Projects Funded in Round 6

We are very pleased to announce that from 53 applications we are able to fund 22 new projects in Round 6, the final round of EF’s grant-giving programme. Congratulations to all these projects and we look forward to following their progress during the coming year.

See below for a list of the projects that were funded:

Eldership in the Community

Owen Stevens / The Big Room (CIC) 

The programme aims to develop the skills and psycho-spiritual maturity to facilitate conflict, difference and polarisations between and within individuals and communities. It provides the space for individuals and communities to confront difficult and often seemingly impossible conversations – to reveal that which the dominant culture has excluded, marginalised, or hidden from mainstream view. The programme addresses underlying relational narratives and perspectives which foment social and environmental breakdown.

Following successful pilots, the programme leads 18 selected participants through 9 months of workshops, which include group interaction and mentorship, to support them in bringing their eldership into their communities. Those cover mental health, teaching, addiction recovery, LGBTQ+, homelessness, environmental and immigration issues. 

Beneficiaries: 18 course participants plus secondary beneficiaries predominantly from NW England.

Kyra Calmness Project

Eimear Bush / Kyra Women’s Project (ORG)

Kyra supports women in York and the surrounding area to change their lives for the better. by It provides a holistic, non-medical approach to support and empower women who have reached an impasse in their lives due to either health challenges, domestic abuse, loss or loneliness; or because life changes have required them to move to a new place and start over. At the deepest level it seeks to mend lives, and help women live to their fullest potential, enhancing their family, work, and community life.

There are four complementary elements: planting and learning about medicinal herbs, cooking and nutrition; sound healing, and mindfulness.

Beneficiaries: Approximately124 women in York (UK).

Yoga and Mindfulness for Children and Young People – Year 3

Dominique DeLight / Well Balanced Kids (ORG) 

This project addresses physical and mental health in low income, vulnerable children, and those with physical and learning disabilities. It challenges the materialistic and consumerist messaging in society that has led to an increase in obesity and mental health issues. Based in Brighton and Hove, this project builds on past experiences and previous evaluations to provide yoga, mindfulness and themed sessions, to enable participants to recognise their own internal resources and learn new practices.

Two previous applications to EF have been supported. The aim is to make the project sustainable through further funding and fees, plus the production of 10 videos to extend their reach. 

Beneficiaries: 24-30 vulnerable yoApproximately 105 participants in live sessions; videos viewed multiple times; 103 sessions held across locations in UK.

Tackling Social isolation for people living with cancer

Miquel Leon Canete / Yestolife (ORG) 

This project builds on previous EF funding and aims to provide a new service to create a supportive, understanding community of survivors, and to make the experience of a cancer diagnosis less daunting through a peer-to-peer service. YTL will match participants with shared experiences in order for them to find a common ground. This helps rebuild the identity and confidence of those who may feel isolated from family and friends after their initial cancer diagnosis, or during treatment. The aim is to reduce social isolation and improve well-being and quality of life. The programme will identify volunteers and train peer supporters to provide the service. 

Beneficiaries: Approximately 250 beneficiaries and 80 volunteers from London and South east of UK.

Touching Safe Ground

Esther Cann / Globe Community Project (ORG) 

Building on previous EF funding, the project is aimed at women who’ve experienced traumatic upheaval, whether as refugees or through being trafficked. It’s designed to give them access to a supportive community where they can re-establish a sense of belonging, both within their own bodies and in relation to others in the community. It brings together therapeutic, trauma-sensitive yoga; innovative beginners ‘survival’ English language and a safe space for community building.

Through working in collaboration with a local GP surgery’s progressive social prescribing service, the project will help these women find safety, support and community, as well as teaching them practical new skills, building their confidence to equip them for the next stage of their journey. 

Beneficiaries: Approximately 25 newly arrived adult women living in temporary ‘dispersal accommodation’ in Bethnal Green, who are patients at a local GP surgery and awaiting their asylum decision. (UK).

