The Bexhill Family Collective CIC was originally formed as a direct response to East Sussex County Council's decision to close 15 children's centres and 2 children centre nurseries. We opened our Community Nursery in March 2021.
The pandemic and cost of living crisis has provoked us to extend our commitment to the families of Bexhill by providing free family activities, and we opened a Community Pantry/warm space in January 2023.
Our organisation works to ensure that barriers to education, work and leisure are removed for Local families. Our community nursery is fairly priced with no hidden small print so parents know what they need to pay and when. We work with families to support them and refer them to other services. We also work to ensure that barriers to education are removed by giving every child a rich curriculum full of local and cultural experiences so that all children start school on a level playing field.
More recently, we have recognised our unique situation and position to help adults and families during the cost-of-living and climate emergency crisis. Alongside our food distribution offer, we have now opened up a "warm space". This is not just for families who are struggling to heat their homes, but also for those who wish to reduce their carbon footprint and share energy rather than heat a separate space. Our Community Pantry offer prevents food going to landfill and in turn reduces local food waste.
Our vision of for The Collective Community garden if for local people and community groups to foster collaborative thinking to solve the problems that our facing all people in the future. We aim to create a safe haven where people can come together to spend time outdoors, take part in planting, growing, ecological, bushcraft and craft activities.
We see the effects of the cost of living crisis and the pandemic through our work on a daily basis. Our community pantry sees in excess of 30 families visit each week and we hope to sustain this offer for as long as we are needed. A percentage of the crops generated will be shared with our community pantry so that those who attend have access to fruit and vegetables.
We know that more needs to be done locally to instill a pride in our community. We will engage with all ages in our society and bring young people and local people on the journey with us, keeping them fully informed and part of the development. In turn we hope to reduce the likelihood of vandalism, theft and fly tipping in the area.
This area has been neglected for a number of years, with residents viewing an area used for flytipping from their homes. We are crowdfunding in order to renovate this site and run a range of activities such as forest school, planting and growing sessions, youth work, mindfulness groups and many more. We are planning for the site to be environmentally sustainable, including planting a significant amount of hedgerow to support bees, birds and local wildlife.
Your donation will cover the initial cost of the annual rent, insurance, staff training, plants and tools. Any money that we raise in addition to our target will be used to pay for making individual allotment spaces for community groups and resources to run weekly activities at The Collective Community Garden.