Volunteer help building a new cabin on our beautiful off-grid/private boat access only island in British Columbia, Canada

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Canada

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  2019 

 Min stay requested: at least a week

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  • Description

    Description

    Hello! My name is Sharon - I am am self-employed and travel across Canada to teach Thai Massage courses.

    My husband Craig and I live on an off-grid, island property, at Brigade Bay, Gambier Island in Howe Sound, British Columbia, Canada on just over 6 acres of pristine wilderness.

    One of my passions is gardening and Herbal Medicine and since the purchase of our property 14 years ago, I began creating some medicinal herb gardens here on the island, in addition to an organic vegetable garden.

    WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT FROM YOUR WORKAWAY EXPERIENCE ON THE ISLAND WITH US:
    You will love the simplicity of our lives here. There are no distractions, except for when the deer show up to graze on our grass, or when we have 20+ hummingbirds buzzing around a feeder.

    You will be staying in a large tent on a generously sized tent platform that is close to a pit toilet and a covered/enclosed outdoor camp kitchen, where you will have your breakfast and lunches. There is also a hot water on demand enclosed outdoor shower. You will be provided with all of the food for your meals and will be responsible for making your breakfast, lunch and dinner. Because we have no stores on the island, we like to have our Workaways provide us with a detailed grocery list well in advance, so that we can shop for everything they wish to have on hand.

    We tend not to start our work projects super early in the mornings - we like to enjoy our coffee and spend time with the deer, chickens and cats and then get to work at around 9:30 or 10AM. We don't tend to work too late either - quitting time from a project tends to be at around 4:30PM, so that we can enjoy the afternoon and maybe head down to the beach or the dock for a cool off swim. We encourage you to do the same too.

    There are many bird species here and some that briefly migrate through the area. We have bald eagles year round. We have water access property, but are high enough up on a bit of a hill, with wide open views. If you are working close to where our house is, you will enjoy the spectacular views of the ocean and mountains just about everywhere you look. When it comes to having some 'down' time, we have a nice pergola style shelter that is furnished with hammocks and benches and a gas fire pit. A great place for a nap or to catch up on some reading after your work day has ended.

    SOME THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND:

    - We have two cats, so if you have allergies or dislike cats, this won't be a good match for you. We also have free ranging chickens up by our house.

    -When we host our Workaways, it is the hottest time of year here and often, the work is in the full sun. Please be prepared with hat and clothing protection and lots of sunblock. The work is both very hard and sweaty, as well as rewarding. Workaways should be in good, strong physical condition and used to working outdoors in all weather.

    - We are non-smokers and request non-smokers only. We are sociable, yet private individuals. We can appreciate people wanting to have fun, but do not want individuals making loud noise past 10PM. We do not tolerate inebriation or any kind of drugs. We DO like to have fun and a good time and like to enjoy a cold beer on a hot day and a good glass of wine at dinner and are happy to share that with you.

    SIGHTSEEING OPPORTUNITIES FOR YOU OFF-ISLAND: We tend to go into the village of Squamish one time per week, depending on weather, to go grocery shopping. You are welcome to join us for the trip in to the city to do some sightseeing. There is a nice hike area on the way to Squamish - called the Chief - where we could drop you off and then pick you up once we are finished our shopping for the day.

    We are also happy to drive you to Horseshoe Bay, which is only 15 min. from the Lions Bay Marina, where we boat to. From Horseshoe Bay, you can catch a Ferry that is going to Bowen Island (only 30 min. by Ferry) - a great place to hang out for the day! You can go on as a 'foot passenger'. It is a charming place, with some interesting shops and restaurants that you can walk to.

    Horseshoe Bay Ferries can also take you to the 'Sunshine Coast' (60 min. on the ferry) if that is one of your destinations. There are lots of camping and hiking opportunities there. You might be able to hook up with a tour bus, or rent a car to tour around. Horseshoe Bay also has many regular buses that can take you to many other parts of Vancouver.

  • Type of help

    Type of help

    Building
    General Maintenance

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    The Workaway Volunteer who comes to stay with us will get to enjoy being immersed in pure nature. It is not too often that a property can seem so remote and untouched, yet is so close to the city and other must-see places in the surrounding areas. That said, please come prepared for all kinds of weather conditions - we live in a rain forest, so you can probably expect to have to work in some rain from time to time.

