Interesting local baker becomes surprise supporter

Doug Ward, chair of the board of directors, Will Spencer of rND Bakery and Fundraising and Communications Manager Katherine Walraven enjoy a moment together at the McKeen Metro Glebe Pop-Up Market on April 27, 2014.

On April 27, a local market popped up in Ottawa, and Farm Radio International was given the opportunity to pop up in the community as well. The McKeen Metro Glebe Pop-Up Market was a first-time event, with 40 local vendors — bakeries, wineries, and more — visited by about 500 people.

Thanks to the McKeen family, Farm Radio International was the only non-profit organization exhibiting at the market. We really enjoyed sharing information about our work promoting local food production  across Africa with Ottawans interested in local food. The day was an opportunity to get the Farm Radio International name out — and it caught the eye of a generous local baker.

Will Spencer took an unlikely path to become a baker. In 2007 he completed his Ph.D in microbial physiology and genetics, and then began a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Ottawa in biochemistry. Today, he runs rND Bakery in Ottawa. rND Bakery supplies gluten-free bread to a variety of Ottawa stores, including McKeen Metro in the Glebe.

The mission of rND Bakery is to improve the taste and texture of gluten-free bread for those suffering from wheat intolerance, and to discover great-tasting vegan bread options as well. It is a challenging endeavor, but one that has met with great success. rND Bakery has recently added yeast-free oat and sorghum bagels to their list of breads.

When Will heard about Farm Radio International’s work, he generously decided to donate the day’s proceeds to us. The unexpected donation was a great ending to a day spent sharing our message in the community.

Many thanks to the McKeen Metro Glebe and to Will Spencer of rND Bakery for a wonderful day.

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