- Generates income through local authority funded clients with a variety of needs.
- Experience of the social care sector.
- Large enterprise with a garden, not a farm.
- Clients attend one day a week and fit into wider activities.
- Clients help to grow food, and then share lunch.
- The benefit to clients is monitored.
This case study is a day service for adults with a learning disability, autism or Asperger’s to those with a Self-Directed Support budget. The care farm provides a healthy daily structure in a community vegetable garden, polytunnel, local woodlands, and workshop studios. Activities include seeding, planting, harvesting, weeding, composting. This helps participants’ confidence and develops social and practical skills. Lunch with a wider community made with food from the farm, and creative sessions each afternoon to support the expansion of participants’ experiences. The objective is to encourage confidence, improve skills and enable empowerment. Attendees get fresh air, work, exercise, skills, good healthy food, interaction and gratitude. Service users attend for a trial period and then an assessment is made about whether the facilities are appropriate for that person’s needs. Celebrations form an important part of the schedule.
The initiative was set up as an attempt to target certain groups and to interact more closely with the local community, and bringing more social inclusion to the organisation. Referrals come from the local council. There are four staff in the team who look after around eight service users. There is a professional knowledge about how to work with self -directed support. This is a professional and innovative service provider that has moved into providing green care in a manner that appears both sustainable and caring.
Find out more about Findhorn Bay Care Farm here.