organicARTS Mini Bus Appeal

by organicARTS in Exeter, Devon

We did it
On 1st April 2015 we successfully raised £7,892 with 110 supporters in 42 days

We are raising funds to purchase a new mini bus, to enable more people to benefit from our activities.

by organicARTS in Exeter, Devon

New stretch target

If we are luckly enough to get over funding, anything on top of what we need for the mini bus will contribute towards maintaining and developing our community garden throughout 2015. 


If you are short on time here is the summary!

organicARTS is charity that promotes the arts and rural issues through volunteering opportunities, educational visits & walks, classes, workshops, community projects, exhibitions and performances. We love being based at West Town Farm and are very lucky to have access to the farm, but not everyone is so privileged. We work with many different people including, on two days a week, groups of disadvantaged adults who volunteer in our community garden. We work with people with mental health issues, learning difficulties, physical disability, head injuries, recovering from drug and alcohol misuse and homeless people etc. Many people who we work with don’t have access to private transport and we are not accessible by public transport. So what is our problem? Our minibus is coming towards the end of its life and is increasingly unreliable and costly to repair. So far we have raised £22,500 of the £30,000 needed for a new one. The new minibus will provide essential transport for our existing groups but also extend the offer to a wider range of groups and organisations. Offering a unique service in the Exeter area, providing an opportunity to visit a working farm engaging in activities on the land and using natural materials in fresh air, for any groups or individuals who need to improve their physical and mental health.

Thank you so much for your interest and support, please help us by spreading the word!We would like to say a huge thank you to Kevin Clifford for helping us make our video!

www.organicarts.org.uk

 

 

Alistair says volunteering in our community gardenhelps to boost his mental health

For Ian, it gets him out of the house and into the community

 

  

For those who have a little longer here is our story...

 

Who are we?

organicARTS run a charitable arts and education centre at West Town Farm, a working organic farm on the outskirts of Exeter in Devon

See our short film here about some of the work we do. http://vimeo.com/40157399

Who do we work with?

We work with many different people including, on two days a week, groups of disadvantaged adults who volunteer in our community garden. We work with people with mental health issues, learning difficulties, physical disability, head injuries, recovering from drug and alcohol misuse and homeless people etc.

Photo: Clare HenryOur community garden then…

organicARTS began 11 years ago and we started work on the community garden in 2007 with a group of women who were recovering from mental illnesses. The first job was to clear the space which was head high in thistles, brambles and nettles. Then the farm lent us some pigs who dug the vegetable plot which we had to fence in to keep out the rampant Ide rabbits!

A milestone for our garden group happened at the end of 2008 when we were given a second hand minibus by RAG at the University of Exeter allowing us to bring more people out to the garden each day.

 

 

…and now

Now it is a thriving garden with amongst other things a large vegetable plot, a fruit cage, a poly tunnel, a pond, a self built shed, mushroom posts, trees, bees, shrubs and flowers, willow and dye plants. The volunteers cook a large pot of soup using the vegetables they grow for everyone on the farm on those days.

The garden is also used as an educational resource during many of our educational visits and as a place for workshops and is a favourite space for many during our open days.

 

What are the benefits?

The benefits of outdoor and creative activities are well documented for improving physical and mental health and well-being.

Working with our garden volunteers we see improvements in self-esteem, self-confidence, independent thinking and activity, their ability to care for themselves and others, knowledge of healthy food, how it grows and how to process it, learning new and transferable skills – site maintenance, cooking, creative activities, processing materials, respect for the countryside and the creatures and plants that live here, walking in all weathers, the ability to focus, social skills and the ability to create friendships which extend outside the project. All these culminate in an improved quality of life. There are also benefits to society in reduced costs to the tax payer through reduced use of the health service, social services, law enforcement and benefits.What else do we do?

We offer a unique service in the Exeter area, providing an opportunity to visit a working farm engaging in activities on the land and using natural materials in fresh air. The work we do involves learning about food, farm and the environment and also creative activities using natural materials like clay, wood, wool, willow, charcoal, earth pigments and natural dyes. Activities can happen during educational visits, public and private workshops, walks, parties and away days. Some of the educational visits are with groups of low income families, elderly people and refugee groups as well as young people and school children of different abilities.What is our problem?

