FarmAbility, Gardens (2) — sankalpa supported activity
projects

FarmAbility Gardens

UK

The aim of FarmAbility is to enable people with learning disabilities and autism to improve their health, wellbeing and to make progress in their lives. Strengths and abilities are increased by concentrating on physically engaging and purposeful activities in small groups — with support that encourages independence and autonomy.

Founded in 2011 as a pilot project and registered as a charity in 2013, FarmAbility provides a meaningful outdoor programme for co-farmers; adults with autism and learning disabilities. Activities include animal care, horticulture, woodwork and seasonal farm tasks. 

In addition to FarmAbility Gardens, the charity also runs a number of other activities. Doing, Being, Belonging is a project which supports young people with autism and learning disabilities to find work in Oxfordshire and Equine Interaction and Therapy develops social interaction confidence through interacting with horses.

FarmAbility has recently partnered with two schools and one college, taking students into community growing spaces and onto farms in and around Oxford. In addition to preparing students for the transition to adulthood, the project builds new community connections and gives the wider community the chance to see how people with learning disabilities and autism can make a valuable contribution to society.

FarmAbility, Gardens (5) — sankalpa supported activity

sankalpa grants have facilitated the fantastic outcomes we see every day in the FarmAbility gardens:

A co-farmer with no verbal skills and severe autism spends 30 minutes quietly sieving compost. Gaining peace, enjoying a controlled sensory experience at the right level of stimulation for her. Alongside others who are equally, purposefully, engaged.

Sarah Giles, FarmAbility

As of 2013, sankalpa has provided FarmAbility with an annual grant towards the continuation and cultivation of their two organic vegetable gardens. Food from the gardens is primarily destined for co-farmers’ shared lunches — a daily activity whereby a supported co-farmer prepares a communal meal using fresh seasonal produce.

Co-farmers are involved in each stage of the gardening process, from sowing seeds to harvesting produce. The gardens offer a rich range of activities that suit different people with differing interests, needs and abilities.

FarmAbility, Gardens (4) — sankalpa supported activity
FarmAbility, Gardens (1) — sankalpa supported activity
FarmAbility, Gardens (3) — sankalpa supported activity
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