    It really is a very special place on the island here - a place to enjoy nature and to remove oneself from the bustle of busy city life. This is a great place for star gazing, hiking, beach combing and swimming in the ocean. I would describe our setting as peaceful and 'chill'. Our beach and ocean has small rocks and no sand, so some sturdy water shoes are recommended.

    It is wonderful to see how all of our animals can co-exist with each other - cats getting along with baby chicks and deer feeding out of our hands, while chickens gather to see if they can get a treat as well. It's a lot of fun here!

    What we do NOT have here on the island:
    -No banks or ATM's
    -No stores
    -No restaurant
    -No hospital or medical clinic
    -No postal service

    We we DO have on the island:
    -Limited Internet and cell phone services
    -Dirt roads with no stop signs
    -Hiking trails
    -Beach

  • Help

    Help

    WE WILL NEED OUR WORKAWAYS TO HELP WITH THE FOLLOWING -

    Construction:
    - We are looking for individuals who are 24+ years of age minimum, who have had solid experience with building or home renovations. You need to be able to work with power tools such as a chop saw, nail gun, skill saw, palm nailer and know how to use a level and speed square. A strong comprehension of English is also required, as we have found that construction work takes a lot of specific communication and it works best, if there are no language barriers. For this reason, we like to be able to conduct a candidate interview by either Skype or Facetime, to determine suitability.

    -If you are traveling with a partner who does not have construction experience, then that person can help with General Maintenance around the cabin and main house doing jobs such as sanding, painting, chopping and stacking wood.

    -Our Workaways should have lots of real wilderness camping experience and be prepared to travel with suitable outdoor wear, for when our weather gets wet or cold.

    -Regarding Cooking: We will need our Workaway Volunteers to be responsible for making their own meals, but we will be providing you with all of the food that you like for this.

  • Languages spoken

    Languages spoken

    English and a little bit of French

  • Accommodation

    Accommodation

    You will be staying in a large tent (approx. 12 foot x 12 foot) on a generously sized tent platform that is close to a pit toilet and a covered/enclosed outdoor camp kitchen, where you will have your meals. We have a total of 2 large tents on platforms and some smaller ones that can be placed in other areas. This space is close to a large organic vegetable garden in a quiet, forested area and is about a 7 minute walk up a hill to our house and cabin.

    For meals, you may prepare your meal with our barbeque and eat outdoors or in the covered kitchen area.

    You will be using an outdoor shower, located by the sleeping tents. The shower has a hot water on demand system and uses rain water, collected in a big holding tank.

    We have blow up mattresses and/or camp foam mattresses for you, plus bedding, pillows, flashlights and towels.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    If you want to do some sightseeing before or after your Workaway with us, there are plenty of world famous places to go that are close by. From the Lions Bay Marina, where we pick you up, we are a mere 30 min. to Squamish - a rock climbing paradise, with some wonderful hiking trails. It is 60 min. to the famous Whistler mountain range with lots of hiking, heli skiing, windsurfing, golfing and mountain biking trails. It is 15 min. to Horseshoe Bay to catch Ferries to the Sunshine Coast, Bowen Island and Nanaimo on Vancouver Island. It is 40 min. to downtown Vancouver.

    We are happy to drive you to the Horseshoe Bay Ferry Terminal area, where there are numerous buses departing for areas all around the Vancouver area as well.

    Because there are no stores on the island here, we do all of our provisioning in Squamish - we will work on ensuring we can supply our Workaways with all of their favourite foods for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 5 hours a day, 5 days a week

Our off-grid 'Brigade Bay' community gravel road connects 65 lots over 10 km. No other roads connect our community with others on Gambier Island.
Our cat 'Mooka' likes to be part of all activities going on in the cabin!
Our pergola we like to call 'The Prow' is a great place to relax - the deer think so too!
Migrating Orca whales migrate through our waters, close to the shoreline in the summer months.
Our trusty boat 'Stevie Ray' is our commuting vessel, taking us from the Lions Bay Marina on a 20 min. crossing to our community dock at Brigade Bay, Gambier Island, BC
Our free ranging chickens are very social birds and like to hang out together around the cabin.
The hiking trail through pristine rain forest connects our community at Brigade Bay to that of Long Bay. No roads connect our communities - just foot paths.
Enjoy the view from one of our many vantage points on Gambier island, BC, Canada
Resident seals at Pam Rocks - just 10 min. away by boat from the island to go and visit them! Sea Lions migrate through here as well, as well as Orca Wales and White Sided Dolphins





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