Case Study 6 - Glachbeg Croft Centre
- Educational activities on a croft.
- Experience in education.
- Contracts through education and health service.
- Established and working for years.
- Well placed to bigger populations.
- Business model that works.
(NOTE:This case study is derived from informal discussion and material from website so that it could be placed alongside the other case studies.)
This centre offers hands on context for delivery of the school curriculum, community events and training for adults with additional support needs – to support adults and children in fulfilling their potential. Programmes are offered in the context of farming, growing, countryside and environmental education. It is a farm designed for learning and understanding the principles behind the production of the food we eat. The social croft offers a work type context, development of skills of independence, self- responsibility and initiative, life skills and work-related training.
The crofter has a teaching background partly in an Education Centre based on a City Farm which was a great context for delivering all aspects of the school curriculum,
“We are driven by a belief in the value of this context for learning across the community, and the importance of people knowing about the food they eat and the planet they live on. Not a highly profitable thing to do in monetary terms, but very profitable in satisfaction terms!”
People usually work on a one to one basis with their staff “buddy”. Purposes are identified and form the basis for outdoor and indoor activities. The backbone of activities is animal care, plant growing, food production through the garden and polytunnel, the woodland and the outdoors. This allows the attachment of many experiences, including cooking, baking, literacy, numeracy, money, art, craft, music, and environmental work. Usually people attend weekly either for a short term but can be extended.
Work is largely outdoors so there are Health and Safety matters to consider associated with working outdoors with livestock and tools. Risk assessments are in place for activities. Clients should have suitable clothing. People with high support needs may have to bring their own additional support.
The centre building is fully accessible; around the outdoor areas is variable depending on weather.
The following are on site:
Sheep, Cattle, Vegetable Garden, Polytunnel, Ornamental Garden, Small Mammals, Arts and Crafts, Sustainable centre building, recording and music, Soft fruits, Top fruits, Tree nursery, Poultry, Garden machinery, Woodland, Green woodworking, IT, Tractor and implements, Kitchen, Barn.
“I just need to see the smile on a face to know this works”
This is a site that offers services in the context of a croft. It works, and is a financially viable model. Lots of experience went into making it workable.
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Find out more about Glachbeg Croft Centre here