Seeds for Change Gardens

About Us

Seeds For Change (SFC) is a grass-roots community organization, partnered with the York Region Food Network (YRFN), to create healthier neighbourhoods through school and community gardens. We formed this organization to address many problems facing Canadians in the 21st century: obesity, diabetes, reduced physical outdoor activity natural deficit disorder, hunger, food security and disappearing agricultural land.

SFC’s school gardens and outdoor classrooms encompass organic cultivation methods and food production. Our community gardens foster multicultural and intergenerational relationships. We are facilitating York Region’s anticipated exponential growth, creating environmentally sustainable communities with a social conscience, increasing volunteerism throughout the region and emphasizing the importance of “giving back”.

Seeds For Change serves as a catalyst for all community gardeners who share the same vision of advocating positive change in promoting health and wellness.  We are linking like-minded organizations as we become a resource hub providing information in all aspects of cultivating urban/suburban arable land into gardens.  By providing related workshops, joint funding opportunities, how-to manuals, curriculum and lesson plans, training, seed exchanges, sharing resources and volunteer coordination, we will collectively deepen our roots and propel the food revolution.

Our Team

Lynne Honey Koss

Queen Bee- Project Manager

Lynne Honey Koss

Lynne’s vision for Seeds For Change evolved from her passion to address a worldwide social issue and make a positive impact for many people, starting locally to create a ripple effect.

Her philanthropic roots sprouted from her parents and have been passed down to her daughters, with Marissa, the eldest, playing an integral role in this vision they’ve created together. Growing healthier neighbourhoods through school and community gardens.

Lynne has honed her marketing, administrative and leadership skills over the course of a 25-year career serving companies such as Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts, The Hospital for Sick Kids, The Career Foundation, Baycrest’s- Wagman Centre, Shaare Zedek Hospital in Jerusalem, Shropshire Communications, and the Canadian National Institute for the Blind. Her work with charities has enabled her to master the intricacies involved in the direct relationship between the private and not-for-profit sectors.

Lynne is described as “one of those rare people who always has a smile in her voice no matter how challenging the task at hand”…

Marissa Wiltshire

Earth-Mother (East)- School Garden Liaison

Marissa Wiltshire

A young entrepreneurial mother of two, Marissa has always made helping others a major component of her day’s work. She believes in social justice, equality and the desire to inspire and empower people to become compassionate, socially-conscious and responsible leaders.

Working 22 years within various sectors of the service industry, Marissa developed leadership, communication and strong organizational skills enabling her to balance her extraordinary schedule of home-life, three jobs, as well as chairing the fundraising committee at her daughter’s school.

“Marissa is an empathetic listener, whose thoughtful, insightful advice is acknowledged and valued with gratitude”.

Nicole Doray

Garden Coordinator

Nicole Doray

Nicole believes passionately in the importance of environmental sustainability and good food education as tools to strengthen communities and create a better world. Since 2010, Nicole has created and facilitated many innovative and educational workshops on environmental awareness and healthy living for Seeds For Change gardeners aged 2-82. Providing hands-on education is her most satisfying contribution, as she believes that education is the key to long term sustainability both locally and globally. In addition to her role as a youth and garden coordinator, her position has now expanded to include the training of new staff and interns as well as managing our growing list of volunteers. Working with her Seeds For Change family on event planning, workshop facilitation and volunteer coordination has allowed her to grow a deeper appreciation for her community, foster incredible relationships and grow everyday.

Kate Greavette

2015 Campaign Coordinator

Kate Greavette

Kate Greavette connects the York Region Food Charter to the 2,015 Campaign. The York Region Food Charter aligns with a food movement across Canada, promoting a system from farm to plate that provides access to local, affordable and nutritious food. The York Region Food Charter is a vision of thriving urban and rural communities where residents, businesses, and governments are creating a resilient food system, and food-related policies and programs in the region are being coordinated. With the 2,015 Campaign, Kate is excited to be combining her experiences in urban agriculture and food systems thinking with the belief that food has the potential to strengthen and improve our community.

Myles O’Brien

Steering Committee Member

Myles O’Brien

Myles grew up in Markham and currently resides in Stouffville with his wife and three young children.  He studied food and education systems in York University’s Masters in Environmental Studies program, and has been involved in various initiatives that link farming, food gardening, schools and communities.  In 2008 he helped found the Downtown Stouffville Farmers’ Market, and in 2011 campaigned for healthier communities as the provincial Green Party candidate for the Markham-Unionville riding.  Myles is a Program Coordinator for the Town of Richmond Hill.

Erin Keenly

Member

Erin Keenly

Studying Humanities at York University has made Erin keenly interested in new ideas and the ways that people connect. So, witnessing people brought together over the simple act of growing food is both therapeutic and exciting. Through completing an internship with Seeds for Change under the direction of Nicole, and in the position of garden coordinator, Erin learns more every day about the dynamics of local food production, creating educational programs, and the many surprising things in between. As retaining our sense of integration with the earth and our neighbourhoods is an increasingly difficult task, Erin is delighted to be working with a team which values this so deeply, and to see such positive reception from the community.