Brenda Sutcliffe recently received her award for her long-term campaign seeking recognition of the damage done to farmers by toxic organophosphate sheep dips.
Her friend and fellow-campaigner, Margaret Percival, hosted the happy event at Leylands Farm on the Wigan/Salford border.
India’s educational NGOs such as CERE in Mumbai, which works extensively with schools, will be interested to hear that Margaret and her husband John, after being asked to help a troubled youngster – now a fine young man – decided to open their farm to city children for reasons set out below in an extract from a report which can be read here.
Two thirds of pupils with rural experiences are interested in where their food comes from; children without rural experiences are twice as likely to admit they didn’t know where food like rhubarb or spinach comes from; many of the children studied in more depth could only suggest that their food came from shop shelves or city centres, rather than tracking back through the food chain; hands-on experiences don’t only provide pupils with a better grasp of where food starts out, they also makes them more likely to want to eat those foods – studies have shown that children who are given a taste of growing vegetables develop positive appetites for their produce . . .
A number of placements are available for young people aged 13-19 years who are interested in working with animals and learning about farming, gardening and horticulture. AQA Units can also be obtained in Health & Safety on the Farm, Caring for Animals with Assistance, Livestock Management & Animal Husbandry/Poultry.
If politicians in India and Britain could have been given such experiences in their youth, perhaps food producers would now be better served.
Time for change!