Help us to use growing and good food to tackle loneliness and foster intergenerational relationships!
We are looking to bring together parents, their toddlers and elders on to a farm to garden, cook food, share lunches and build community. At the end of all that our members will take home a small veg box of our organic produce every week.
Every weekday we want to get five parents, five toddlers and three or four elders out on to the farm. They will spend a couple of hours in the morning helping out on the farm with watering, transplanting, starting off seeds, tending to our small livestock and picking and prepping produce. We will then pick food for lunch, prepare it together and sit down as a community to break bread together.
We want to build five small individual communities on each day of the week so will be inviting people to come along on the same day every week therefore ensuring that they build lasting relatonships with their fellow attendees.
After we've eaten, at the end of each session, each member will leave with a small veg box of our produce.
Who are we?
He is Tim, a stay at home dad and recent graduate of a masters in mechanical engineering whose change of career trajectory is driven by a passion for seeing children brought into right relationship with nature and with communities. She is Noa, a toddler who is obsessed with pandas, dogs and constantly opening the fridge to eat butter with her hands.
Why are we doing this?
For us it is important that children engage with elders as there is wealth of wisdom waiting to be passed down to them. Bringing together elders and children not only addresses that issue but starts to tackle loneliness, as we know that there is a high percentage of both older people and stay at home parents who are socially isolated.
We will be running the farm based on gift economy principles. We will be seeking a payment for the services that we are offering but, apart from annual membership, we will not demand a payment. We are aware that reaching out to people who are lonely is made harder by the fact that they are often hard to reach, be that physically or financially. So we will be open to discussions with anyone who wishes to join but feels that they can not guarantee that they can afford it every week.
An annual membership normally costs £30, we have a reward to get one for £25(!), and this covers admin costs, gives us a small steady financial income for every member to allow us to operate in the gift, and, as a community farm building communities we aren't open to anyone to wander on to the farm whilst we are hosting toddlers and vulnerable adults, so that ensures that every other member knows that we have a process that soft vets everyone engaging in the project.
Why are we crowdfunding?
We are crowdfunding to turn an overgrown plot of Bristol City Council land into a productive market garden. The council have already granted us a long lease and are preparing the contract for us to sign as we crowdfund! The money we are raising will go towards.
- A polytunnel - a large brand new polytunnel that not only allows us to grow plants under cover but doubles as shelter for changing a toddler, eating together on rainy days and sheltering from typical British weather.
- Compost for our no dig beds - we are aiming to spread a lot of compost, partly to use no dig principles, partly as we want some of the space to be made up of raised beds to be wheelchair friendly.
- A composting toilet - need we say more!
- A wide range of tools - enough so that if everyone wants to work cooperatively on the task they can!
- The infrastructure for small backyard animals - free range doesn't mean they get to come home and sleep in my bed!
We are aiming to run this venture as a not-for-profit social enterprise and will be soon submitting the governance documents to incorporate as a community interest company (CIC). What that means in effect is that there will be an asset lock, so in the case of us winding down we transfer our assets to a registered charity, and that we will be reinvesting all our profits either back into the company or the local community.
If you can help us out by donating to us not only will you know that you are helping our project take it's first steps to tackle loneliness and help bring together people to form multi-generational communities.
Joining the farm as a member is unfortunately not a guarantee that you will be able to be involved in the programme we wish to run every day, that is dependent upon the level of interest that we have. However, it does entitle you to come on any of our Open Days, every Saturday and know that if by only visiting once a week, once a fortnight, or once a year you are still helping and being part of a fantastic project.
We are also offering a potted tomato guild, which is a large pot with a tomato staked in the centre and salad plants growing around it that, although not enough to keep everyone in salad over a summer will be a nice addition to a balcony or patio.
If you name a chicken or a duck we will provide you with a monthly newsletter emailed to you to let you know how the little fella is getting along.
If you want to come to out launch party it will be in June on a Saturday with dishes prepared from vegetables picked from the farm and a large BBQ on offer, with music to follow later on in the evening.
And if you want to hit the real jackpot we will be opening up the farm to eight lucky people for three three course meal cooked completely with vegetables from the farm and organic meat from a local supplier. There are only five of these up for grabs so either the first Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or Friday of July, August and September. Not only will you be helping out a great cause but offering your friends a farily unique experience with a 3 course meal set in the summer sun in the midst of a blooming market garden.
However, if all you want to do is get a high five and cuddle a cute animal then please donate all the same. Any amount is greatefully recieved.