Summer on the farm in Bath allows us to provide some fun and respite for groups by experiencing the countryside far from the pressures of everyday life.
We have enjoyed two weeks with local organisation, Adventures with Friends. The first week we relished the high energy of a younger group who excelled on a sheep move, engaged in lots of crafts and really embraced horse work as a way of regulating emotions and building up their inner confidence. On the second week, we welcomed a mix of newcomers and returners who were able to build new connections and share their skills.
Then in August, young people from Southwark Youth Offending Service appreciated a break away from the city to experience the countryside. They excelled in woodchopping, but what made the week so special was seeing them bond with the adults who support them back in London, as this is key to young people’s success going forward. When asked about their highlight, one young person said;
“Bonding with the workers … I used to see them as formal people, but I feel it will be easier to work with them now. We talked about the support I will receive after I finish working with them and they were able to reassure me about that.”
We also had the privilege to share the farm with three families from West London through organisation Families Forward. They embraced the week as an opportunity to connect with and support each other and thrive out of their comfort zone. We have been humbled by their openness and resilience, and we have gained so much from spending the week with them.
Following up on those who have visited us is a key part of our programme at Jamie’s Farm. It was very special to hear from the group of young refugees and asylum seekers that visited us six months ago through organisation Young Roots. They have continued to build their confidence, access further opportunities to explore their interests and received some good news with regards to their living situations in the UK. We wish them all the best for the future.
Out on the farm, all silage has now been harvested ready for winter feeds and our early lambing is in motion with tupping due to take place in a couple of weeks’ time. Our now regular session of milking the Jersey cows has not only been a popular activity, but also a lovely way to see the whole process of milk to butter, cream, and even homemade ricotta! Our garden has also been extremely productive, and we have loved harvesting blueberries, wineberries, tomatoes and aubergines.
We’re also busy getting the site ready for our Open Day on Saturday 9th September, 11am – 3pm. A wonderful opportunity to explore the farm, meet the team, and enjoy a family friendly day out. We look forward to seeing you there!