The Garden for Wellbeing: Building Community Pathways Within UM

Nestled between the Red River and Freedman Crescent, the Garden for Wellbeing will be a unique, accessible and inclusive landscape that nurtures community mental health and wellbeing on the Fort Garry Campus.

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Raven Medicine Cloud

The Raven Medicine Cloud project is a story map focused on select landscape elements currently found along UM riverbank forests. The present-day University of Manitoba Fort Garry campus is situated within the Red River Settlement, established in 1811-12, that gave way to the traditional homeland of the Métis Nation.

Take the Virtual Tour

Sustainability Walking Map

Take a self-guided tour and learn about sustainability features on Fort Garry campus. Walk the urban forest tour, learn about green buildings on campus, locate your nearest bike parking options, and find out where to dispose of waste.

Explore the Map

Gardening with Purpose

In 2023 the Office of Sustainability, Human Resources, Student Wellness and Spiritual Care launched Gardening with Purpose to create a sense of community and interaction with the land and nature. The program encourages UM community members to support the growth of annual and perennial plants by tending to the raised garden bed located between the Buller Greenhouse and the Biological Sciences Building.

Interested in volunteering to water and weed the garden bed or learn about special events? Contact us.

Two smiling people crouched down in a field picking produce from a garden.

Sustainable food options on campus

  • Campo food service area in University Centre
    Photo by UM Dining Services


    The majority of UM's food service providers offer sustainable meal options for students and staff.

    Learn more about eating on campus

  • Fair Trade sign on a table at the Bannatyne campus.

    Fair trade food products 

    UM's Bannatyne campus is a designated fair trade campus, meaning that all coffee and tea served on campus is fair trade. UM Dining Services offers a large selection of fair trade coffees, teas and chocolates at both campus locations. 

    Learn more about our fair trade Bannatyne campus

Fair Trade

In 2018, the UM Bannatyne Campus was designated Canada’s 33rd Fair Trade Campus. Today, it is the only designated campus in Winnipeg.


Sustainable food production on campus

UM’s two gardens demonstrate the benefits of on-campus food production:

  • Foster community around environmental, ecological and food security issues and awareness
  • Promote local, agro-ecological food production by producing food in a sustainable manner, without the use of pesticides, chemicals or genetically modified plants 
  • Provide students, faculty and staff an opportunity to apply classroom knowledge, and integrate food production experience into academic research and course activity 
  • Increase biodiversity and sustainability, such as providing habitat and food for beneficial organisms (such as butterflies, bees and birds, etc.) 
  • Provide opportunity to address food access by providing local, fresh foods to community members, campus food banks and food
  • The permaculture garden features flowers and a brick archway.
  • UM Permaculture Garden

    A permaculture garden is a way to organize food-producing systems that work with nature with minimal harmful impact on surrounding ecosystems.

    The UM permaculture garden uses perennial plants that work in concert to produce food and increase the health and vitality of the site. This student-run project features apples, raspberries, strawberries, asparagus and a variety of native Manitoba pollinator plants.

    Visit the UM Permaculture Garden (Google Maps)

  • Rainbow Gardens

    A group of new immigrants started this garden in 2008, assisted by Knox United Church in collaboration with the City of Winnipeg and University of Manitoba.

    The two-acre plot is now managed by the Refugee Immigrant Farming & Integration in Manitoba Inc. (RIFIM) and feeds new immigrant families. 

    UM provides water and maintenance support and helps find volunteers to assist gardeners during the growing season. Contact us if you are interested in helping out.

    Visit the Rainbow Gardens (Google Maps)

  • A large group of people huddle together for a photo holding a sign got the Rainbow Garden.
  • A group of six people stand side by side for a photo in front of a garden, one person holds a long garden hose.
  • Transformative changes

    Students are making transformative changes in their campuses and community food systems. They are creating socially and ecologically conscious food offerings, collaborating with food service providers to make meaningful connections with local farmers and providing space for community organizations to open their hearts, minds and kitchens to opportunity. 

    There is still much work to be done. There are more gardens to be grown, more local farmers to support and more stories to share. We invite you to be a part of the solution, contact us to get involved.

Sustainable Food Systems Research Group

The Food Systems Research Group is an umbrella group fostering the creation of multi/trans-disciplinary collaborative research to advance the UM signature research theme of Safe, Healthy, Just and Sustainable Food Systems.

In March 2015, the Campus Food Strategy Group, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, Faculty of Arts, National Centre for Livestock and the Environment, Natural Resources Institute and the Office of Sustainability collaborated to host the Sustainable Food Systems Workshop. 

The workshop brought students, faculty and staff from various disciplines together to discuss the food system at UM, build partnerships and collaborate on issues that impact the campus food system. 

Food and curriculum

UM offers undergraduate and graduate courses that focus on safe, healthy, just and sustainable food systems. The courses represent a number of departments and disciplines and a variety of course levels and minimum prerequisites.