The Country Trust, a national education body that seeks to give children from disadvantaged backgrounds the opportunity to see agriculture in action, is campaigning to raise awareness about Educational Access Payments, which are available for those farmers who claim mid or higher-tier Countryside Stewardship.
The campaign ties in with the charity’s Farm Discovery programme which is currently appealing for more ‘Farmer Hosts’ to come forward. CEO of the Country Trust, Jill Attenborough said: “Lots of us do not realise how important the countryside and farming is for our everyday lives. When children do not get the chance to understand where food comes from and spend time outdoors there is a huge knock-on effect for health and the environment. “Over 40 years, we have honed the way we do farm visits to make them as rewarding as possible for children and teachers. We know our farmer hosts get a lot out of the visits too, and we are there every step of the way to make the process straight-forward.”
The programme which requires no financial input from its hosts is supported via the charity’s network of coordinators and is currently appealing for farmers in the Leeds or London area to come forward. Ms Attenborough sad: “We think every child should get to discover first-hand the connections between the food they eat, their own health and the health of the planet. We cannot do that without the support of more farmers.” As of February this year, it was announced that mid-tier farmers and growers in England and North Wales could now apply for up to £7,725 a year to help educate children and young people about farming and food as part of the Countryside Stewardship scheme. Previously, the programme had only be open to those in the higher tier. To find out more, visit: countrytrust.org.uk