We Are FoodPioneers Slow Cooker Appeal

Please support We Are FoodPioneers new One Pot Project and help them to raise the £1,000 they need to buy and distribute slow cookers for those most in need.

Many people are struggling financially this year and feeling the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Referrals to local Food Banks have increased, more people are out of work and experiencing reduced incomes leading to job insecurity and fuel poverty that is set to increase. For many, this is a real and everyday challenge and for some of us, this year will be truly dire. Many individuals and families are eating cold food or meals that require only a kettle or a microwave, not out of choice, but out of necessity.

Slow cookers are a great solution to create healthy, hearty meals and whilst at the same time helping to tackle fuel poverty. Slow cookers typically use the same amount of electricity as a standard light bulb and much less than a hob, kettle, microwave or cooker, which of course not everyone has access to. A wide variety of foods can be cooked in a slow cooker, including one-pot meals, soups, stews and casseroles. Ingredients used to make the best slow cooker meals are inexpensive and cheaper cuts of meat can be made into delicious nutritious meals. The process of creating hot food is simple and meals can be stretched beyond a day and offer a sustainable way of cooking and eating well. They can be used for a whole variety of foods, much better than just pot noodles and a kettle.

What can we do to help?

We Are FoodPioneers are calling on friends, neighbours and the local community to help and support. Your donation will buy slow cookers to distribute to our neighbours across Worthing & Adur in partnership with our friends at Worthing Homes and the local Food Banks, ensuring we reach people who can benefit the most. We will provide a basic slow cooker to vulnerable families and individuals, allowing them to prepare nutritious winter warmer meals at low cost.

As well as providing slow cookers, we’ll include recipes, a simple how to guide and invite people, including yourselves, to share recipes, creations and inspiration with each other.

To donate to the appeal please visit their Crowdfunder page: https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/we-are-foodpioneers-slow-cooker-appeal

The Scrap Space Appeal

Our sister group in Shoreham, Over the Moon, who also run the Adur Repair Café, have just launched an appeal for a wonderful new project – The Scrap Space.

The Scrap Space project aims to bring a combined scrapstore and creative activity space to West Sussex, to encourage and inspire community, creativity and sustainability.

Over The Moon are fundraising towards costs of setting up and running a premises. Please support if you can: https://www.avivacommunityfund.co.uk/thescrapspace

Breathing Spaces in February

“Where would we be without flowers and trees, they lift the soul.” Dorothy.
We agree whole-heartedly with Dorothy, but it is February and it can seem a bit bleak and bare outside.

Certainly our ‘farm’ flowers are nowhere in sight, especially because we don’t use any additional heat in the polytunnel to force them into blooming this early. Winter flowers are around, understated but beautiful close-up and often luxuriously fragrant (see our Winter Blooms feature http://www.breathingspaces.co/blog).

If you are thinking of gifting some February Floral Love, please remember that many Valentines bunches this month have got an un-romantic carbon footprint, either from air-miles or heating or both. As an alternative you could ask for British sustainably grown flowers. There are commercial growers in Cornwall, Lincolnshire and our very own West Sussex Alstroemeria specialist, Crosslands Nursery, with lots of delightful options. Other artisan growers will have beautiful dried flowers from the summer (not the ones that are sprayed and dyed!). And if you can wait for warmer weather, we still have a couple of subscriptions available for our seasonal flowers and could even rustle up a gift voucher if required!

February/March is the end of the best planting time for new trees – the planet desperately needs more trees and so do we for our health and wellbeing. South Downs National Park Association is kindly gifting us some hedgerow saplings for the site in Sompting where we pick our wildflowers. We want to enable people to plant these with us but obviously that hasn’t been possible in the last couple of months.  With careful management we believe it is a fairly low risk activity, outdoors in a large space, but we are waiting until the Covid infection rates fall further. If you are interested in helping please let us know and we will be in touch in due course. Hopefully it won’t have to just be the two of us putting 200 saplings in the ground! We will register the planting with Countryfile’s excellent “Plant Britain” campaign, which you can also join in by planting a tree at home or at a community space. https://www.plantbritain.co.uk

[email protected]       www.breathingspaces.co

Progress at the EPIC Site in Sompting

Over the past eighteen months the Ouse & Adur Rivers Trust have been working on a scheme to enhance the water environment and increase landscape resilience for local wildlife.

The Enhancing Places, Inspiring Communities (EPIC) project has created a new 1km section of the Broadwater Brook, realigning its course under the Decoy Farm landfill and placing it across Sompting Brooks. The main works were completed in September 2019 and the results are already clear to see.

There have been over 450 species now recorded using the site (an increase of 300 since the project begun) including the Scarce Blue Tailed Damselfly (first record in Sussex in 125 years), Long Tailed Blue Butterfly (a rare migrant), Nomada zonata (a rare nomad bee species) and a rare hawkmoth. With two new ponds just constructed and 6.8ha of wildflower meadow recently sown there is high expectation that the site will attract a greater diversity of wildlife in the future.

The construction of the two silt traps and the top of the channel are collecting a lot of the pollutants coming from surrounding urban runoff and noticeable improvements to water quality are already being recorded.

One of the big successes of the project has been the involvement of the local community and many TTW members have also come along to lend a hand, in all over 1,000 residents have participated in over 150 events and activities put on by the project, many contributing to building the diverse habitats which are proving so successful.

With a hard surface track under construction the site being readied for opening to the public in Spring next year and there are still plenty of opportunities to get involved with hedge planting, willow hide construction and planting the ponds up.

To find out more and get involved with the next year of the project

Contact: [email protected]