Food Security Specialist – Part Time

Job Summary: For over 30 years, Aunt Leah’s place has helped prevent children in foster care from becoming homeless and mothers in need from losing custody of their children. To support them on their journey to self-sufficiency, we provide supported housing, job training and coaching on essential life skills. We believe that youth in and from government care should have similar supports akin to their parented peers. Food Security is a rising concern for our youth and learning how to provide nutritious meals on a budget for themselves and their families is a crucial skill in their pathway to independence. Aunt Leah’s Food Security program is designed to replicate what families do for their teenagers and young adults to prepare them for independence as well as inspire to prepare meals from natural ingredients that are delicious, affordable, and nutritious.

This role will maintain the Aunt Leah’s Food Security initiatives through leveraging pre-existing relationships in order to serve food insecure populations. This role will also provide drop-in support to participants who are seeking to learn cooking/meal preparation skills to foster their life skills development.

Reports To: Employment and Lifeskills Program Manager



  • 2 to 3 years of relevant experience working in a kitchen environment preparing and cooking meals
  • 1 year of experience instructing in food preparation
  • Experience preparing nutritious meal plans for all age groups, particularly youth and children
  • A relevant combination of education and experience
  • Satisfactory Criminal Record Check
  • A valid BC driver’s license and access to a vehicle
  • Valid Food Safe Certification
  • Standard First Aid or willingness to obtain
  • Knowledge of WHMIS
  • Non-Violent Crisis Intervention or willingness to obtain
  • Trauma Informed Awareness
  • Awareness & understanding around the impact on youth from trauma and inter-generational trauma resulting from colonial policies
  • Cultural Sensitivity and Awareness
  • Agrees and adheres to the Society’s Code of Ethics
  • Must be willing to travel to various locations within Metro Vancouver


Knowledge, Skills & Abilities (KSA):

  • Strong oral and written communication
  • Strong ability to work independently and team building skills
  • Empathy and compassion towards people with multiple barriers
  • Ability to identify barriers to food security and appropriately address them, including receiving, providing and responding to feedback
  • Ability to teach and mentor food security skills, including how to buy food on a budget, read nutrition labels of food items, meal-planning, and safe preparation & cooking practices
  • Flexibility, reliability and punctuality
  • Conflict resolution skills
  • Excellent organizational, kitchen management, and time management skills, including the ability to manage multiple priorities
  • Health and nutrition menu planning
  • Budgeting food costs
  • Ability to work collaboratively with other program staff
  • Ability to act, engage and support youth through a trauma informed lens, or be willing to learn
  • You are passionate about the Organization’s mission and understand the current and historical context of the child welfare system in relation to colonization


Key Duties and Responsibilities:

Aunt Leah’s Food Security Initiatives

  • Oversee volunteers to run Wednesday meals at New West Office
  • Maintain effective partnerships with food suppliers and donors
  • Manage and contain food deliveries and food donated to Aunt Leah’s
  • Maintain the New Westminster office kitchen and donation cupboards
  • Manage supplies inventory for food donations including shopping and delivery
  • Liaise with the Link team to ensure the food cupboard at Seymour office is replenished


Training – Life Skills Support, Cooking & Meal Preparation

  • Set up support guidelines, menu planning and relevant curriculum design that teaches essential cooking skills and considers possible budgeting constraints for participants
  • Encourage participants by providing healthy food choice recommendations as outlined in the Canadian Food Guide
  • Communicate with students and moms in a sensitive manner to provide them with a positive learning experience and a safe and secure learning environment
  • Maintain relationships with residential and life-skills programs at Aunt Leah’s
  • Provide staff and participants orientations for the program
  • Provide food by planning, shopping, cooking, and delivering food for the program



  • Complete the necessary documentation for CARF standards/reporting, outcome reports & funder reports
  • Track attendance for Wednesday meals and maintain notes for drop-in support
  • Enter and track program information on OTIS database system
  • Document any incidents using the Critical Incident Report template



  • Handle petty cash for the program
  • Prepare monthly financial food cost report
  • Maintain reasonable food cost budget
  • Purchase all food supplies for the program


Health and Safety:

  • Ensure that the program is maintained to Society standards, according to the policies and procedures manual by ensuring programing environment is clean, safe and secure
  • Conduct regular kitchen safety orientations with staff and participants
  • Check safety devices in the kitchens
  • Ensure that staff and participants are knowledgeable of all fire exit routes
  • Ensure proper lifting techniques & procedures are followed
  • Participate in the annual review of Aunt Leah’s Health and Safety Policy and Procedures



  • Using effective communication skills build trust and rapport and maintain effective working relationships with participants and staff to allow for the transfer of required information, and promote a co-operative and productive work environment.
  • Attend relevant team meetings as requested and monthly Staff Development
  • Seek direction from supervisor in crisis situations as appropriate
  • Follow Aunt Leah’s Policies and Procedures


Special Events Meal Planning

  • Plan and organize meals for special events when approved by supervisor
  • Develop a list of reliable caterers



  • Ensures information about participants in the program is kept strictly confidential both internally and externally
  • Ensures all written material is locked in the office and all phone calls regarding participants take place in the office
  • Follows Aunt Leah’s Society Policies and Procedures and Aunt Leah’s Code of Ethics (includes Child and Youth Care Association of BC Code of Ethics, Aunt Leah’s Privacy Policy, BC Rights of Youth in care & UN Rights of the Child)


Physical Demands:

  • This position requires some lifting and/or carrying of 20 to 50 lbs. or heavier items in a safe manner
  • Work is performed generally in a kitchen environment at the New Westminster office
  • Part-time regular position (22.5 hours a week) – 3 days a week including Wednesdays
  • Perform other related duties, as assigned by the supervisor, that do not affect the nature of the work


COVID-19 Vaccination Policy: As of January 4, 2022, Aunt Leah’s Place has implemented a COVID-19 Vaccination policy. Aunt Leah’s Place strongly encourages all employees to be fully vaccinated (2 doses) for COVID-19. Rather than a mandatory vaccine policy, we have implemented a voluntary disclosure of vaccination. Employees will fill out a “voluntary disclosure” form indicating their vaccination status. Employees that do not wish to voluntarily disclose their vaccination status will be considered unvaccinated for operational planning purposes. The voluntary disclosure form will be included in the hiring process.

We offer: A comprehensive benefits package that includes: dental, extended health care including vision care and prescription, RRSP matching, generous vacation, and personal time package, and an employee discount at our Thrift Store.

Salary: Commensurate with qualifications

To apply: Please send your resume and cover letter with salary expectation, quoting Food Security Specialist in the subject line, to [email protected] Short listed candidates will be contacted for interviews. Thank you for your interest in joining Aunt Leah’s Independent Life Skills Society!

We encourage qualified people of all gender expressions and identities, sexual orientations, visible minorities, Indigenous persons, and persons with disabilities to apply if you are interested in supporting our mission and mandate and like what we have to offer.


Every dollar counts

Your support helps kids in foster care and young mothers
achieve a better future.