Pilot project to help farmers inspire the next generation

A project being launched by Linking Environment And Farming (LEAF) Education and AHDB will be offering 20 farmers from England and Wales fully funded training to deliver memorable on-farm experiences and help school children better connect with food and farming.

The project aims to provide more children with the opportunity to experience a real working farm first-hand and learn about where their food comes from.

Farmers who are relatively new to hosting school visits are encouraged to apply from the beef and lamb, cereals and oilseeds, dairy and pork sectors. Successful applicants will receive Countryside Educational Visits Accreditation Scheme (CEVAS) training and accreditation starting this November.

In addition, participants will be given access to support from LEAF Education Specialists and opportunities to network with like-minded experienced host farmers. Schools will also have access to funding towards transport, thereby addressing a key barrier to getting school children out on farm.

Roz Reynolds, AHDB’s head of education, said: “We are excited to launch this pilot project as we believe it has the potential to make a real difference to the way that school children learn about where their food comes from.”

“Levy payers picked education as one of the key areas of AHDB’s work, following the Shape the Future results,” Mr Reynolds pointed out. “AHDB is now actioning this and increasing opportunities for children to access and experience a real working farm first hand.”

On the longer term, the findings gathered from this pilot project will help in shaping AHDB’s future education projects and identifying whether a wider roll-out of the support package is a good return on levy investment.

Carl Edwards, LEAF’s director of Education and Public Engagement, commented: “We are delighted to be partnering with AHDB on this important project.

“We believe that this project will help to equip farmers with the skills and knowledge they need to deliver engaging and informative experiential learning opportunities. This is essential in ensuring that the next generation understands and values food production from farm to fork.”

For more information and to submit applications, visit ahdb.org.uk/schoolfarmvisits. Deadline for submissions is 16 October.

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