Last month we had a wonderful week basking in the sunshine with Lambeth Youth Justice. The horses played a particularly important role for one young person, who had previous experience with horses but had had to stop attending the riding school. He was keen to re-engage with horses and found them a therapeutic space for the whole week, and said it had been “his highlight”.
An equally wonderful week immersed in the mud with Carew Academy, a returning partner, allowing for lots of exploration and developing independence with young people with tasks around the farm. For the final week of the month, we enjoyed a nature-filled, foraging, storytelling, collaborative celebration week with 13 Bertha Earth ambassadors from William Ellis, who are coming to the farm as part of their fantastic youth program.
A joyful time out on the farm. The chickens are out of lockdown, the grass is finally starting to grow, and spring calving is almost over! All but one sheep have lambed, and the lambs are out enjoying the lush grass and entertaining the young people with their antics. We are looking forward to welcoming a new batch of chickens to the farm, and we are very excited to be in the process of making our new chicken tractors, which will be a valuable addition to our practice.
Did you know, there are 275 species of bee in the UK? One honey bee, 25 bumble bees and the rest are solitary bees. Below is a picture of a solitary bee which has been pollinating our redcurrant bushes, and a worker bee which is filling its pollen sacks on its legs.
As ever, residential and regular volunteers have played a key role for us this month. We are excited to welcome back Emma Rawlins, who has returned from her travels to continue running fantastic cooking, crafting and gardening sessions with young people. A special shout out to Susannah, a returning residential volunteer; it makes all the difference to the young people to have a consistent, familiar face turning up daily for a week (and for the team, too!).
We are thrilled to announce that Dave, former Senior Visit Co-Ordinator at our Monmouth farm, has taken over as Head of Farm in Hereford. His enthusiasm, experience and terrible taste in puns are already hugely appreciated and already making us laugh – as evident below. We look forward to an exciting new chapter with him at the helm.
Finally, we look forward to seeing many of you at our Open Day on 15th July. Our committed team of garden volunteers are already hard at work making the place look beautiful, and we are excited to share talks, stalls and activities for all the family!