Sol-Haven permaculture community farm helping those in need access healthy food
by Sammuel Yisrael
At the time of writing, the world is in the grip of the COVID-19 pandemic and the UK population is struggling to come to terms with a radical departure from our usual way of life. As panic buying led to empty supermarket shelves, people became understandably concerned about food security. Many have become interested for the first time in ‘growing their own’ as sales of vegetable seeds online have soared and even poultry keeping reportedly increased.
When we pass through this crisis and begin to rebuild and re-evaluate our communities, Sol-Haven is ideally placed to offer support, inspiration and education to those who seek a little more self-reliance. Through this project we will reach out to the most vulnerable and needy families.
Permaculture is an innovative and practical framework for creating sustainable ways of living that can be used by anyone, anywhere. We follow the three ethics of permaculture;
We believe in the intrinsic value of life. We are committed to regenerating ruined and/or dying landscapes. We allow healthy ecosystems to thrive and aim to reduce our impact on the environment with zero-waste living. The objective of our project is to bring healing while connecting with mother earth using the best of natural resources and reusing waste to reduce impact on the environment.
We believe in the intrinsic value of humanity, working to meet peoples’ needs of food, shelter, education, and joy. We use a simple step by step process and systems within a safe working environment, to enable individuals to learn, grow and blossom to their full potential.
We share our resources to create the best impact on the earth and all its people. This project helps Improve liveability by improving the living environment for communities and reduces the amount of waste produced.
With the help of funding from the government coronavirus community support fund we have expanded our services to provide a emergency food-bank and carry out food deliveries to: homeless people in hotel accommodation, key-workers for people in safe houses due to domestic abuse, people with learning disabilities, and older people unable to leave home.
Responding to need
We are one of the organisations locally that prepare and cook food for homeless people. We also provide online support to people due to lockdown helping people stay mentality stimulated and physically active. However, we are meeting just 20% of the demand that has come to our doors and knew that we critically needeed funding to sustain this emergency measure. We are also providing a source of mentoring/counselling and other online support services - meditation, exercise class, breath work, cooking classes, group support calls to provide social engagement.
During the lockdown, strong community support has been created and we want to further these community bonds to ensure that support continues far beyond this time. There will be many people who find it hard to go out again and we aim to continue support for these groups. Bringing vulnerable members of the community to farms is a way to tackle loneliness and social isolation. We find it helps people with their mental health, whilst sharing the benefits of the natural environment, along with a wider range of specialist online / home support and opportunities for people with learning disabilities, autistic spectrum disorders and mental health conditions.
Sol Haven’s service is providing healthy vegan food that is made from natural ingredients and filled with love and all the packing is compostable to be friendly to the environment.
They are currently looking for other companies who would like to help those in need by supplying Vegan food, drinks or items to create a food bank such as storage units, fridges etc. All this will help Sol Haven to create a food bank that will be a calling point for people in need.
For further information about how you can help Sol Haven please contact Natasha on 01604307783 or visit www.solhaven.co.uk