Call for support to help get educational farm in Thurston off the ground

Field of Dreams Farm in Thurston.

Field of Dreams Farm in Thurston. - Credit: Contributed

A charity that empowers young people who are feeling lost in life is appealing for donations to support a project for an educational farm in west Suffolk.

Mark Byford, a founder of the Crack on Foundation, said they need £15,000 to get the project off the ground, but donations such as unwanted farm animals and items like seeds and hay bales would also be gratefully received.

The farm, which is planned for a site in Thurston, is due to be up and running in the next couple of weeks.

Mr Byford said the idea is young people, who may be dealing with issues such as drugs, can work with the animals and grow produce, picking up useful skills along the way. “The idea is the site will be somewhere they can have a get-away place out of the normality of school or anything else. This will be somewhere they can go to gain hands-on, practical experience.

“Most of the kids who come to us struggle with the fact they cannot read or write. They cannot count very well and then get frustrated at school and don’t continue with school and then it spirals out of control.”

He added the farm would also become a “social point” for the young people.

The long-term plan is for there to be a farm shop, but in the meantime their produce will be sold in the Crack on shops, helping to fund the project and the charity, which works with the under 25s.

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Mr Byford said his background is in agriculture and horticulture, while Crack on Foundation co-founder Gary Spencer is a chef by profession. They will teach the young people about where their food comes from and how to prepare it.

Also on board with the project is Michael Addison, who has a fitness background, Dave Muskett, who ran Nowton Farm, and Mr Byford’s partner Jodie Bull.

To support the project pop into one of the Crack on shops, in Bury, Ipswich, Newmarket and Watton, or visit Young people wanting to get involved should email Search for ‘Field of Dreams Farm’ on Facebook.