Job title Surrey Hills Care Farm Coordinator
Reporting to (post) Chair, Surrey Hills Society
Hours of work 3 days a week (22.5 hours), flexible working by agreement. Some evening/weekend working required.
Located at Mainly home working with easy access to sites across East Surrey.
Salary Actual £18,000 (£30k pro rata)
About the Surrey Hills Society: The Surrey Hills Society is an independent charity promoting the positive enjoyment and conservation of the Surrey Hills National Landscape for those who live, work in, or visit the area. The Society encourages people to explore and learn about the special qualities and distinctiveness of the area through walks, talks, events, practical conservation, and volunteering.
An 18-month employment contract with the Surrey Hills Society (reviewed after a probationary period of 3 months) to oversee the coordination of the Care Farm pilot project in East Surrey.
About the project:
Care farming refers to the therapeutic use of farming practices. There are many different models for how a care farm may operate and these are as diverse as the people that they support. One thing all care farms have is common is providing a supervised, structured programme of farm-related activity for people with a defined need. Care is bespoke, person-centred and focused on the individual. Care farming activity has a real purpose behind it where people are able to make a meaningful contribution to the running of a farm.
The Surrey Hills Society, in partnership with the Surrey Hills team and Growing Health Together have been awarded a grant to initiate a pilot of nature-based health interventions on farms in East Surrey. These can support the mental health of people from all ages and backgrounds with Surrey Heartlands’ priority communities as the focus. The approach will be tailored to the local beneficiaries and hosts, while adapting the model in response to real time learning. Our plan is deliberately open and will evolve according to local needs and circumstances, initially using a small number of farms. Once a successful model has been established the ambition is to develop this into a wider programme to support health outcomes and help diversify farm incomes across Surrey.
We are also looking to develop a particular arts component to this initiative, recognising the significant additional benefits to mental wellbeing of engagement in the creative arts, particularly for groups who have historically been underserved by traditional services.
The proposed care farm initiative responds to unmet need that cannot be met through traditional services and would engage those who are currently struggling to access holistic support for their mental wellbeing. The provision would be novel for the NHS, social care, and social prescribing in Surrey and will, additionally, offer educational opportunities.
The role will involve developing, managing, and promoting a varied programme of group activities and events on working, commercial tenant farms to support farm incomes and people who are socially isolated and are experiencing mental health issues in East Surrey.
Being part of a small charity, you will need to be a self-starter and work closely with the Growing Health Together and the Surrey Hills National Landscape Teams.
You will work to coordinate referral programmes and help evaluate the impact of the project.