First of all we want to show that sharing does not mean, "Losing" something. We do this by donating plants, trees and seed to everyone, we will not make any difference. We can all benefit from this regardless of status.
We will find the most healthy and good ways to introduce shared harvest as a habit a pleasure, which makes our life so much richer.
Second we are focusing on giving the knowledge and the tools to everyone, and will train people for their communities free of charge. To support in their communities other people to spread and share this exciting experience.
Our Community Garden Keepers will be trained to talk to Government, Councils and common people to share with the project empty spaces.
This 10% of sharing of the harvest will have an impact on foodbanks, it looks very little bearing in mind, the 90% you can keep for yourself, as condition to get free seeds and plants, but it is a lot if you look of the poverty numbers in every given country. And it does cost you nothing, except watering some soil and daily short time attention. We are not asking for big plots, just a plant on your windowsill can do something big for someone in need.
What If... we all together can relieve poverty without spending an extra penny?
What if... we all can eat healthier and fresh good organic food?
What if... we can build projects, which can finance themselves with profit?
What if... the profits are used for education and to grow more such projects?
We can by supporting this one project and here how it works:
Until now, many projects are focusing to relief poverty, to feed people, the long waiting lines in front of our food banks are witness for this.
Governments all over the world are running out of money and giving money seems not to tackle the problem in the long term.
We are coming up with a new concept. We are going away from the classical charity model to a business that focuses on the needs of the community. A healthy balance of business and community benefit is the long term solution, independent, working and self sufficient. This project will pay taxes, and aims for being part of the society, rather than being another tax eating third sector project. Donations are wonderful and needed to start this project, but we will not rely on it in the long term.
We want to buy an organic farm with woods. This farm was been 13 years not used, so the soil is perfect recovered. The woods are in perfect condition. Here we want to grow organic seeds and fruit trees, which we will give free of charge to everyone who is willing to share their harvest (90% for the grower, 10 % for good cause ) with food banks or people in need. The seeds are grown with the help of volunteers, which learn from experienced gardeners how to grow organic food in the space they have.
Some of the volunteers will become Community garden keepers and will help in their communities to find space to grow food and to advise gardeners how to grow organic food. We will promote as well solutions like bottle gardens, recycling of food pots as growing pots and how to make compost and the exchange of unused greenhouses against share of harvest. One of the main duties of Community garden keepers will be to find schools, parks where we can supply fruit and nut trees for the public to harvest. We will show as well, how to make self seeds for sharing and exchange. The Community garden keepers will promote the spirit of sharing and that every little helps the community. Everyone can be part of it, as many things need to be done, not only gardening. Even to collect the seeds from your breakfast apple can support this project.
We will establish on www.letsgrow.today a peer to peer platform for gardeners all over the world to exchange seeds and to help each other. To participate on our "space for growing” program, to share empty greenhouses and unused gardens against shared harvest. We will focus on knowledge about gardening but as well knowledge of plants, fruits from the wilderness, cooking, preservation of harvest and nutrition.
We will showcase in the second year an ornamental fruit and vegetable garden to show the beauty of vegetables and fruits in a low maintenance environment.
Most of the produced fruits and vegetables on our farm will be used to produce food for the workforce and for some delicate luxury food which we will sell, for the benefit of the project.
How to finance this?
We will use the woods to grow very special plants for medical use. Reishi mushrooms and special, very rare herbs. We will grow fertility herbs and sell our own blends, to promote more vitality, and to support healthy hormonal levels at any given age and gender. There will be as well a kind of organic herbal "Viagra".
There will be nutritional elixirs for recovery and vitality and anti aging formulas organic grown.
We will produce organic honey and herbal tea blends.
Ornamental plants and trees
Besides this we will grow ornamental trees and plants for sale, all what is not edible you will find in this category grown organic to nourish your eye and uplift your mind. We will focus on plants, which let you enjoy fragrance and luxury.
Exciting organic grown preserves, jams and pickles.
Nourishment for the senses, new flavours and uplifting recipes. Creative use of herbs, vegetables and fruits. We are not going for quantity but for quality, so there will be the possibility for subscriptions, with monthly changing products only limited by production.
We will provide a quiet spiritual minded accommodation for people who value the nature and the quietness, and for the pilgrims of the nearby interfaith Skanda Vale Temple. The temple is not only having a very good food program for people in need, but as well as hospice for the terminal ill.
We will be able to accommodate up to 27 people/pilgrims a day. Our canteen will provide suitable food, there will be all needed facilities. The visitor can choose between tent, yurt and static mobile home for accommodations. The place is alcohol free and we will over the years provide little spaces for quiet worship and benches to enjoy the nature.
Care / respite for disabled and recovery
We want to establish on our grounds for severe disabled /elderly people in respite an accommodation. We can offer very cheap solutions, which enable families in very poor conditions, to take a rest. We will have in the first years to restrict the stay to a maximum of 6 weeks due restrictions in law. As we start with refurbished disabled static mobile homes we can only offer short stays. The kitchen part and bathroom will be bigger due the needs of our visitors; we will use 3- 4 bedroom static homes to accommodate in each home 2 persons. There will be a little weekly rent, and the offer of housekeeping services and food from the canteen. We will work together with a care service in the area to cover care needs. Each static mobile home will have its own little garden, with enough spaces to ensure privacy, the mobile homes will be arranged in a circle and in the middle will be a shared area with fire place and decked area with roof for get together.
Once a year we will hold a 3 days lasting artistic harvest festival with music to celebrate the nature, good food and the community.
We will stream this event in the internet, that everyone can be part of it. We will start 2 weeks earlier to broadcast the preparations for the event. We will invite artists and musicians with diverse background to make this a marvelous spectacle.
All kinds of food of the world will be offered to make this event to a sensual experience. No worries, there is something good for everyone’s taste. We will honor the welsh taste, in equal respect to all other cultures.
- Courses for health and beauty
- Courses for nutrition and cooking
- Courses for gardening, harvest and preservation
- Guided tours over the property
- Herbal courses and how to make remedies
- But as well a space which can be used from therapists for their treatments. (Rental income)
What we need to start:
1) The land, which is 27 acres with some buildings on it, ready to start.
Price tag £ 609000. - The price is justified because of the quality of the land.
We do not need to own the land, so we would be happy to have an investor who buys the land for us, and give it to us for 4 years on a very low lease, from year 5 to a regular lease with the option to buy the land within 15 years.
The worst case scenario financial plan is estimating including bad weather, change of laws, loosing parts of business, we are latest running in year 5 a high income, best case scenario 3 years. This is related to the business itself, as trees need a couple of years to grow, and mushrooms need time to establish themselves.
As we choosing to be a Community Benefit Society, we will have to pay regular taxes as any other commercial Company, but we decided for this form, as it gives us more flexibility on the market. And we want to show in this pilot project that we can do business and support the community equal. Once this is established, we will be eligible for grants and other funding.
2) Startup capital, £150000 this includes additional buildings like the canteen, seeds and outbuildings. We will use for the first years recycled buildings, containers with shower facilities for example, redecorated, to keep the initial investment low. We will need a tractor with additional tools, polytunnels and tools. And we will use photovoltaic as energy source as well as wood burners and similar techniques to run sustainable.
Things like beehives, and a kitchen to make special luxury jams and tea mixes for sale, protective clothing included, down to the needed screws, is in our financial plan. We are happy to send it to everyone who is interested in numbers.