Visiting Surrey Docks Farm, Lord Henry Plumb, founder of the charity, met the first recipient Tom Goody who, as a volunteer at the farm, has the ambition to become a farmer.
As an HPF apprentice Tom will receive funding, and be mentored by farmer and Worshipful Company of Farmers Liveryman Edward Hitchcock, while he works towards his Level 3 work-based Diploma in Animal Care (KEITS).
“We are delighted to offer Tom this apprenticeship,” said Lord Plumb.
“It really sums up what we are all about: to be able to help young people with enthusiasm and ideas and give them the confidence to make a difference to their own lives. From all I have learnt about Tom, I am sure he will take full advantage of this unique opportunity to progress in this great industry.”
As a working farm in the heart of London, with livestock including cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, rabbits and chicken, Surrey Docks Farm has around 80 regular volunteers and, open all year round, receives approximately 50,000 visitors. The farm also offers visitors the opportunity to learn about farming and food production, runs training projects for adults with learning disabilities and a range of youth clubs.
“It was a pleasure to welcome Lord Plumb to the farm,” says Surrey Docks Farm Community Projects Manager, Gemma Hooper. “Tom joined us several years ago and works with great dedication and enthusiasm, and so we are delighted, thanks to the support of the Henry Plumb Foundation, to be able to offer him an apprenticeship. I am also delighted that we have formed a long term relationship with the Foundation allowing us to submit a candidate each year for support, helping us to support our City Farms network as well as supporting young people coming into the industry.”
In a bid to help young farmers with business and study, Lord Plumb is working with a team of trustees and advisors to develop the Henry Plumb Foundation as a lasting legacy of encouragement and support for those keen to establish or further-develop their future in the industry.
Its target is to raise £2million, with the annual income used to provide scholarships and bursaries to young people and a mentoring network, all to deliver against key aims including to target young people (18-35) who may demonstrate flair in the field of communication and leadership and give them the skills to contribute more effectively for the good of the wider public and to provide the means, through education and training, to enable young people to think broadly and to present ideas that will drive future food agricultural and environmental development for the good of the general population.
Apply for a grant – become a mentor
Anyone interested in applying for support, becoming a mentor, or seeking to support the Foundation should start by visiting the Henry Plumb Foundation website. To apply, or find out about becoming a mentor, visit: www.thehenryplumbfoundation.org.uk