The Severn Project

We all hear a lot today about the importance of local severn project logoproduce – it reduces carbon emissions from transport, supports the local economy and gets food from farm to dinner table more quickly.

For the Severn Project, however, that’s not enough – so it’s also using local produce to help some of society’s most vulnerable people.

The social enterprise runs two urban farms in Bristol, providing training, education and employment opportunities for people recovering from drug and alcohol misuse, people with poor mental health and people with offending backgrounds.

Since May 2010, it has helped over 350 people and now delivers to over 80 restaurants, shops and distributors in the region. It’s also converted 8.5 acres of disused land into urban farmland, contributing to wildlife and diversity.

severn project photoTo help these vulnerable people become even more independent, the Severn Project is also a hub from which people who want to become self-employed satellite growers can access equipment, land, machinery, storage, business support and a route to market. Some of the apprentices from vulnerable backgrounds go on to become satellite growers.

All profit is reinvested in helping people, and the Project hopes to open a farm shop and café, issue Community Shares and develop a residential programme for people with a history of substance abuse.