Companion: Together in Bread and Song

Harriette Ashcroft / Singalongsongs (CIC) 

The project provides a programme of inclusive and participant-led breadmaking and singing activities for 30-40 adults with learning difficulties. Following on from the Covid-19 pandemic, the project addresses the need of vulnerable adults to reintegrate with community and improve their sense of confidence, efficacy, and self-esteem.

The programme aims to support participants’ physical, mental and emotional well-being through a multi-layered approach, with bread-making providing opportunities to learn new skills, learn about healthy food and take part in therapeutic mindful reflection. Singing activities will provide opportunities for creative self-expression, confidence-building, and integrating into the wider community. 

Beneficiaries: Approximately 40 adults with a learning disability or experiencing mental health issues (UK).

Growing Harmony

Jane Sweetman / Plotgate Community Benefit Society (CSA)

This project at Plotgate Community Farm in Somerset consists of holding 4x Open Day events, 40x Volunteering days, 2x 2-day residential workshop events, and 4x Residential Season (24-week) traineeships, all with the aim of providing opportunities for people to participate in the sustainable food movement at different levels of engagement

.Activities will include developing skills for sustainable farming and agroecological food production, as well other activities such as natural-material craft workshops, poetry and song-writing. 

Beneficiaries: 4 residential trainees, 40 attendees at workshops, 200 at open day events, and 6 volunteer day participants. (UK).

Community Climate Voices

Bernadette Calvey / Cumbria Action for Sustainability (ORG)

The project aims to recruit and train 2 cohorts of community climate advocates to work within their local Cumbrian communities. Each cohort will receive carbon literacy training, train-the-trainer support, and further training from the Centre for Alternative Technology. They will be supported and work alongside the existing volunteers to deliver a range of climate science training, climate conversations and other activities based on their strengths and circumstances. The project will focus on areas of high economic deprivation: lessons learned from the first stage of their previous EF grant found that focusing on these areas has the most impact. 

Beneficiaries: 20 new volunteers to work alongside 17 existing volunteers, with the aim of reaching approximately 700-1000 people (UK).

Write By You

Sarah Tinsley / (CIC Startup)

The Write By You project provides an opportunity for girls from diverse/disadvantaged backgrounds in Haringey, N. London to work with professional writers to develop their skills, voice and confidence. 20 participants will take part in 5 workshops with writers from different genres, learning practical skills, exploring identity and self-expression. After the workshops, they will submit a piece of writing and receive feedback and coaching from a Lead Writer. These pieces will be collated into an anthology, with a final celebration event, inviting family, friends and members of the community. Anthologies will be available for sale, and all participants will also submit a piece of work to a national writing competition. 

Beneficiaries: 20 girls and non-binary individuals, aged 12-18 (UK).

Circles of Active Hope – Facilitator Training

Madeleine Young (INDIV) 

This project draws on the existing resources of Chris Johnstone’s Round 4 funded scheme ‘Active Hope Training: A Free Online Course for Positive Change’, and aims to train facilitators to lead and sustain groups delivering this work. Active Hope seeks to counter our fragmented society by using an established model which brings people together in mutual support to help them find each other’s unique contribution to positive change in this world.

There will be 4 trainings, each one consisting of 8 fortnightly webinars for an established group of 16 people. A companion online forum offers space to discuss issues, enabling sharing and co-creative agency. Highlights from the webinars will be edited to create a free online resource for people wanting to lead such groups in the future. 

Beneficiaries: Approximately 64 participants (UK).

Finding Our Voice – Women free from the effects of male violence

Alison Manning / Coaching for Women (INDIV)

Media reports in the last year have shown that male violence towards women is still prevalent, yet women who have endured it often find once the initial crisis has passed, they are left to struggle alone with the long-term aftermath on a physical and emotional level. ‘Finding Our Voice’ aims to bridge this support gap for women, helping them to address the deep and lasting negative impact of their experience.

The project will work with 64 women who have experienced male abuse, but who are no longer in crisis (4 cohorts of 16). Each cohort will be given 2x intensive weekends and a 6-week online course, creating a safe and confidential space to share their experience and explore issues such as how the abuse has led them to compromise and limit themselves; how to make different choices without fear, guilt or shame; and how to find their voice and become confident to use it. This application follows 2 previously funded grants from EF. 

