Update: Hello future friends! We are looking for help in April and May to do one or more of the following things... Depending on when you come and where we've got with the work.
1. Continue renovating the barn (details below).
2. Help to re-tile one of the old slate roofs of the farm house.
3. Help with gardening in the vegetable garden and field.
4. Getting the house ready for the summer and guests.
Look forward to meeting you! Xxx
Hi my name is Chloe, I am 38 years old and have started a project at my dad's farm in France, renovating an old grain loft into a little house.
I am doing the building myself and perhaps like you, have started with no building skills, but I am learning as I go! You don't need to be skilled in building (although if you are then that's great and you will be super welcome!) but be happy and able to do heavy lifting, climbing ladders and 5 hours a day of hard physical work. At the end of January I gave birth to my son, Lior, and the reason I need help is because I am not able to do much of the heavy work any more, but I would love to have the house finished for me and the baby to move into as soon as we can! Me and my dad will be on hand to give lots of advice though and there may be 2 or more of you working on the project together.
The farmhouse where we all live is a beautiful old bastide, which surrounds an inner courtyard. During the summer months we host courses and retreats here. There are typical villages to explore nearby, weekly markets and if the sun is shining lots of rivers perfect for cooling off and swimming.
Sometimes there are other volunteers at the farm when you come... perhaps working on another building project or in the gardens. At other times it might just be me and my dad. We often have friends passing through as well. This changing rhythm is something I love... The quiet times are as special as the busy, social times. In the evenings and during free time we will all have space to relax, share, and enjoy the peace of the surrounding countryside. Every night we share a meal together.
We speak English and French fluently (although it often turns out English is the main language we use) but when there are other volunteers here we can have a whole mix of languages going on!
We do not see the experience as only a swap of work for food and accommodation (although, of course that is what it is) But more of us all creating a (small or large) community together for our time together, where we all look after ourselves and each other. And are all always learning from each other too.
If you are interested in joining us please do get in touch.
Cooking / shopping
Hopefully, you will learn lots of building skills, and be surprised what can be achieved during your time here.
The house is in a rural setting, we will use produce from the garden to cook and you will experience a slower pace of living while you are here.
I am looking for help with renovating a barn into a house.
Depending on when you come the work might involve... plastering, sawing, building walls and furniture, insulating the roof and floor, sanding, plumbing, electricity, tiling etc etc. It is an adventure, and should be lots of fun, as well as hard, physical work.
English, French, Spanish
You will have a bedroom in the farmhouse. And all bedding and towels will be provided. Depending on how many people are here, you may have a room to yourself, or you may be asked to share with someone else.
We have a big garden, a vegetable garden and a field as well as other outbuildings that you are welcome to explore.
All food will be provided. We will probably help ourselves to breakfast and lunch so people can eat when it makes sense for the project they are working on. But every evening we will all come together to share a big meal. We usually take it in turns to cook for each other, so you might be asked to join a cooking team once or twice a week.
We are in a tiny hamlet in the Tarn. The nearest big city with flight and train links is Toulouse. If coming by public transport the easiest way to arrive is by train to Carmaux where we can come and pick you up. Also Blablacar (a car sharing website) works very well in France and is often a cheaper and more convenient way to travel.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
5 hours a day, 5 days a week