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BATH CITY FARM

Set on a hillside on the south west side of Bath, Bath City Farm occupies a wonderful 37 acre site with panoramic views of the city. The Farm's green space is free for everyone to use, and is also an important community asset, offering adult education courses, volunteering placements and several projects that are designed to help people combat issues of mental ill-health, drug dependency, social isolation and unemployment. Our mission is to build a caring, healthy and cohesive community through the involvement of local people in the development and maintenance of a productive green space, where they are able to learn about sustainable farming and food growing, acquire new skills and develop new friendships. Bath City Farm provides a quiet place in which people feel a greater sense of contentment. We strive to offer care for the whole person, whether their needs are practical, emotional or social.

Updated:
3 February 2017
Location:
South West
Sectors:
Charity, Children Young People and Students, Community organisations, Education Sector, Health, Hospitality, Membership Organisations, Recreation, Retail, Schools, Social Care, Voluntary, Voluntary Sector
Local Alliances:
Bath & North East Somerset

1. Action Plan

1. The National Dementia Declaration lists seven outcomes that the DAA are seeking to achieve for people with dementia and their carers. How would you describe your organisation’s role in delivering better outcomes for people with dementia and their carers?

Bath City Farm provides a beautiful, welcoming environment for visitors of all ages and needs. We provide a range of horticultural activities for adults, including those who have experienced issues with their mental health. Our gardening projects do cater for adults with dementia, though this is something we are keen to develop further.  We also run Feathered Friends – a project specifically targeted at the over 60s which has been running for 2 years. It is a practical chicken keeping/cuddling project for the over 60s which, as part of the weekly activities, offers group visits from local care homes. These visits invite small groups of people, many with dementia, to the farm to enjoy the amazing views, meet our friendly chickens and other animals and enjoy a homemade afternoon tea.  The sessions offer the benefits of spending active time in the open air, together with the chance for socialising and the sensory stimulation provided by contact with the animals. As an open access site, the farm enables people to feel part of a welcoming, vibrant and diverse community, and we hope by expanding the opportunities we offer to people with dementia we will be helping to increase understanding of the condition.

2. What are the challenges to delivering these outcomes from the perspective of your organisation?

We have faced two main challenges in offering activities for people with dementia. Firstly transport and facilitating easy access the site. For Feathered Friends we have relied on a Bath Community Transport vehicle and a volunteer driver being available to bring visitors to site. We would like to find a more regularly reliable means for transporting visitors to and from sessions, and would be keen to work with other DAA organisations/individuals to facilitate this.  The second challenge has been having appropriately experienced people to support people with dementia in sessions.  At present one member of staff supports a group of volunteers with wide-ranging needs, and it can be challenging to offer the level of support someone with dementia may need to carry out tasks successfully and in a rewarding way. It would good to engage with dementia friendly volunteers who may be able to attend sessions and offer additional support.  

2. Actions

  • FEATHERED FRIENDS - practical and social session for the over 60s

    We plan to develop the Feathered Friends project to enable it to engage individuals with dementia, as well as offering group visits from care homes in Bath. 

    Status:
    Planning
  • SUPPORTING AND WORKING WITH THE DAA

    The farm would like to become an active member of our local DAA.

    Status:
    Planning
  • DEMENTIA FRIENDS

    We will register the farm as an organisation with Dementia Friends, as part of our ambition to make the staff and volunteers more aware of the needs of people living with dementia, and to enable us to work together to create a more dementia-friendly site and offering.

    Status:
    Planning