Urban Agriculturalists win Canadian World Youth Alumni Award
Tim Murphy and Noemie Desbiens-Riendeau run the urban agriculture program at Santropol roulant. See the CTV video here.
For 17 years, Montreal’s Santropol Roulant has been delivering hot meals to those in need
By Kevin Gallagher
Nov. 25, 2012
On the rooftop of a building at the corner of Coloniale Ave. and Roy St. in Plateau Mont-Royal, Tim Murphy points to an expansive garden.
“This is part of that original vision we had, which was having a garden right up on our own roof,” said Murphy.
Murphy, the director of urban agriculture, and community coordinator Noemie Desbiens-Riendeau run the urban agriculture program at Santropol roulant.
For 17 years, the organization that has delivered hot meals to those in need.
The addition of a rooftop garden has resulted in more local and organic produce going into those meals.
Their work is so highly regarded, in October, the pair was decorated with a national award for their work in their community and in the garden.
Desbiens-Riendeau said it’s about more than just their organization, the garden helps sew the seeds of urban agriculture in Montreal.
Outstanding Canadian CWY Alumni Award – Tim Murphy & Noémie Desbiens-Riendeau
Tim Murphy & Noémie Desbiens-Riendeau are employees of Santropol Roulant, an award-winning community organization founded and run by young people in Montreal that brings people together across generations and cultures through an innovative approach to meals-on-wheels.
Tim has worked with Santropol Roulant since 2006 and is currently serving as its Director of Sustainability, where he is tasked with overseeing the development of the Urban Agriculture Program. Tim graduated from McGill University’s School of Environment and was a participant on Canada World Youth’s Quebec-Benin exchange in 1998-99, through which he discovered a passion for travel and community organizing.
Noémie has worked with Santropol Roulant since February 2011 and is currently serving as its Community Life Coordinator – Urban Agriculture Program. She completed a bachelor’s degree in agricultural science at McGill University. She then went on to gain a diversity of work experiences on organic market farms allowing her to obtain an in-depth understanding of the farming situation in Quebec.
The Urban-Rural Farm Exchange is an innovative project created by Tim and Noémie to address a need for more local, sustainable food sources for urban populations, particularly in communities considered “food deserts” due to a lack of access to nutritious affordable food. In addition to a strong public education stream, particularly for youth, this project will also provide food directly to 30-40 families and 10-15 autonomy-reduced individuals by supplying fresh vegetables to Santropol Roulant’s weekly Fresh Basket program. The project will also provide food to an additional 150-200 people by supplying Santropol Roulant’s meals-on-wheels kitchen and weekly market stand.