Kitchen Program

Program participants getting together to make tasty goods in the kitchen

The kitchen program is a vibrant area of the farm that operated with 5-7 participants and the assistance of 30 – 60 volunteers and staff support all lead by our talented kitchen manager Star Maracle.  Nutritional and cooking skills are learned during the daily preparation and service of the farm lunch.  Staff, participants and the general public come together to enjoy a hot meal Monday-Friday at 12:30; Community members wishing to join us are welcome. We ask for a suggested donation of $5 per person and for you to call Maria in the main office at 746-4204 by 10:00 am to hold a spot for you.

The kitchen program also works closely with other areas of the farm to create a sustainable operation.  Fresh produce and eggs from the farm are used and served in the daily Farm lunches when in season.  In addition vegetable peelings from the kitchen are contributed to the farms compost pile and table scraps turn into a tasty snack for the farm’s pigs.

Working in the kitchens at Providence

Major renovations to the Providence House kitchen were completed during the summer of 2005. We’re thankful for the partnerships that have enabled us to construct this kitchen, which include Farm Folk/City Folk and the Feast of Fields, which provided the initial $18,000 of funding to start the project. A total of $130,000 was fundraised through several grants and funding partners. The planning and design for the kitchen was greatly assisted by a volunteer planning group from the community, which included Bill Jones, Mara Jernigan, James Barber – ‘The Urban Peasant’, John Salmen, Denis Berger and several members of the Board of Directors and staff from the farm.  More recently the yearly James Barber Fundraiser (held in the fall of each year) has contributed ongoing funds to assist in upgrades to the booth the indoor kitchen and the outside facilities.Star 002

The kitchen crew would like to extend a big “Thanks” to all the local chefs and volunteers that assist in the running of this valuable program at the farm.

Please consider making a donation to support the Kitchen Program at Providence Farm



Segues Program

Two participants in the Segues ProgramThe Segues program provides opportunities for 10 men with different abilities and gifts. They willingly work around the farm as well as enjoy the various activities and opportunities that the farm provides.

Monday mornings will find them starting their week with a rousing sing-along with members of the Greenways program. On Wednesday afternoons the men enjoy time in the Arts-at-the-Farm studio where they produce some very creative work.

Another Segues participantAt other times the Segues crews can be found on duty around the farm working on animal husbandry, market gardening, landscaping & maintaining flower beds, repairs to allotment gardens and fencing, and seasonal farm chores.

The Segues Crew: A talented group who are always taking on new challenges.


Small Engine Repair & Maintenance Shop

The people at the Providence Small Engine Repair & Maintenance Shop work on the bulk of the small equipment on the farm and on equipment from customers in the community.

The shop provides a safe, positive environment for participants to learn how to repair small equipment. We encourage active involvement in all areas. People gain confidence through this activity as they gain new skills, ownership and the flush of success when equipment comes to life again.

The shop is located in the McKinnon Building, next to the Farm Store.

Animal Husbandry

Mother duck and her baby duckling

Momma and baby duck

Collecting the eggs, feeding the sheep, cleaning the coop: these chores help to set the daily rhythm of farm life. We have a small flock sheep, Dolly and Molly, our resident donkeys, 4 alpacas, and we’ve just added some goats to the mix.

We also have 100 laying hens that produce magnificent eggs for sale in our Farm Store. Our happy pigs are raised on garden scraps until they’re ready for slaughter.

Alpacas at Providence Farm

Our alpacas

Pigs and piglets at Providence Farm


Furniture Shoppe

A table being crafted at the Providence Furniture Shoppe

Finely crafted

Hands Helping Hands Help Themselves.

The Providence Farm Furniture Shop complements the Horticultural Training Centre by offering a range of woodworking opportunities for our participants. Here, participants learn the essentials of working with wood and are guided through the planning, building, finishing, marketing and sale of each project.

The projects can be as creative and detailed, or as routine and labour intensive, as each participant wants or needs. All levels of ability are welcome.

Furniture being constructed in our workshops

Care and attention to detail

Products are available through custom orders or through our General Store.

Drop by the store to see some samples or contact us for more information.

Market Gardens

FieldsOver 3 acres of organic market gardens are under cultivation at Providence – vegetables are grown to sell in the store, and at the farmer’s market – and to supply the daily soups that are served for lunch. Participants have the opportunity to be involved in all aspects of growing – from planning, to seeding, transplanting, weeding, harvesting, and making the soup!

More than just plants grow in our Gardens – people grow. In our gardens, people with varying abilities grow the vegetables, herbs, and flowers which we sell. By growing our plants together, we grow together – people grow in confidence and experience, their self esteem and self worth grow, and they blossom. Group activities promote socialization and allow participants to work together for a common goal. Energy and anxiety can be released through digging, hoeing and pruning.

Market Produce

We use Providence Farm Produce because our customers deserve the very best! Luke Harms, The Masthead Restaurant

General Store

Inside the General Store at Providence Farm (near Duncan, Cowichan)

Inside the General Store

The General Store is a hive of activity and the central gathering place for all that is produced at the farm. During the season, vegetables are brought in from the fields and market garden, along with fruit from the orchards, herbs and flowers from the perennial border, plants from the nursery and eggs from the ‘girls’. In the store, participants serve customers, order supplies, create displays, answer the phone and take messages; operate the cash register and do some of the janitorial chores.

On Fridays, many hands come together to harvest and prepare produce for the Saturday morning Farmer’s Market in downtown Duncan. The store stocks not only the farm’s harvest, but also the creative handiwork produced in the Furniture Shop, the Loom Room and the Welding Shop. The unique products of these various enterprises have been admired both by local patrons and people from around the world who have come to visit the farm.

Visitors eager to learn more about Providence Farm gather in the store to meet its people and hear its story. They may purchase some fresh produce or a souvenir, and sit on the patio outside the General Store and enjoy the ambience of the farm.

Current Store Hours:
Tuesday to Saturday 10am until 5pm
Closed Sunday and Monday

The Nursery and Greenhouse

The nursery at Providence Farm, Duncan

Our nursery

In Full Bloom

In Full Bloom

In the summer of 2004, a timber framing workshop kicked off the construction of our new nursery. With financial support from the Vancouver Foundation, the new 5000 square foot greenhouses were also completed at that time.

Come and enjoy this wonderful space, and browse for plants or just soak in the surroundings. These facilities are used for growing annuals, perennials, and herbs –grown for public sales.

The nursery provides a great place to suit individual needs, including training, education and therapeutic opportunities to grow. The nursery activities support individuals with learning disabilities, mental health issues, sensory or physical disabilities or who are in rehabilitation. Participants work with horticultural therapists and volunteers progressing at their own pace to achieve goals. The training programs are appropriate for all abilities, and focus on improving confidence, social interaction, horticultural skills and physical ability.

The Nursery is now open Monday & Tuesday 10am until 3pm and Wednesday to Sunday 10am until 5pm.


The Nursery Phone Number: 250-597-1745  Email:


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