August 28, 2014
Working and spreading the word in our local communities
Agrii’s commitment to support the communities in which we work is no better demonstrated than through Mark Glover’s link with Hampshire Country Learning. Mark is an agronomist in our Larkwhistle team.
Hampshire County Learning is a not for profit organisation that enables over 3,000 school children, every year, to enjoy safe and educational visits to the working countryside, throughout Hampshire and the surrounding counties. The visits are free, ensuring as many pupils as possible are able to attend, making the countryside accessible to even the most deprived schools. The organisation, headed up by Jo Hatton, works with over forty farm businesses and coordinates visits between 10 and 180 pupils, of all ages.
The capacity to learn is never greater than when we are exposed to something real, and something we can relate to. This is exactly how Mark Glover organised his sessions when he volunteered at a Hampshire County Learning event in April this year. Mark was presented with 180 primary age children, albeit not all at once! The children were divided into groups of thirty, with each station lasting thirty minutes.
The purpose; make children more aware of where their food comes from, what happens on farm and how this contributes to the food they find in the kitchen at home.
Mark spilt the groups of thirty into four sub groups. Each had the opportunity to touch and examine a different seed. They would then have to try and work out what the seed was and what it could be used for. Following this the children had the chance to get ‘hands on’ and extract oil from oilseed rape.
The session gave continued opportunity for the children to be actively involved. The final task required the children to select supermarket items, such as cereal, biscuits, beer, toothpaste and vinegar, and place them in the correct shopping basket with each basket assigned to a particular crop.
Mark Glover will continue to support this initiative and explains ‘it is a very worthwhile experience to be able to share the information I have and put it back into the community’.
Jo Hatton, of Hampshire County Learning is always in need of volunteers and explains ‘the support from Mark and Agrii is invaluable to our organisation; we are always looking for volunteers, with or without Agricultural knowledge to contribute to our events. In these environments children have an unrivalled opportunity to learn and from what the teachers tell us these events are always well remembered and sought after’.