AWF & MindFood: Helping Young People Grow

A Buckinghamshire-based social enterprise became the latest charity to be supported by a Foundation set up in memory of the late singer Amy Winehouse.

The Amy Winehouse Foundation was thrilled to donate £6,000 to the MindFood Community Interest Company (CIC), in order to support young people from London and the capital’s surrounding counties. Based on a 16-acre farm in Amersham, MindFood provides people with mental health issues and disadvantaged young people with the opportunity to learn how to sow, plant and grow a wide range of crops in a supportive and therapeutic environment.

Ciaran Biggins, the co-founder of MindFood, said: ‘Many of the young people we work with are living in chaotic and claustrophobic urban environments, with little chance of finding a calm and safe space in which to learn and develop.

‘The Amy Winehouse Foundation’s support will allow us to develop our Food 4 Thought programme, which helps to prevent young people from reaching ‘breaking point’ in their lives by providing them with a natural and therapeutic environment. There, they can make friends, earn qualifications, feel rewarded and learn transferable skills in how to grow and market food. They will literally see the fruits of their own labor.’

Amy’s father Mitch visited the project with his wife Jane and said: ‘What struck us was Mind Food’s unique approach. Many of those kids growing up in urban areas have little, if any, access to green spaces yet spending time in the outdoors has a real benefit for their health and wellbeing. And not only will the project have a positive effect on the way they think and feel, they’ll gain qualifications in the process’.

For more information about MindFood (including how to buy their produce), visit: www.mindfood.org.uk.

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