The Farming Community Network (FCN) charity is helping to support farmers throughout Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire, following Beds and Cambs Rural Support Group ceasing operations earlier this year.

A new Beds and Cambs FCN volunteer group has been formed, with supporters of the Beds and Cambs Rural Support Group joining as volunteers, along with many new faces to help support farmers through difficult times across both counties.

FCN is looking for additional volunteers from across Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire to join the group in anticipation of an increasing demand on FCN’s services over the coming months and years as farmers adapt to changing agricultural policy and plan ahead for the future of their farm businesses.

FCN is a voluntary organisation and charity that supports farmers and families within the farming community through difficult times. Trained volunteers provide free, confidential, pastoral and practical support to anyone who seeks help, regardless of whether the issue is personal or business-related.

FCN supports approximately 6,000 people each year with a wide range of issues, including animal disease, mental ill-health and family disputes.

Sally Peck is one of the new volunteers with FCN’s Beds and Cambs Group. Sally was previously part of Beds and Cambs Rural Support Group for a number of years.

Sally said: “Along with members of the Beds and Cambs Rural Support Group, I am so pleased to be partnering with FCN in establishing the Beds and Cambs FCN Group.

“Since its inception in 1999, by our founder Anne Marie Hamilton MBE, Beds and Cambs Rural Support Group worked tirelessly offering help to farmers and members of the rural community by listening and providing appropriate guidance and support when needed. Merging with FCN will ensure this vital service continues in both counties for many years to come. Thank you, FCN!”

Jude McCann, FCN’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “I am delighted the FCN Beds & Cambs Group has been established on the ground to help the farm community across both counties, following the winding down of Beds and Cambs Rural Support Group. As our industry undergoes significant change, many farming families will require additional support.

“FCN’s volunteers are knowledgeable about the sector and understand the pressures that can come with farming life. We look forward to working closely with our new volunteers and ensuring farmers across Beds and Cambs know that help is still available.”

FCN and members of the new group look forward to seeing people at the Gransden Show in Cambridgeshire on 25 September.

To learn more about volunteering with FCN visit https://fcn.org.uk/volunteering/

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