Growing kai

Across the motu, Salvation Army foodbanks are expanding their food response to offer new food-based wrap-arounds alongside traditional food parcels. These new food supports are strengths-based and help build knowledge, skills, access and connection, empowering whānau to move from dependence to a place of greater resilience, sovereignty and security. 

We’ve defined seven areas of food security support that Salvation Army Community Ministries can offer. These are

  • Choosing kai
  • Cooking kai
  • Growing kai
  • Sharing kai
  • Buying kai
  • Connecting with kai
  • Partnering around kai

Because food insecurity is different in every community, our foodbanks are empowered to adopt the food security initiatives that best meet the unique needs of their community and match their own resources. This flexible approach helps target our resources to best effect and provides a great opportunity for partnering with other community organisations. From Kaitaia to Invercargill you’ll see different expressions of food security at Salvation Army foodbanks. In this video you can see how our Whangarei team is helping strengthen food security for whānau and their community..

You can help our Community Ministries  implement or expand food security programmes in their Community by making a donation through their landing page.


  • Hosting community gardens
  • Developing productive gardens at Salvation Army Community Ministries and facilities
  • Encouraging home garden development through planters, tubs and seedlings 

Growing your own food makes an important contribution to food security and sovereignty empowering whānau to choose and actively invest in the food they consume or share with others. Gardening provides a cost-effective way to source nutritious food, particularly when grown from seed, and also offers additional benefits in terms of physical activity, emotional wellbeing, social connection, cultural connection, education and more. 

Salvation Army Community Ministries  are helping whānau and communities to grow their own kai by providing materials and workshops to encourage home growing. Initiatives cater for a range of living situations and include garden planter boxes for larger sites and more settled whānau, through to tubs designed for small spaces which are easy to transport to new homes. 

Salvation Army Community Ministries are incorporating productive fruit trees and gardens wherever possible enabling produce to be grown and harvested for sharing through Foodbank and pātaka kai. In some locations, such as Alexandra, we host gardens that are a vital community food security resource supporting numerous groups with fruit, vegetables, honey, flax and more.