There is one thing which unites most of these people with those who work in the community garden, that is the lack of access to their own transport and unfortunately the farm is not on a public transport route.Sadly our current minibus is reaching the end of its useful life for us and we urgently need a new one, not only to continue our current work but also to expand and do more regular work with low income families, elderly people and refugee groups and to help community groups and schools to come and work with us through providing reasonably priced transport.We love and benefit from working at West Town Farm and we’re sure you love and benefit from visiting the countryside, it is something we often take for granted, so please help disadvantaged people do the same by contributing and you will benefit from some of the wonderful rewards we have on offer.Together we can make this happen, so far we have raised £22,500 and we need you to help us to raise the remaining £7,500, so that we can reach our goal of £30,000 needed for a new minibus.

Thank you so much for your interest and support, please help us by spreading the word to friends, family, colleagues and social media contacts.

Rewards

This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£5 or more

£5 Reward

Your name on our "Thank You Roll of Honour" on our website

£10 or more

31 of 100 claimed

£10 Reward

A hand crafted 'thank you' card and your name on our "Thank You Roll of Honour" on our website

£12 or more

8 of 10 claimed

£12 Reward

Bluebell Walk around the Farm with Nigel Pinhorn plus tea and cake Date: Wed 13th May 2015 from 2-3.30pm Plus Your name on our Thank You Roll of Honour on our website plus a hand crafted 'thank you' card.

£15 or more

8 of 8 claimed

£15 Reward

A basket of natural skin care and toiletry products made in Devon using completely natural, local and ethically sourced ingredients. http://tinyurl.com/ogajgej. Plus Your name on our Thank You Roll of Honour on our website plus a hand crafted card.

£20 or more

10 of 10 claimed

£20 Reward

A place on a lantern making workshops at organicARTS. Plus Your name on our Thank You Roll of Honour on our website plus a hand crafted card.

£20 or more

£20 Reward

4 free meals at Open Days at West Town Farm - comprising soup, cake and hot drink plus hand crafted card and entry on our list of supporters on web site

£40 or more

4 of 4 claimed

£40 Reward

House name or number created in mosaic to your specification. Plus Your name on our Thank You Roll of Honour on our website plus a hand crafted card.

£50 or more

4 of 4 claimed

£50 Reward

A full day basketry course with Deggie Belton using willow grown at organicARTS. Plus Your name on our Thank You Roll of Honour on our website plus a hand crafted card.

£50 or more

£50 Reward

Voucher for up to 16 people for a journey from Exeter to West Town farm and back in our new minibus to be used at any time plus hand crafted card and entry on our Hall of Fame on the web site

£95 or more

2 of 14 claimed

£95 Reward

A unique 'container' piece made from ball clay with West Town Farm clay and sand pressed into surface by artist Lucy Rockliffe. Plus Your name on our Thank You Roll of Honour on our website plus a hand crafted card.

£100 or more

4 of 50 claimed

£100 Reward

Your individual name painted on the back of the new mini bus. Plus Your name on our Thank You Roll of Honour on our website plus a hand crafted card.

£200 or more

0 of 5 claimed

£200 Reward

A trip for your school, nursery or community group in the new minibus for and including an educational visit to the farm. Plus Your name on our Thank You Roll of Honour on our website plus a hand crafted card.

£250 or more

1 of 1 claimed

£250 Reward

A 2 hour Farm Exploring birthday party for up to 15 children, including storytelling and a campfire with Kevin Cotter. Plus Your name on our Thank You Roll of Honour on our website plus a hand crafted card.

£260 or more

0 of 2 claimed

£260 Reward

A set of 3 unique 'container' pieces made from ball clay with West Town Farm clay and sand pressed into surface by artist Lucy Rockliffe. Plus Your name on our Thank You Roll of Honour on our website plus a hand crafted card.

£500 or more

1 of 2 claimed

£500 Reward

A workshop day for 10 people with lunch with a choice of activities from wood carving; felting; willow weaving; pottery and mosaics. Plus Your name on our Thank You Roll of Honour on our website plus a hand crafted card.

£1,000 or more

1 of 5 claimed

£1,000 Reward

Your business name and logo printed on the side of the new minibus. Plus Your name on our Thank You Roll of Honour on our website plus a hand crafted card.

£1,000 or more

0 of 2 claimed

£1,000 Reward

Business Awayday for 16 people including transport; local food lunch and other refreshments; a variety of individual or group activities or challenges using natural materials + card and name on Roll of Honour

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