Eating Together nurtures
spontaneous, diverse communities of students who care for each other and the food they eat.

Let’s eat our way through this,

The Communal Lunch Project highlights the social function of food to address two issues disproportionately represented in the post-secondary student population: food insecurity and social isolation. Grounded in performance theory and food security theory, the project proposes another way of doing lunch on campus.

We believe that an inclusive, healthy, and sustainable food culture is one that includes opportunities for skill-building, knowledge production, local healthy food, and communal eating – it’s one that builds a culture of care. It is well-established that physical and mental health is supported by healthy eating habits. But our current campus food culture makes it difficult for students to prioritize eating as a nourishing pause during their busy days. Please read more here.

Our virtual cook-along program aims to provide access to local ingredients and space for students to connect with each other and develop food knowledge when they can’t be on campus. Our in-person campus community kitchen program launches in July 2022.

The project is funded by NSERC’s College and Community Social Innovation Fund. It is in partnership with Meal Exchange and in collaboration with Joshna Maharaj and has support from George Brown College’s Student Life.

Meet our Team

Brittany Maguire

PA Coordinator

Brittany is the Program Manager for Meal Exchange and is passionate about food security, local food, and community and youth engagement in building more just and sustainable food systems.

Top three spices:
fresh basil, oregano, and chili

Jennifer Mitsche

Project Director

Jennifer is a professor of English & Communications at George Brown College and the founder of the Communal Lunch Project. She is interested in the social function of food and the power of people eating together.

Top Three Spices:
Cumin, chilli, and cinnamon!

Joshna Maharaj

Project Collaborator

Joshna is a chef, author & activist who cares a lot about people’s relationship with food. She works to rebuild food systems in public institutions putting hospitality and sustainability as a top priority.

Favourite Kitchen Tool/Gadget:

My well-seasoned cast iron pan!

Blair Smith

Marketing Strategist

Blair is a professor of practice in modern marketing at George Brown College. He believes that marketing is an essential literacy for the 21st century and is on a mission to develop more confident modern marketers.

Favourite Kitchen Tool: 
Oyster knife

Stephanie Lee

Project Assistant/Social Media Coordinator

Stephanie (she/her) is a Digital Media Marketing graduate from George Brown College. She is fascinated by the connections between food, culture and social bonds. 

Top three spices:
Chinese Five Spice, Cinnamon, Montreal Steak Spice

Aasreen Sood

Project Assistant

Aasreen is a Business Administration student at George Brown College. She is passionate about cooking as it allows her to try out new things and make a connection with other individuals.

Most underrated veggie:
Red pepper

Isabel Teramura

Project Assistant

Isabel Teramura (they/them) is a fifth-year student of Contemporary Studies at University of King’s College, interested in the intersection between food, social justice, and urban design.

Favourite kitchen gadget:
a nice sharp paring knife!

Bronwyn Heerspink

Project Assistant

Bronwyn is an Honours Political Science student at the University of Regina who works to improve civic engagement in her community. She is interested in how public policy can address Canada’s food security crisis.

Top Three Spices:
Cumin - Za’atar - Cardamom

Amber Saville

Project Assistant

Amber is a Gender and Women’s Studies student at Lakehead University. She is passionate about the topic of food security in relation to diet culture and looking at how suggested diet practices are not always sustainable or accessible.

Favourite kitchen tool/gadget:
Slow cooker

Two students on a farm

Meal Exchange

Meal Exchange is a nationally registered charity that has inspired students to create change through food for over 25 years. By empowering students and creating spaces for student voices to be heard, facilitating collaboration and supporting campuses in creating innovative solutions, Meal Exchange acts as a catalyst to increase access to good food on campuses across the country.

Learn more about Meal Exchange here:

Peerconnect Community is a student peer support service that connects George Brown students to resources and information and with each other. Under the three pillars of Well-Being, Inclusion and Good Food, Peerconnect offers a range of programs, events, and workshops aimed at supporting students in their personal and academic lives. See @gbcpeerconnect on IG for more information.