East Van Jam’s Artist Series was launched in 2021 when Natalie Ferrari Morton, owner of the local artisan company, East Van Jam, was inspired to create a series of jams that “celebrates the varied communities that make East Vancouver so dynamic.” Ferrari Morton asked local women artists if they would like to design labels for these jams each reflecting the artist’s own cultural heritage. East Van Jam would give $1 from the sale of each jar to the artist’s charity of choice. Artist Sandeep Johal said yes and she chose EVA BC for the charity she’d like to support.
Sandeep Johal’s labels appear on a jam named Blueberry & Apple spread with rose and cardamom. The jam was created with rosewater, cardamom, and blueberries for a blend that acknowledges the culture of the large community of South Asian blueberry farmers in the Fraser Valley.
Johal says of her design, “I wanted to do a figurative image, a portrait of a woman, reflecting it is a woman-owned business and all the people in the artist series are women. And domestic labour is largely done by women and so I wanted to focus on that.”
Her labels include images of roses for the rosewater, along with apples, blueberries, and cardamom pods.
“It was super fun,” Johal recalls, “I had friends who were going to the craft fairs to pick up my jam, sending me pictures and I was taking my son to see his mom’s jam — just that public facing excitement. And I am always happy to support local makers, small businesses and any kind of craft and artisanal market.”
When Johal was asked to name a charity to support, EVA BC felt like an obvious choice for her.
“A lot of my work revolves around men’s violence against women and telling women’s story from the South Asian community here and globally. It is such a borderless problem, so I wanted to give the money to an organization that is anti-violence and supports women. I read EVA BC’s mission statement, read about your services and I felt like it was an all-encompassing holistic approach and that you support a lot of other organizations.”
EVA BC channels donations into our work to support member programs and prevent gender-based violence. We also encourage donors to provide direct support to programs in their communities.
Ferrari Morton started East Van Jam in 2013 while home with small children and teaching other moms how to make preserves. With a lot of demand to sell her low sugar jams, East Van Jam was born. This past October, Michelle Eng and Nicole Snidanko purchased the business from her, and they are keen to keep the artist series going.
“The [artist series] jams were really popular over the holidays, and we are now out of stock of each flavour,” says Eng. “But we are hoping to get them back into production soon. We plan to incorporate a food sustainability element too!” She pointed to recent news of a donation of apples from Food Stash Foundation, an organization with a mission to “prevent good food from going to waste and provide dignified food access to promote a thriving planet and a healthy community,” which could help them with another run of the series.
East Van Jam sells its products in many local small and large businesses and markets in the Vancouver area.
EVA BC accepts donations for its work to support its member programs and prevention initiatives, all with the goal of helping to end gender-based violence.
Please consider supporting your local anti-violence organization by donating, volunteering or getting involved. See our service directory to find anti-violence organizations in your community.