The Dutch PROFARM Network

The Dutch PROFARM Network

De Groenewelle and the Dutch Foundation of Innovation Welfare 2 Work have set up a ProFarm network in the Netherlands. De Groenwelle made a lot of initial contacts with social farmers in ‘Het Vechtdal’. Around 10 social farmers were invited for our first meeting in January 2017. Care professionals, people from school and the local government were invited as well. While building up the network, we have made use of the profession and knowledge of the cooperation Landbouw en Zorg Overijssel.

In June 2017 we had our first PROFARM meeting with 5 socials farmers in Barneveld and later on in September we had a even bigger meeting with 8 social farmers, again in Barneveld. We decided to organize a meeting for social farmers from all over the country in November 2017. 20 social farmers spoke about  their good practices and the challenges and obstacles they face… What does a social farm look like in the most desirable way? What are the characteristics of the different groups and ages of students? What is required for good, qualitative education on a farm?

For ProFarm we will develop educational farms in a sustainable way, which will continue after the end of the ProFarm project. We can make ProFarm innovative to develop educational farms, because we have already made a great shift on farms by going into the direction of social farms, including different kinds of education. Now the next step is to continue progress to include ways of formal learning that makes it possible for students to finish a certain level of education by receiving certificates or (and that’s what we prefer) a diploma.

There is a lot to explore about the different kinds of education social farmers will combine with their work on the farm…

Read more at the PROFARM website and more importantly, join us at our PROFARM Conference in Zwolle 22-25 April 2018: See you there !

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