Norwich FarmShare - #fundourfarm

We need your help to set up infrastructure on our two new growing sites and to buy equipment for producing beautiful chemical-free veg.

£4,440 raised of £25,000 target 18 %
63 supporters 22 days left
This project will only be funded if at least £25,000 is pledged by 11:59pm 11th December 2017

News update! We've just heard that we've been approved for a match funding award from the Santander Changemaker fund. This is a huge boost to our campaign - it means when we hit 50% of our target (£12,500), they will match fund the rest to get us over the finishing line. Thank you Santander! 

Our story
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Norwich FarmShare produces local, seasonal, chemical-free veg with and for the community. We are an eco-award winning not-for-profit cooperative, modelling sustainable urban food supply in Norwich. We've been doing this for seven years now - reconnecting with nature,  learning together... and having lots of fun while we're at it. 

In 2016 we lost our rented growing land, and we have since secured two new plots. We need funds to become fully operational on our city centre site, and to begin setting up our second, main growing site. These funds will enable us to buy a van, buy and repair equipment, create sheltered areas for storage and volunteers, install a compost loo, and more (read on for details). 

Our vision is for a fairer, healthier food system. It's about food security for our communities and our children. And it's about caring for each other and our precious planet. Together we can make it happen.

"I love knowing that my veg has come from just down the road. There's also a real sense of community and solidarity - when FarmShare people get together, you get the feeling it really is possible to change our food system for the better." - Olivia Hanks, FarmShare member 


Our new sites at Valpy Avenue and Whitlingham Nurseries

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After a long search, we have now signed a contract for a new site at Valpy Avenue allotments - two miles north of the city centre in Norwich, and we are in the process of setting this up. As well as growing delicious veg, we'll be focusing our educational and community engagement work here. We also have plans to develop additional growing capacity and opportunities for organic horticultural training on a beautiful three-acre, south facing, second site at Whitlingham.


What we need to move forward

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A £10,000 Big Lottery grant is paying for some of the setup costs for our new site at Valpy Avenue. We now need to raise further funds to enable us to become fully operational. With your help we would be able to: 

  • Purchase or hire equipment to clear couch grass
  • Buy a van to deliver produce to our distribution centre
  • Hold a workshop to build a pizza oven for social events, groups and workshops
  • Building a shelter for volunteers and for educational groups
  • Install and customise pre-built shed to use as a packing area
  • Install a compost loo
  • Installing a pond liner
  • Install mouse-proof storage for produce
  • Print leaflets and flyers

We will also be able to begin setting up our second site at Whitlingham including: 

  • Transporting heavy equipment
  • Purchasing green manure
  • Installing and furnishing a volunteer shelter


A note about rewards

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We're really pleased to be able to offer a range of different kinds of rewards from our members and supporters, as well as some small tokens of our heartfelt thanks to everyone who makes a pledge.  We have more exciting offers coming in, and will be adding them as we go along. 

Please note that we will be asking all Norfolk and Suffolk based pledgers to collect their rewards (if it is a physical object) from a central Norwich location. We will happily post cards, calendars and other items (except tote bags) to people outside the region. 

We're planning to have the rewards ready to go as soon as we close the campaign on 8 December - so you can use them for Christmas presents. All the experience based rewards (music lessons, places on courses, etc) will be offered in the Norfolk area, and will come in the form of a voucher - which you can give as a gift if you wish. 


More about us

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Working co-operatively with local agroecological farmers and growers, we are part of a global network of small-scale growing projects - a dynamic and growing movement commonly referred to as Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). Our vision is to support food systems that educate, connect and empower local communities to be healthier and more resilient, to be rooted to the land and to each other, and to experience a direct relationship with how our food is produced. 

Over the last seven years some 440 Norwich residents have been part of our growing community - learning about ecologically sensitive methods, enjoying and celebrating local seasonal food, and sharing knowledge and expertise.  We have also offered volunteering, educational and social events to our members and to the wider public – including schools, youth groups and other disadvantaged groups - and we hope to do much more of this in the future.

Since losing our growing site in Postwick in 2016, we have been working with local organic producers to continue to provide delicious, fresh, chemical-free produce for our members each week. 

“The vegetables I receive from FarmShare form the main staple of my weekly shopping and I find it really important to not only know where this food comes from but to have a direct hand in helping to grow it and to see the produce change as the seasons pass. The Farmshare community is brilliant too. I have made some lifelong friendships since I joined and it has inspired me to make some positive life changes.” - Owen Bushell, FarmShare member


More about our plans for the future

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With the right support, we are in a strong position to develop our community and put our strategic objectives into action.  As well as increasing our capacity to produce vegetables for our members, and improving the sustainability and viability of our growing methods, our long term plans include:  

  • Tackling social isolation by providing educational and social activities, and a sense of community purpose. 
  • Developing our volunteer engagement, recruitment and training programme.
  • Promoting the many preventative and restorative health benefits resulting from outdoors, nature-based activities.  
  • Improving our capacity to work collaboratively with local community groups and statutory agencies.
  • Increasing our involvement within local networks and structures, to advance awareness of community-based agriculture and its contribution to local sustainable development goals.
  • Innovating new models and standards of best practice for CSA organisations in Norwich, and across multi-district and national networks.

“I love FarmShare and it is really important to me. I love having a connection to the food I eat, knowing that my tasty salad came from down the road, grown by people I love and supported by my community. I have volunteered for FarmShare, and it's one of my favourite things to do. A lot of my friends have been made through Farmshare. What a beautiful project!” - Holly Parker-Jervis, FarmShare member

Thanks
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Thanks to our wonderful project team for setting up and delivering this campaign. Thanks to all our members and supporters, to those who have pledged (and those who will do so in the coming weeks), and those who have offered fantastic rewards. 

Special thanks to Matt Robinson for a beautiful campaign video that has made us all proud - www.mattjamesrobinson.com | vimeo.com/matthewrobinsonfilm and to James Frost for the soundtrack www.jamesfrostmusic.com. 

Norwich FarmShare - A Growing Community


#NorwichFarmShare  #fundourfarm  #communityagriculture

www.norwichfarmshare.co.uk