Road Farm Countryways care farm wins GOLD ‘Make A Difference’ Award for Social Care
On Tuesday 22nd September, Andy Collins from BBC Three Counties Radio arrived at Road Farm and surprised Wendy Gray with the Make A Difference Award for Social Care for her tireless energy and enthusiasm providing opportunities for vulnerable people to participate in farm activities to improve their wellbeing and learning.
There was also a surprise personal video message from Charlotte Smith, host of the BBC Radio 4 Farming Today programme commending Wendy & Duncan Gray for their work.
Wendy was thrilled with the surprise award win and after the announcement had sunk in, she said, “THANK YOU so much for this! It’s such an encouragement. I must say thank you to everyone who supports us. This is a team effort, down to an amazingly wonderful husband and family and our wonderful team of volunteers.”
“We have people here of all different ages and stages who come out to the farm and get involved with the animals and they do all that as a way to help them feel better and be able to move on with their day.” Wendy added, “Some spend a lot of time being cared for by other people, but here they can come to the farm and give that care to something else.”
Countryways CIC welcomes young adults, those with physical or mental health issues, learning difficulties, a fortnightly Countrymen’s Club for older isolated gentlemen, Scout groups and other special interest groups among others to the farm. During the COVID-19 pandemic they have adapted and diversified so that they can continue to help those in need.
Countrymen at the farm
This week a small socially distanced group of ‘Countrymen’ met at the farm for a walk and to construct wooden bird boxes using reclaimed Edwardian floorboards, kindly supplied by Amersham Men’s Sheds. The Countrymen’s Club currently meets monthly and is an opportunity for gentlemen who have an interest or background in farming, or an interest in horticulture and the countryside, to get together and chat while being active on the farm. The Club helps men get out of the house and improve their health and wellbeing, and also provides their family carers opportunities for respite.