For people, for nature

by Sacred Earth in Horam, England, United Kingdom

£11,320

raised of £45,000 stretch target

82

supporters
25% 2 days left
This project will only be funded if at least £10,000 is pledged by April 22nd 2019 at 5:00pm

Support Sacred Earth to reach its full potential, so we can tackle some big issues - loneliness, isolation and environmental degradation.

by Sacred Earth in Horam, England, United Kingdom

New stretch target

£2,000 - Earth Steward Apprenticeship bursary fund, for those whose families are unable to afford the fees 

£2,000 - operational running costs for Touchstones pilot

£2,000 - conservation work on site, including dormice boxes, bee support and flood relief

£3,000 - research into saving the Sussex ash tree from ash dieback disease

 

£1,000 - building new composting toilet

Help us reach our potential as an organisation. We’re growing and with your help, we’ve transformed an exploited industrial site into a haven for people and wildlife. 

Now we want to take the next step, build on our existing achievements and create new projects that can address some of the big issues we all face.


What are we trying to achieve?

We want to build on what we’ve learned to launch a new mentoring project called Touchstones. It will bring young and old people together on the land. We believe that these two groups can learn a lot from each other, but in everyday life their paths rarely cross. You'll probably have heard about the isolation faced by many older people but did you know many young people feel the same way? Research from the BBC last year showed that 40 per cent of 16-24 year-olds described themselves as lonely. 

Touchstones participants will work together to create a wildlife-friendly peace garden at Sacred Earth. As well as supporting local biodiversity they will develop new friendships, learn new skills and start to feel that they are part of a community. Our experienced facilitators will also introduce a series of fun activities that encourage mindfulness and sensory development.

Our flagship outdoor education project, the Earth Steward Apprenticeship (ESA), has already helped 225 teenagers to develop their social, emotional and natural intelligence - so we know that nature-based mentoring works. You can read a review from an ESA student here.

Sacred Earth is all about connecting people with themselves, each other and the natural world. We’d like to expand what we can offer but to do this we need your support. Below is a full list of our projects. Which one are you interested in?

• Build connections between young and old people – Touchstones.

• Help teenagers find their place in the world, through the medium of nature – Earth Steward Apprenticeship.

• Give wildlife a helping hand – bee, dormice and wetland conservation projects.

• Save the Sussex ash tree – support our research into biochar and dieback disease.


What makes our project great?

The English poet John Donne said: “No man is an island.” Human beings aren’t designed to function on their own. We need other people in so many different ways. Touchstones is about creating a connection between two groups of people who really need it.

Sacred Earth is all about community. Community means people. This is much more than just a beautiful place in Sussex, it’s a committed group of people who believe in the healing power of nature. You can meet the team here and check out Facebook for all our latest news.

Who are we and what is our experience?

Sacred Earth is a Community Benefit Society (CBS), which means we are run solely for the benefit of our community and any profits are put back into the organisation.

We have a leadership team, who run the day-to-day business and a management team, who advise on strategy and direction. 

Sacred Earth’s story

Our 40-acre site was a derelict brickworks when we took it over in 2011. It was bought for us by a local philanthropist who wanted it to be become an environmentally sustainable community hub. 

Since then we’ve cleared tonnes of rubbish and industrial waste, re-instated some of the land for biodynamic agricultural use, had an ecological survey done and set up several projects to improve specific areas of the site for wildlife.

We’ve got woodland, farmland, an old clay pit (now an incredible wetland habitat) and a large lake.

Sacred Earth is unique because we do several different things:

• We support environmentally friendly agriculture. We already have a biodynamic farm on our site.

• We have 40 acres of land that - thanks to your donations, the help of volunteers and our expert stewardship - has much greater biodiversity than the surrounding farmland. We want to build on this success to become a vital nature corridor in an area that is experiencing an unprecedented level of housing and road development.

• We aim to become a centre of excellence in ecotherapy and to expand what we offer to support a wide range of vulnerable people.

• We want to be a hub for local, sustainable microbusinesses. We already have a biochar production unit and a willow growing enterprise on site.


How will the money be spent?

• 8,000 - ESA bursary fund, enabling young people from low-income backgrounds to take part

• 8,000 - operational running costs for Touchstones pilot

• 6,000 - conservation work, including dormice and bee habitat creation and flood contingency works

• 4,000 - research into saving the Sussex ash tree from dieback disease

• 1000 - building a new composting toilet

Why should you fund our project?

