Jennie Street & Anita Ollerenshaw
Managing Director & Rhubarb Farm Manager
Rhubarb Farm offers work placements, training and volunteering opportunities to people with long-term issues, or people who want to learn about growing their own fruit and vegetables. We offer support to people who are ex-offenders, have mental ill health, physical ill health, learning disability, physical disability, dementia, are school students struggling with their behaviour at school, are recovering drug or alcohol misusers, or are ex-service personnel with PTSD. Although we are not totally wheelchair-accessible because of rough ground, several wheelchair-users come weekly to site, and are not deterred by this.
We accept people whatever their support needs, and abilities, and provide group or one-to-one support depending on need. Everyone who comes to Rhubarb Farm is a volunteer, no matter what their needs or abilities - everyone can make a contribution.
Community Interest Company
Company no 7059841
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Kieran receiving Easter eggs donated by Derbyshire County Council
Mesbah receiving her food bag
At lockdown, Rhubarb Farm closed to all volunteers on 23rd March. 10 staff continued to work on site, to maintain our horticultural production, and to adapt our work to providing food bags for people in need, and cooked meals for older people. Staff kept weekly contact with all our volunteers during lockdown, to help them through the isolation and support their resilience in coping with the situation.
We have been delivering about 55 food bags every Friday, and 25 cooked meals every Monday. We have also continued to supply our regular veg bag customers, who all come to collect them on Fridays or Saturday mornings.
Rhubarb Farm receives food every week from Fareshare which is the main source of food for our food bags. But we also receive donations of food from Morrisons of Bolsover, and Tesco of Clowne. In addition, through the support of grants, we buy toiletries to add to the bags, and some vegetables when available from our site.
We have lost a lot of income as a result of losing paying placements, and so have had to apply for a lot of grants.
We have received grants from the following funders, and wish to express our thanks for all their support during this time:
Feeding Derbyshire, Local Improvement Scheme of Nottinghamshire County Council, Coalfields Regeneration Trust, Alpkit Foundation, Charities Aid Foundation, The Fore, Tesco Bags of Help, Aviva Community Fund, Bolsover Connect, Community Leadership Fund of Derbyshire County Council, Bolsover COVID-19 Recovery Fund. We were rejected by several other funders, as the demand for financial help has been huge and funders cannot help all voluntary sector organisations. In addition, we received a £10,000 grant from Bassetlaw District Council because we have a business rateable value. This and the grants we received have helped us sustain the enterprise and continue to work during the pandemic.
We furloughed 7 staff and 2 staff worked from self-isolation. The Job Retention Scheme has enabled us to keep our staff in employment although we have had to make one staff member redundant, because not all our posts are funded.
Since 26th May we have very gradually been bringing volunteers back to site. This has to be a very slow process because of the need to maintain and manage social distancing, hand hygiene and general hygiene. We received a grant to install an outdoor sink, which has helped with this. During lockdown staff re-organised three different buildings: the office became the new shop and Community Pantry. The Men in Sheds container became the new office, and the shop became the new Men in Sheds building! The Mess Room was also refurbished, and distancing and hygiene measures installed.
Rhubarb Farm is resilient, flexible and well-organised and we have high hopes that we will be able to maintain our services and continue to help vulnerable people to change their lives for the better.
Fuad receiving his food bag
Bob receiving his food bag
Mark’s mother receiving her food bag
Sarah receiving her food bag
Rhubarb Farm CIC
Hardwick Street, Langwith NG20 9DR
Tel 01623 741210
Company number 7059841
© 2018 Rhubarb Farm