Haskins Garden centre has donated £8,000 to Oasis Down to Earth Farm in Southampton, allowing the community charity to purchase much needed garden tools and carry out refurbishments to the animal enclosures.
The charity was nominated by Haskins team member Sophie Menjou from Haskins’ West End centre, who became aware of the charity through her work as a Cultivation Street Ambassador – a national campaign that promotes horticulture in the community. Sophie heard first-hand how the farm continues to have a positive impact on its many volunteers and wanted in return to ensure the farm receives the financial support it requires.
Jamie Haskins, member of the Haskins family, said: “We are delighted to make our first donation through the Haskins Charitable Fund. The Oasis Down To Earth Farm is a wonderful asset to the local community of Southampton, and we look forward to following their progress in the future.”
Oasis Down to Earth Farm provides people of all abilities and ages with the opportunity to learn and care for animals, as well as receiving health and wellbeing benefits through working on the farm’s allotment garden. Members of the community can help grow fruit and vegetables that is then sold locally. Children are also encouraged to visit the five-acre farm, either independently or as part of a school trip, to interact with animals and the natural environment.
Russell Farley, Farm Manager at Oasis Down to Earth Farm, added: “Thanks to the Haskins Charitable Fund we are able to purchase new garden tools and update fencing around our animal enclosures. This will benefit and enhance the experiences for our school visits, farmers with different abilities and weekend public visits.
“It’s brilliant to be able to have such a positive connection with Haskins, as a local organisation actively supporting the charitable work on our city farm.”
The Haskins Charitable Fund was set up in 2017 to benefit charities and community projects local to its four garden centres across the south, through personal nominations from its staff. The Haskins team of over 650 employees can nominate their chosen charity or local community project that will either benefit vulnerable children and their families, horticultural and environmental projects, or hospices and respite care providers, within a 15km radius to a Haskins centre.