Community Supported Agricultural (CSA) schemes not only provide organic, ethically produced food for local communities, but they also restore depleted soil, bring back biodiversity and help reforge human relationships with the land. Oak Tree Farm, featured in TFP6, keeps hens, pigs and bees as well as grows a wide variety of vegetables in its now flourishing fields. However like most enterprises (and indeed most British farms) it needs financial assistance to keep going. Lucy Drake from Transition Ipswich gives a call out for some funding assistance:
The Oak Tree is a unique Low-Carbon Community Farm on the edge of Ipswich which has grown from small beginnings, and very impoverished soil, in 2010 to a vibrant community producing weekly veg-boxes, eggs and pork for over 70 families, and is now a safe haven for much wildlife. It is a Permaculture Association Land Demonstration Farm and has won numerous awards including the Suffolk Carbon Charter Gold Standard and the Creating the Greenest County ‘Community: Local Food Award. It has also been featured in The Guardian and on ITV. However the unexpected loss of some major promised funding means it may have to close within months.
Butit is fighting back with a crowd-funding initiative which has raised an amazing £10,000 in its first week! However unless it can get to its target of £27,000 by the end of September it will have to close. It has lots of supporters but needs more! Closure would be a tragedy, not only for the growers but for the whole idea of small scale, community-led, low-carbon and environmentally beneficial farming of which it is a shining example. Can you help, even in a little way?