Vauxhall City Farm is one of the oldest and most central city farms in London being located within earshot of Big Ben and in the shadow of MI6. Despite this proximity to ‘wealth’, Lambeth is one of the most deprived boroughs in London and the farm is surrounded by high-rise blocks occupied by individuals and families, many of whom have low incomes and suffer poverty of opportunity.
Given the open access nature of the farm, it would be very easy to dismiss VCF as simply being a cute place to visit and ‘all about the animals’. Behind the public face, the reality is that our animals, whilst much loved, are essentially a vehicle for education and change; the animals feature in many of our programmes and are key to helping our staff and volunteers engage with and deliver positive impact for both individual beneficiaries and groups from our wider community.
“I was first interested in volunteering at the farm because I love animals! However when you’re at the farm, you quickly see how much value it adds to the community. It’s an inclusive environment, filled with positivity, so not only is it a great place to be, but it’s great to be able to contribute and support it.” — Nina, Farmyard & Event volunteer
Our vision is a city where people from all communities are empowered to experience nature to enhance their health, well-being, and life chances and we use the setting of our urban farm to provide a wide range of educational, recreational and therapeutic support programmes and activities that:
- Support children and disadvantaged people to boost their confidence and aspirations via the development of personal, social, life and practical skills
- Promote emotional, mental, social and physical health and well-being
- Develop environmental awareness and action
- Strengthen community cohesion
- Create enjoyment and recreational opportunities for those from our local and wider communities
To meet these aims; each year we welcome around 50,000 visitors to the farm, deliver specific training and development programmes, workshops and activities for around 7,000 children and young people and reach over 50,000 more off-site (via mobile farms and outreach delivery activities). We deliver our work via four core project areas; our Farmyard, an Education & Training Team, a Riding Team, and our Training Café.
We aim to generate as much income as possible from our own activities but could not survive and deliver all we do for the local and wider London community without the support of private Trusts, Foundations, Philanthropists, Corporate Supporters and Funders and, not least, the generosity of visitors to the farm and here, on our website.
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