• You will be helping young people develop their confidence and emotional intelligence and supporting them to build a range of practical skills.

  • • You’ll be broadening their social experience beyond their peer group and immediate family and helping them find their place in the world.

• You’ll be helping to reduce the loneliness and isolation felt by so many older people who live alone.

• You'll be helping to enhance biodiversity on our site and supporting local wildlife at a time of mass habitat destruction.


Rewards

This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£25 or more

Plant A Tree For Future Generations

Do your bit for the environment – plant a tree for future generations of people and animals. You’ll also be helping us grow new native ash and oak trees at Sacred Earth. Join us on the following dates or ask us to plant yours for you: October 18, November 23 or December 6, 2019.

£25 or more

Sacred Earth Walk & Talk

Come to our 40-acre site for a guided walk and talk with our founder, Phil Greenwood. Things you’ll see and do: • Try out the new boardwalks, which run around the edge of the lake • Visit the old clay pit, with its resident herons • Try our new pond dipping deck • Walk through the woods and see what our ESA students have been up to • Meet the pigs on our biodynamic farm • Eat cake. Choose one of two dates: July 13 and September 1, 2019.

£50 or more

Buy A Share in Sacred Earth

For just £50 – the cost of one share – you can join us and have a say in our future. Your investment will help us with a range of interesting projects and you’ll get a 15 per cent discount on all our courses.

£100 or more

Support Our Dormice Project

With your help, we can provide better habitats for dormice on our site. We want to plant more hazel trees, which provide them with their main source of food. We’d also like to build more boxes for them, so they can hibernate in safety.

£100 or more

Support Our Bee Project

Help us build more bee hives and sow more flowering plants for them to feed on.

£150 or more

Soil health workshop and free bag of biochar

Spend a day at Sacred Earth under the expert tutelage of our founder and soil expert, Phil Greenwood. You’ll learn how to build the health of your soil using organic/biodynamic techniques and biochar, sourced from our woodlands. Useful for flower and veggie growers, or anyone interested in how healthy soil can tackle climate change. Dates: 6th September or 11th October, 2019.

£150 or more

Nature Connection Day

Spend a day connecting with the natural world at our beautiful 40-acre site near Horam, East Sussex. You will deepen your connection to yourself and the world around you, assisted by our experienced facilitator, Phil Greenwood and the elements of earth, fire, air and water. Date: 4th May, 2019

£150 or more

Health & Wellbeing Day at Sacred Earth

Spend a day relaxing at our beautiful site near Horam, East Sussex and let yourself be guided by our experienced health practitioner, Susy Greenwood. You’ll have a mindfulness practice out in nature (weather permitting), a yoga session in our yurt and a class in active listening techniques. The day will also include a locally-sourced, organic lunch. Dates: April 13 and June 1, 2019.

£250 or more

Sponsor a Touchstones participant for six weeks

Sponsor a young or old person to take part in Touchstones for a six-week programme. Touchstones participants will receive: one-to-one mentoring and follow-up support online; the chance to learn gardening, land management and cooking skills; the chance to build new friendships and support networks; the chance to spend time with the animals on our biodynamic farm; the chance to take part in other community events.

£1,000 or more

Employee Reward Day

Are you a business owner who wants to treat your staff to a unique team building experience? We can accommodate a team of 20 and provide three different options for you to choose from: 1. Nature connection (mindfulness sessions) and learning some natural skills/crafts 2. Live role play day, including lots of games 3. Conservation themed team-building event, where people can learn about the local flora and fauna. Dates: to suit you.

£2,500 or more

Grant a Touchstone

Support the mentoring of a young person over the entire six-month Touchstones programme. This is your chance to make a real difference to someone’s life. They will receive: one-to-one mentoring and support during their days at Sacred Earth; the chance to learn gardening, land management and cooking skills; the chance to build new friendships and support networks; the chance to spend time with the animals on our biodynamic farm.

£5,000 or more

Train A Touchstones Facilitator

Invest in the cost of training a facilitator over the course of our 6-month Touchstones project. Your investment will support local people to reach their true potential and enable them to become part of a supportive community. Trainee facilitators will receive: one-to-one guidance from experienced mentors and facilitators over the six month programme period; group support sessions; individual supervision sessions.

£5,000 or more

Earth Steward Apprentice Bursary Fund

Help support young people from low-income backgrounds to take part in our ESA programme. This year we subsidised £4,000-worth of bursaries from our own funds.


Let's make 'For people, for nature' happen