U of G’s Arrell Food Institute is hiring a former local food bank administrator

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The longtime manager of the Guelph Food Bank has moved into a new role at the University of Guelph.

Pauline Cripps has been hired as community food director after nearly a decade working as an administrator at the local food bank.

Her goals include supporting food initiatives in Wellington County and making food accessible, especially to students.

She said she is looking forward to bringing her outside knowledge and hands-on experience gained in her previous job to the university.

“I really believe that when we share resources and build more collaborative structures and networks, we greatly increase our capacity and our sustainability and I think that’s really important, and I look forward to contributing to that,” Cripps said.

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The role will support liaison and coordination between food organizations in the region, lead existing food projects and support fundraising activities.

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Cripps will continue some of the work she started while working at the food bank, including the Our Food Future project and the Nutritious Foods Workstream.

Although the new job comes with a learning curve, Cripps said her previous role helped prepare her for this gig.

“It was in that role and the opportunity through that role to meet people who work in that sector or adjacent sectors and food systems in general that really helped me shape that understanding and learn a lot more about what those systems entail . ” she said.

She said the shift has been quite significant from the front lines of a food access organization.

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Cripps added that she can still maintain her connections with the food bank to help them and vice versa.

While working at the Arrell Food Institute (AFI), she said she also hopes to build on the networks and relationships she has been able to build over the years, along with seeing the province’s expansions as it becomes more connected touches with Guelph and builds on their shared resources.

So far, Cripps said the new role has been incredible.

“The team at AFI was amazing,” she said.

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“I couldn’t wish for better colleagues. I feel very privileged to spend this time with them and have these people to work with and exchange ideas.”

Cripps started as a volunteer at the food bank before becoming a full-time employee. Her job at AFI is a two-year contract.

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