Care farming advice for non-farmers

You don't need an agricultral background to become a care farmer, but you may need some help with the practical aspects of farming.

Perhaps you work in education, health or social care and have been inspired to start care farming. You might have seen first-hand what a difference care farming can make to people and be keen to turn your idea into a reality.

Land access

The first thing to ask yourself is, do I have a site I can use? 

Land aquisition is often be one of the first hurdles to overcome when trying to set up a care farm. It is a broad subject and can differ from region to region, depending on the policies of your Local Authority. 

You could try working with a local farm and seeing if they can help, or use our map to find a care farm near you. 

The Community Land Advisory Service (CLAS) is hosted by Social Farms & Gardens and aims to increase community access to land, particularly for green space activities. CLAS is currently funded in Wales and you can find information on finding, buying, offering and leasing land.

Farming skills

If you have a site but are struggling with how to go about growing vegetables or keeping animals, local farming organisations may be able to help. You could also try land based further education colleges. Landex represents land based colleges and universites. 

Training and resources

Our free Principles of Care Farming video resource is a great place to start. For more in depth courses, take a look at care farming training on our events page. For quality assurance, our Green Care Quality Mark sets out the minimum standards that you should meet as a care farm or green care provider.

Become a member of Social Farms & Gardens as a prospective care farm. If you become a member you'll be able to access other resources that you might find useful, like the Starting a Care Farm checklist.

Take part in CEVAS training which is also recommended for people wanting to start in the care farming sector. 

Read through our tips on care farming governance, and check out the Gov.UK website for general business start up advice and information on legal structures.

Related articles

Care farming governance

Find out about the governance structures, processes and proceedures that you'll need to run a care farm or green care service.

Land and planning for care farming and green care

Land acquisition can differ from region to region. Find out where you can go to get help with land aquisition and planning. 

Care farming income and finances

Income and finances are an important part of care farming but they are not the main motivation for becoming a care farmer. 

What makes a care farm

Whether you grow crops or rear livestock, are rural or city-based, helping people with a defined need is key to care farming. 

Funding for setting up a care farm

Although there is no specific funding or setting up a care farm, find out how to access funds from different sources. 

Care farming advice for farmers

Advice for farmers interested in starting care farming. Tips, questions to ask and links to resources and training.