as Walk & Talk or Gentle Yoga.

How do people get to your hub?
The majority on foot or by bus.

What is your governance structure?  Do you have a board of directors?
Board of Directors

If you have staff, how many and what are their roles?
1 Executive Director. 13 Staff at Dartmouth Family Centre. 5 Staff at Dartmouth North Community Food Centre.  Roles include: Coordinator Roles, Program & Service Delivery Roles, Administrative Roles.

Who are your key partners?  What roles do they play?
Both Dartmouth Family Centre and Dartmouth North Community Food Centre maintain various partnerships with a range of community resources.  Some examples of partnerships include: IWK (Young Mothers Project, Registered Nurse, Social Worker), Public Health, Dalhousie Legal Aid, Matrix Addictions Program, Public Good Society, Stairs Food Bank, Feed Nova Scotia.  Often our partners will provide services out of Dartmouth Family Centre and/or Dartmouth North Community Food Centre.  Feed Nova Scotia provides us with bread daily for the community to access.  We visit Stairs Foodbank weekly and provide child development activities and information on community resources while parents and children wait to pick up their order.

How are you funded / supported? What are your income streams? (ie.  grants, membership, federal gov’t, provincial gov’t, municipality, social enterprise)
The following is a list of funders/partners who have provided us with funding (either ongoing/long term, or through individual grants etc.) Capital District Health Authority, Public Health Agency of Canada, Nova Scotia Department of Community Services, United Way Halifax, Employment & Social Development Canada, Community Food Centres Canada, Sisters of Charity, RBC Foundation, Sobeys Atlantic, The Sprott Foundation, Green Shield Canada Foundation, The J.W. McConnell Foundation, Ultima Foods Inc., The Windsor Foundation, Donner Canadian Foundation, McInnes Cooper, The Lawson Foundation, The Fleming Charitable Foundation, Edwards Family Charitable Foundation, Halifax Regional Municipality, Evergreen, Dartmouth Community Health Board

Do you have a volunteer program?  If so, what works and what doesn’t?  How does it run?
Yes both sites have a volunteer program.  Our volunteer programs encourage community members to build capacity in their areas of interest and increase their involvement in their community.

In context of your community, are you a functional or geographic hub?

Are you a resource for other community projects?

How much of your space is accessible to the public?  Is there an open space to just sit down / linger?  
Both locations have drop in space accessible to the public.  Both spaces allow participants/community members to sit comfortably and engage with fellow community members / linger.

How do you make your space comfortable, warm / welcoming?
Staff are available to welcome and engage participants/community members to help them feel comfortable.  Spaces are arranged to be inviting, clean, engaging and child/family friendly.  Fresh flowers are kept on tables.  We decorate our drop in spaces for the season or a special occasion.

Story Questions
Who uses your hub? Who benefits?
Community of Dartmouth North

What kind of feedback do you get from your users?
We gather feedback on an ongoing basis.

What motivates your volunteers?
Many of them are directly from the community.

Is there space for informal socializing or for more formal programming, or both?

What is your group doing to encourage different groups / individuals to meet one another and network / build social capital?
Provide a variety of formal and informal program opportunities where community members can meet new people.  Staff are present to welcome community members and to facilitate conversations between community members.

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