Beneficiaries: 64 women from E. London, of all ages, ethnicities, religion, race or disabilities (UK).

The Bridge Group

Jon French / Face Front Inclusive Theatre (ORG) 

This organisation is based in outer N. London, offering theatre and arts-based activities coupled with support to local residents experiencing isolation and/or disabilities. Their aim is to enable people “to grow, unlock (their) hidden potential, discover new friends and a sense of community”.

Their application is to run a series of free weekly workshops over 3 terms. These would be led by experienced artists and staff and be centred on drama, singing and movement activities. Each term would run for 10 weeks. The Group works closely with local agencies including, the local MIND for referrals and mutual help. 

Beneficiaries: Up to 16 per term with between 30-42 in total. (UK).

Nature Voices: An Encounter with the Natural World

Mary Acton Adams / Meanwhile Gardens Community Assn (ORG) 

This programme will offer disadvantaged residents and those with health needs in an Inner London borough, a valuable and restorative pathway. It is described as “learning how to listen to the natural world and appreciate its healing powers” and takes place in a community garden centre.

It offers participants a comprehensive series of activities. Prominent among these are garden walks and growing foods, accompanied by reflection on our relationship with the natural world. Other activities include creative writing and craft work, tai chi and chi gong. These will be led by a highly experienced organiser with specialists in particular skills also brought in. The workshops will loosely follow the seasons, with new groups beginning as the season changes, but existing participants continuing through.

The workshops will be 2-hours per week, running during 2022. The organisation works with a local surgery to get referrals for those with health needs. 2 previous applications to EF have been supported. 

Beneficiaries: Between 18-36 participants, mostly taking part in more than one set of workshops (UK).

The Climate Change Poetry Challenge

Cath Drake (INDIV) 

This project is led by a woman who is both an environmental scientist and poet. The ‘Poetry Challenge’ is to engage “emerging and experienced” poets in writing about climate change through a series of workshops, and also a dedicated Facebook [fb] group page. The aim is “to grow a poetry community writing about all aspects of climate change that is active, supportive, nurturing and innovative”.

There will be input from both guest scientists and well-known poets. At the end of each course, there will be an online ‘public’ reading with friends and family invited. The Facebook page will be used for both building a sense of community and displaying writing. There will also be videos of poetry readings posted on YouTube.

This project is a means of building both resilience and creative thinking in the face of the challenge of climate change, and as having benefits beyond those taking part. 

Beneficiaries: Approximately 35 people plus 50-100 on the FB page (UK).

The ‘Rights of Nature in Practice’ Workshops

Susie Talbot (INDIV)

The workshops are a series of gatherings which bring together lawyers and others interested in learning more about the emerging global rights of nature movement, and exploring how its key principles and cases could be applied to other areas of the law. These include human rights, children’s rights, and corporate accountability. The aim is to expand legal imagination and strengthen legal skills; to learn about concrete examples of innovative ‘rights of nature’ legal developments from around the world, and how to apply them; to build a RoN legal practice community; to generate collective action towards transformative environmental and social change. 

Beneficiaries: Approximately 30-45 lawyers; 3 practitioners acting as co-facilitators; the general public, particularly lawyers, academics, law students and communities affected by current environmental challenges.

Plant-based food enterprise for young people

Ekowa Paul (INDIV)

Peng Patties is a project conceived, designed and co-created by secondary school-age young people mainly from Hackney and Haringey in London. Dishes chosen by young people will be cooked together using the vegan healthy recipes of the Rastafari founder chef, with a focus on Caribbean patty and burger skills. The aim is to give young people the skills and experience of running a small enterprise, to give them support for their life experiences, and to develop a change in mindset to plant-based food for their future health and the planet’s health. 

Beneficiaries: Young people, especially boys, living in Hackney, Tottenham, Haringey, Islington, Dagenham & Barking (UK).

