One of the referendum questions on the ballot this year asks students if they are in favour of increasing the portion of their student fees that goes toward the Campus Community Garden (CCG). Currently, full-time students pay $1.50 and part-time students pay $0.75. If the referendum passes, the fee would be raised by an additional $1.50 for full-time students and $0.75 for part-time students.
The Martlet spoke to the CCG Outreach Officer, Sydney Welsh, who explained that the CCG’s board of directors “identified the need for additional funding to meet the garden’s long-term goals.” Welsh is also the referendum’s official proponent.
The funding that the CCG is asking for would help them in their quest to integrate the garden into the curriculum for more UVic courses and host social events on campus, says Welsh. Additionally, the CCG would like to increase the number of students employed, improve the infrastructure of the garden itself, and make it more accessible.
The CCG already works with Civil Engineering students and hosts ES 200 classes to discuss sustainable food systems.
“The garden offers a unique opportunity to educate the community at UVic about urban agriculture, native plants, and food security in a very hands-on manner,” she says.
“While we feel that education is the most important aspect of the CCG’s initiatives, it also feels great to give fresh produce to our volunteers, students, and the food bank!”
Welsh encourages students to vote in favour of the CCG’s referendum because it supports sustainable agriculture and improving the campus community.
However, whether or not students decide to “Vote for Veggies,” Welsh encourages everyone to check out the garden or attend some of the free events hosted by the CCG.
“The garden is our favourite place on campus, and it might just end up being yours too!”
The UVSS board have officially endorsed the ‘yes’ side of the referendum.