What is The Community Farm trying to achieve?
What is really special about The Community Farm is its role as one of the first UK Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) projects to engage a city population. Up to now, most CSAs tended to involve residents living within a few miles of a small farm. The Community Farm is trying to replicate this on a bigger scale by involving the communities local to the farm as well as those in the cities 10 to 15 miles away. So far the Farm is succeeding and attracting great interest. Others in the UK and further afield are keen to learn from us and to reproduce what we are doing - we have already had visitors from Japan, Italy and around the UK. By donating to The Farm you will be part of creating a new approach to sustainable farming; one that can endure and be copied for the benefit of all.
What do we do?
The Farm is growing vegetables and fruit organically on 22 acres of land, set in the Chew Valley to the south of Bristol and west of Bath. It is a community supported agriculture enterprise owned by its members, with just over 460 members currently. The Farm has a tenancy agreement with Luke Hasell who owns the land. Luke is also a member of The Farm and serves on the Board. The Farm runs a vegetable box scheme and wholesale business.
We deliver organic vegetable boxes to over 350 customers a week and serve an increasing number of shops, schools and restaurants. We also hold regular Community Farmer Days (volunteer work days) and events at the farm and plan to hold training and educational activities in 2012 but need to provide the facilities to be able to do this.
How have we raised funds so far?
In November 2010 we launched our first community share offer where individuals, businesses and organisations could invest anything from £50 to £20,000 in the project. This raised over £126,000 and enabled us take over an existing veg box scheme as a going concern. In November 2011 a further £45,000 was raised through a second share offer which is ongoing until the end of February 2012. Both these investments have enabled us to take over an existing box scheme and wholesale business which supports the community engagement that is such an important part of this project. We are also in the position to invest in better equipment including replacing our rather old tractor!
How can you help?
By donating to the farm you will be helping us to raise the funds to provide shelter, hot water, compost toilets and educational materials so that we can have school visits to the farm and start children off on their discovery of sustainably produced fresh organic vegetables and an understanding of the need for this type of farm for the future.
As a social enterprise owned by its members, we aim to run a successful business that takes its social and environmental responsibilities seriously whilst remaining a viable going concern. We aim not to be grant dependent. If we exceed our target then the additional funding will go towards expanding our education programme and employing a part-time co-ordinator.
Please visit ourwebsite www.thecommunityfarm.co.uk where you will find out lots more information about the people behind the farm and what we're aiming to achieve
If you have any queries please email: email@example.com