Sheep Sponsoring/Adoption

Sheep Sponsoring or Adoption

I didn't know of any schemes in UK that enabled people to sponsor or adopt a sheep or a share of a flock and receive fleece, fibre or spun yarn from the sheep/flock in return.  I've now found a couple of existing schemes and there are some new ones just starting - see below.

There are some schemes in USA that work around their Community Supported Agriculture system.  One is described here from Juniper Moon Farms and here is an article about another one.

It seems that some also offer opportunities to visit the farm to see the sheep/flock, watch shearing and learn how to skirt and prepare fleece.  Where the product is a spun yarn there may be information about the spinning of the yarn and/or visits to the spinning mill.

I don't know what the interest for this sort of scheme would be in the UK, although my initial request for information on twitter came through a spinner in Scotland expressing interest in such a scheme.

I'll post any information here I can find about farmers and organisations who are running schemes alone these lines.

Any farmers thinking of getting involved who aren't familiar with the requirements for hand-spinning fleeces might find some of the information linked from this page helpful

List of Adoption/Sponsor Schemes

This list should be regarded as a source of information only and not recommendations by anyone involved with Woolsack.

IMPORTANT - PLEASE READ THE INFORMATION HERE BEFORE USING ANY LISTINGS ON WOOLSACK
 

Caroline (@woolbothy) who crofts in Caithness, Scotland, is going to run a trial scheme.  You can contact her through her etsy shop or through twitter.

Farm Animal Sanctuary in Evesham, Worcestershire has adoption schemes for their rescued sheep and you can purchase fleece from them.  I've been advised you could contact them to ask about linking an adoption to getting the fleece from your adopted sheep.

Shankend Sheep in Scottish Borders is ready to start an adoption/sponsoring scheme.
I have a flock of sheep, (mixed breeds), in the Scottish Borders and like the idea of people being interested in the sheep the fleece they have came from. This year is the first year I have started selling fleeces to spinners and I post pictures online, (either through email or Ravelry), so people can see the sheep the fleece came from...I also tell them about the sheep, if she is named, how old she is and if she lambed what she had and when, and everyone seems very excited to know all the details.

Contact:- e-mail phar_lap@tiscali.co.uk mobile:- 07791117425

The Natural Yarn Company - not adoption as such, but you can buy knitting yarn and other wool products from named flocks

Info from 2 posts in the Woolsack fb group
"I sponsor sheep at The Seven Sisters Sheep Centre (E.Sussex) and get their wool when they are sheared. It's a 1 to 1 sponsorship - I name my lambs when they are born and my girls all know me as I visit them often. I didn't sponsor initially for the wool and often have other fleeces as the farmer has 57 of the 63 native breeds! Well worth a visit."
 
"sheepcentre.co.uk will take you there -although there isn't any mention of the sponsorship scheme. It's been a a family run venture for 26 years and I am sure Terry Wigmore (owner) will give you details. At present it's £30 for the first year, £25 each year after + you get the fleece if wanted + 2 free entries and a photo."