Nurture and Grow: Wildlife Haven for Children and Parent-Carers

Olivia Lowe / Walk the Loop (ORG) 

The project aims to help a dedicated area in Pimp Hall Nature Reserve in Chingford, London become a haven for wildlife by growing and nurturing flowers and plants that will benefit insects, birds, bats etc. 12 families with young children aged 0-8 from the local community will be invited to join in up to 16 x 2-hour educational events/activities over 8 months. Gradually they will be encouraged to take care of the area themselves.

Beneficiaries: 12 families participating in regular activities (UK).

Climate Emergence Wellbeing Membership

Jo Musker Sherwood (INDIV) 

The project will support climate activists to develop more integrated and resilient approaches to their campaigning activities. It particularly aims to meet the needs of those under-represented in the climate movement, i.e., grassroots, and voluntary activists who do not often have an umbrella organisation that can pay for the services of a resilience specialist. Activists will be supported to value self-care as an integral part of planet care. They will be given tools for greater empathy and self-understanding and encouraged to strengthen the connection between their work and their spirituality.

Beneficiaries: Approximately 100 in workshops, and 120+ at fortnightly workshops. (UK).

Foldingchair dialogues

Renata Keller (INDIV) 

The aim of this project is to visit towns and villages in Europe in order to listen and talk with people, to give them a voice, hear their concerns, and to think collaboratively about the future we want to create in an atmosphere of trust. The core idea is to break the isolation and powerlessness that ordinary people feel. At the end of each session there will be an artistic ritual of commitment to next practical steps amongst the participants. A website will accompany this project with blogs and short video clips that will serve as a reflective platform, and support a growing community where shared learning and exchange can take place. 

Beneficiaries: Young men and women worried about our future: approximately 500-1000; concerned adults: c1000-3000 (Switzerland, Germany, Spain and Italy).

The Youth Climate Resilience & Regeneration Learning Journey

Laureline Simon / OneResilientEarth gGmbH (ORG) 

A high percentage of European youth are extremely worried about climate change. This educational project based in Germany provides the knowledge, tools, and a community to grow individual resilience. Youth can reduce their eco-anxiety and limit climate change impacts through collaborative and regenerative practices. The programme will offer a series of 5x interactive, online workshops for a 500+ audience, co-designed with youth and delivered by experts in education, eco-psychology, mindfulness, futures literacy, regenerative agriculture, and Indigenous Peoples’ knowledge systems. Participants’ access to an online community platform will support collaboration, while video recordings and online communication will help reach a wider audience. 

Beneficiaries: English-speaking students concerned about climate change (UK, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Holland, Israel, Italy, Ireland, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland).

FLINTS Coastal Permaculture Children and Caregivers’ Group

Newton See / Newgate Gap (CIC Startup) 

This is a local initiative based in Cliftonville, Kent, a town with a large migrant population which has been designated one of the most deprived areas in the UK. The project aims to bring local people together, beyond differences such as ethnicity, age, gender etc and help connect its residents, particularly the children and young people, to heart-led, supportive activities.

The programme offers 32 sessions and monthly offerings of personal growth workshops. It will also set up a no-dig coastal permaculture food garden. Multilingual group members and translation aids will increase outreach to the diverse migrant communities. The structure of activities and free play will follow Rudolf Steiner’s concept of rhythm of ‘Breathing In’ and ‘Breathing Out’. 

Beneficiaries: Approximately 640 adult places and 960 child places generally from the Cliftonville, Thanet area of Kent (UK).

Nature Works: Deep outdoor learning for young people in need

Tom Wigston / Wildwise Enterprises (CIC) 

The project, which has already been piloted, intends to involve 30 disadvantaged 16-25 year-olds in S. Devon in the natural world through a series of day-long workshops in a woodland setting. Delivered by trained practitioners, the programme would offer “outdoor skills, nature awareness and youth mentorship”. It is intended for young people with “a deficit of self-confidence, nature connection, sense of purpose and/or mental well-being” Benefits such as health and well-being, greater sense of one’s own capabilities, appreciation of nature and the need to protect and sustain the environment are identified. Participants will be invited to join as volunteers to support future workshops.

Beneficiaries: 30 x 16-25 year-olds (UK).