Adstockistan was started in 2015 as both a community orchard for Adstock, Buckinghamshire, and a way of fundraising for communities in Afghanistan. To date over £10,000 has been raised from the planting of the trees, vines, various events and private parties that has been used by Afghanaid to plant fruit trees and support families in Afghanistan.
74 trees have been planted, each donated by individuals and families with connections to Adstock. For each tree purchased a donation was added which went directly to Afghanaid, an international charity that operates only in Afghanistan helping the poorest families in the remotest districts with their development and survival needs.
Inspired by the orchard, some of the money donated has been used to support orchard intervention in Badakhshan province. There is very little arable land in Badakhshan and the majority of the population are forced to exist on subsistence farming. Planting orchards of fruit trees not only provides vulnerable farmers with valuable income, it also helps to prevent soil erosion in this province’s fragile ecosystem. The money raised so far has provided six farmers, mainly from women headed households, with 37 persimmon trees each in the districts of Jurm, Baharak, and Shuhada.
Persimmon trees – relatively rare in the districts Afghanaid focuses on – are in demand and command a high price at market. In addition, farmers in neighbouring districts – who have the Tajik variety of the persimmon fruit – have seen huge yields from their trees. This gives us great hope that the planting of these orchards will significantly enhance the earning potential of these vulnerable families.
In addition, the orchard has raised money for various other more local charities, for instance the Scannappeal, the Teenage Cancer Trust, the Addinton Fund, NHS Together and the Brain Tumour Trust.