Community Engagement, Health and Wellbeing:
One in four people in the UK suffers from mental health issues, and an alarming amount of people now suffer from social isolation and chronic loneliness. We want to do something to help.
The Food Forest Project works at a community level to help combat mental health issues through the planting of food forests. We consider that chronic loneliness, social isolation, mental health issues, stress and fatigue, and many other forms of suffering can be much reduced simply by being in nature; by being mindful of ones surroundings, and by planting and working in harmony with a food forest ecosystem. We will be working with local communities, and collaborating with other organisations to help alleviate suffering for those that need a helping hand to find community, and a sense of purpose.
The team at the FFP believes that natural, organic food should be accessible to everybody,irrespective of socioeconomic standing. In supermarkets, it is often the case that the organic ranges are priced highly rendering the organic market unattainable for many families and individuals, and therefore overlooked by many consumers. The organic produce grown in our community plots will be accessible to all, at no cost.
The health and wellbeing benefits instilled by being in natural spaces is huge for both body and mind. The NHS has started planting woodland as mounting evidence suggests that being in the countryside, specifically around trees can noticeably aid recovery. Our forests will be healing spaces of harmony and peace. Communities can forage for their own food, or sit and be mindful in a safe environment away from the stresses and demands of modern life.
In making donations to our work, you are fundamentally helping to address the issues mentioned above by building special places that will benefit local communities, whilst also creating spaces for wild life, and the natural world. In this time of imbalance and disconnect, our food forests can help restore a sense of harmony within our natural landscapes, and local communities - all it takes is a seed or imagination, for the sun to smile, and we can restore what has been lost.
As many of us are aware, the decline in species is ever growing, and at an alarming rate. According to the RSPB's Annual Bird Species Report, since the 1990's some of Britains' most familiar birds like the Turtle Dove, the Cuckoo, Yellow Wagtail, Willow Tit, Starlings, Lapwing and Wood Warbler have declined in species by up to 95%. Many of these birds inhabit farm land, and as their food sources, namely insects, have declined through the overuse of insecticides and other chemicals so too have the birds. Other declining species include the Hedgehog, Hazel Dormouse and various types of bats and amphibians, and unfortunately, many more are in danger of decline, and in some circumstances extinction. However, help is at hand. In recent years, there has been a resurgence in sustainable forms of agriculture, and we here at the FFP are part of this much needed movement. The food forests that we create will become rich areas of biodiversity, supplying much needed habitat for local wildlife. In supporting our work, you are directly aiding some of our most vulnerable wildlife.
Climate Change and regenerative agriculture:
Climate Change, air pollution and the toxification of the soil and water are prevalent political and social topics. The Food Forest Project proposes to mitigate the damage caused by these processes by creating natural spaces that capture carbon, stabilise soil erosion and create a healthy and fertile soil culture in the earth through the planting of fruiting woodland. A 2017 Forestry Commission report stated that on average, a tree will sequester (store) up to 1 tonne of Carbon (3.7 tonnes of Carbon Dioxide) a year, all the while producing more clean oxygen. Each of our forests will sequester a large amount of Carbon, aiding against Climate Change, and producing clean air. Regenerative agriculture is a system of farming principles and practices that increases biodiversity, enriches soils, improves watersheds, and enhances ecosystem services. By practicing regenerative agriculture, such as food forests and other forms of permaculture, we can actually start to repair the condition of the soil we use to grow our food, and even build a healthier and more fertile landscape than that which we have taken. By donating to the organisation, you will be helping to offset your Carbon Footprint (assess you Footprint using the WWF's Carbon Footprint Calculator to know your impact) and directly helping in the fight against climate change, air pollution, soil erosion and toxification of our natural landscapes, building a healthier, cleaner and happier planet for us all.
The Food Forest Project and Bioregionalism: Regeneration of Soil and Society.
We are living in a very challenging time. Our societies are broken, our governments lost and antiquated, our social framework inherently unsustainable and our natural world is failing. However, hope is not lost. There are some very positive movements happening all across the world, and they are only growing in scope, scale and popularity. Much of the research coming out of some of our most trusted institutes indicates that we need systematic change. We need change at all levels so that we can do more than just survive, but thrive, and our thriving is inextricably linked to the health and prosperity of our natural world. Our aim is to plant food forests, the seeds of change, within communities all across the UK, with the core objective of generating larger bioregions centered in regenerative agriculture.
The Food Forest Project sets out to make regenerative agriculture accessible to local communities by planting food forests (see our web site for more information about food forests).Soil health is a fundamental element of food production, and the foundation to life on earth. The more fertile our soil, the healthier and more resilient our crops are. Food forests are a form of agriculture known as permaculture that regenerates the soil, and surrounding environment working in harmony with the natural world. We consider that every person should have access to local, fresh food with no monetary or environmental cost. It is important that our food forests regenerate our local communities as well as the health of the environment. Our key objective is to reconnect communities with the natural world through the production of fresh food. We believe that a fundamental outcome of this process will be the renewed health and wellbeing of people and place; people through a renewed sense of purpose within a community, and place through the nutrients fed back into the soil by decomposing matter.
We work at a grassroots level with communities to plant food forests, but our overarching objective is to create full regions that concentrate on the health, wellbeing and prosperity of people and place. These regions have become known as Bioregions. Bioregions are relatively large areas of land characterised by broad, landscape-scale natural features and environmental processes that influence the functions of entire ecosystems. We want to begin defining regions through the regenerative practices of permaculture. We will be working with local land owners to start covering large areas of the landscape with food forest ecosystems. These areas of land will be covered in high yielding and diverse crops, in design systems centred on biodiversity and the regeneration of the natural world and local communities. They will be places for people to learn in; for people to heal in; for people to forage and produce food in; for wildlife to thrive in; for the soil to regenerate in, and to be used as natural flood defences to mitigate the effects of climate change.
If you would like further details about our organisation, and how you can get involved, or you would like to know more about what we are doing, please contact us through the website. We would be happy to receive your email.