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Title: Community-based Social Farming and its educational functions

The socio-economic diversity of rural areas results in disproportional de- velopment of agriculture. It forces farmers and rural area inhabitants to undertake ac- tions taking account of the dynamically changing farming conditions. The Małopolskie Voivodship is characterised by fragmented agriculture, which − if it cannot effectively compete on the market − satisfies the farm’s own basic needs. Expansion of farming ac- tivities with additional functions is a chance for small farms. An example of such a devel- opment direction of fragmented farms is social farming. The idea behind it is farming in rural areas, which combines agriculture, social services, health-promoting services, and education. This is also an opportunity for those farmers, who already conduct operations in the non-agricultural industry (e.g. agritourism) and can expand their range of services with social services. European models of this kind of farming are regionally differentiat- ed and rely on a leading function, e.g. care farm, educational farm and others. The basis of the innovative model Community-based Social Farming (CSF) presented in the article is social farming. The research method refers to the sociological method “verstehen” of Max Weber, and the conceptual tool is the “ideal type”. The project is implemented in the pilot Social Farm “Oaza pod Lasem” (“Oasis by the Forest”) in Daleszyn. The CSF com- bines many forms of operations, as well as involves various entities and engages the local community in its activities. It is based on the use of endogenous resources; it expands the scope of income sources of not only farmers, but also other rural inhabitants with a specific capital. The model is universal, is recommended in rural areas characterised by fragmentation. It offers social services corresponding to the needs of various social groups. The article more broadly discusses the educational functions performed by the CSF as part of the Educational Social Farm (ESF)

Language: English
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