Rhubarb Farm boss handed prestigious award for extraordinary work

Jennie Street.
Jennie Street.

A woman who set up a horticultural project in Nottinghamshire to help vulnerable people in the East Midlands has been awarded a prestigious Local Legend Award as part of the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards.

Jennie Street, Managing Director of Rhubarb Farm, joined a host of stars from the world of stage and screen at a glittering ceremony on BBC One, hosted by TV presenter and former Strictly winner Ore Oduba.

The 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards are the annual search for the UK’s favourite National Lottery funded people and projects and they celebrate the inspirational exploits of the ordinary people who do extraordinary things with National Lottery support.

Jennie Street received the East Midlands National Lottery Legend Award for her work with Rhubarb Farm, her therapeutic horticultural social enterprise she launched in Nether Langwith.

Rhubarb Farm provides supported work placements, training and volunteering opportunities for people with long-term needs. They include ex-offenders, drug and alcohol misusers, people with ill health, people with learning and physical disabilities, school pupils struggling with their behaviour at school and people with dementia.

Every volunteer takes part in productive, practical activities with a purpose, and is economically active in the community as a result. They also make friends. They use the therapeutic organic horticulture model for developing skills, confidence and employability, and for improving health and well-being.

Delighted to receive The National Lottery’s Local Legend Award, Jennie said, “I’m gobsmacked – it’s wonderful.

“As a community worker you work in the background, you’re not a frontperson and you don’t put yourself forward. But it’s [the award] great, it’s lovely. The Rhubarb Farm team is also really boosted by it, because it gives them a feeling of working in an organisation which is recognised for its positive contribution, and that they are part of that success.”

Jonathan Tuchner, from the National Lottery, added: “It’s thanks to National Lottery players, who raise more than £30 million each week for good causes, that Local Legends

like those awarded this year, are able to continue their work and inspire so many.

“Jennie Street has done an incredible job in her local community and the work she does is hugely impressive and vital for the people she’s helped. Jennie thoroughly deserve to be crowned a Local Legend in the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards.”

The National Lottery Legend Award recognises a person who has made an outstanding contribution to their area. She or he may have enhanced the local culture or quality of life by dedicating their skills, enthusiasm and energy to a diverse range of projects.

The winners were selected by a panel made up of representatives from the National Lottery family.

Each Local Legend has been able to continue their amazing work with the help of National Lottery funding. For Jennie Street, her organisation, Rhubarb Farm, has been awarded numerous grants, most recently £315,284 in 2018 to expand the farm.

The 25 th Birthday National Lottery Awards will air on Thursday, November 19, on BBC One- 25 years to the day since the first National Lottery draw took place.