Help with reforestation and development of a multi-cultural permaculture outdoor mindfulness eco-space in Hope near Nelson New Zealand


New Zealand

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    within 5 days

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 Min stay requested: at least 1 month

  • Description


    Hi, we are an international family originally from Bermuda who moved to sunny Hope near Nelson about 3 years ago. Andrea is a breast cancer survivor and one of our motivations for moving to New Zealand was to live an outdoor life in a beautiful country with an abundance of healthy food, water and activities. How wonderful that we ended up living in Hope. We live on the Richmond Ranges near many vineyards with views of the Southern Alps, Kahurangi and Abel Tasman natural parks and Separation Point.

    We grow trees to help fight climate change (the trees are managed by professional forestry firms).

    The town of Richmond is in the middle between Nelson and Abel Tasman. Other areas within driving distance include Rainbow Ski Field, many mountain bike tracks including the Great Tasman Cycling trail, Marlborough wine country, Hanmer Springs, Nelson Lakes, and many awesome Great Walks including the Heaphy Track.

    GIVEN THE CURRENT STATE OF THE WORLD WITH THE PANDEMIC AND SOCIAL JUSTICE MOVEMENTS, OUR PLANS TO BUILD A RETREAT CENTRE ARE ON HOLD. Instead, we are focusing our efforts on reforestation of growing trees for our carbon forest and native plants. We will be relying on permaculture approaches for planting and maintaining orchards, propagating plants and trees.

    Simultaneously we are also considering the best use of this property in terms of providing outdoor meditation training, or spaces for artists and other creatives in the form of AIR (Artist in Residencies). There will be evolving projects and all creative ideas are welcome! We'd love it if you would help with something that truly interests you or showcases your skills. Staying with us will help refine our vision.

    We welcome people who have lived in startup, co-working, yoga, meditation, eco-retreat spaces or permaculture farms who would like to pass on their learnings and wisdom as we figure out how we will blossom.

    We are located on several hundred acres 10 minutes from the Richmond town centre. We have several hiking trails for you to wander on as well as beach access to the rivers surrounding our property. As you wander around, you may see wildlife such as ostriches, native birds, wild pigs, birds of prey, pheasants, quail, peacocks, wild horses as well as kune kune pigs, sheep and grazing cattle. You may be able to kayak and swim, as well as cycle along the 160km of biking trails in the Nelson area.

    There is a woolshed which Workaways may improve to create a social hang out space for impromptu gatherings.

    People with a driver's license and/or own transportation are preferred as there is no public transport to our place.

    Minimum stay is a month or more, as this is less disruptive to our toddler and other Workaways. Please DO NOT APPLY if you cannot stay long. We rarely take last-minute stays as we have huge demand and we do not take 1 week or 2 week stays as it is too disruptive to all of the workaways and our toddler.

    -Plant propagators, gardeners/landscapers to do planting, propagating, seed saving, watering & mowing
    -cooks who specialize in ethnic cuisines: Asian and North African, are able to use spices, and cooking meat and vegan options, and do food shopping
    -builders /carpenters / joiners / woodworkers / electricians /solar installers/ welders: people with carpentry and constructions skills to build decks, pavilions, platforms, decks, geodesic domes, treehouses, fencing, concrete etc
    -Spanish speakers who can assist with our 3 1/2 year old toddler, take him to and from daycare and babysit including evenings and to walk and look after our puppy
    -social media/web specialists to assist with blog building and other platforms
    -artists: painters, sculptors, weavers, textile artists who want to make the grounds beautiful by making stuff and painting

    With a toddler and a cancer survivor living here, we are immunosuppressed. As a result, we cannot afford to take people who are fighting infectious diseases, have health or behavioural challenges, or have been hospitalized overnight. All guests must show proof of immunization and possess travel health insurance or the equivalent.

    skilled trades
    German & carpenters
    Polish & carpenters
    Slovenian & carpenters

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Art Projects
    Language practice
    Help with Eco Projects
    DIY and building projects
    Animal Care
    Farmstay help
    Babysitting and creative play
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Help around the house
    General Maintenance
    Help with Computers/ Internet

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    For the longest time, we have been interested in growing our own food sustainably. You can learn about various growing techniques as we start to put some of that theoretical knowledge into practice. We will make mistakes and have fun learning from them!

    Andrea is also a soon to be graduate of a 2-year Mindfulness Meditation Teachers Training course under the direction of Tara Brach and Jack Kornfield. If you are interested you can learn about various meditation techniques including loving-kindness.

    We look forward to hearing about your travels and sharing stories. We love learning new recipes, trying new foods, learning a new language as well as brushing up on our French and Spanish. Of course, we look forward to helping you with learning English, if needed.

    Learn about carbon forestry and how our trees help fight greenhouse gases by storing carbon in their trunks. Help to grow more trees.

    There will be an opportunity to go to local festivals in the area. If you are interested, you can join in on drop-in classes that other Workaways have enjoyed in Nelson such as African drumming classes (djembe) and Zumba. (There is a cost to each class).

    We are interested in learning more about laughing yoga and other things that bring joy!

    Our cultural exchange motto is: Teach, Learn Joy!

  • Projects involving children

    Projects involving children

    This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.

  • Help


    We do not have a fixed schedule as we try to intentionally avoid a corporate structure. Instead, we work on projects in groups based on our skills, energy levels, urgency and weather. We believe that flexibility increases resiliency, skills required in the current global situation of constant and rapid change. We aim to do projects joyfully and willingly, asking for help and clarification when required and having the freedom to come up with better solutions or alternatives. We also believe in celebrating and relaxing by doing local activities such as festivals, going to the beach and parks, hiking on our property, participating African drumming. We also encourage teaching each other new recipes, skills, yoga or meditation.

    These are some of the tasks you may be asked to do while you are here:
    Making stuff (carpentry and handy skills are required!)
    Planting and learning about permaculture and exploring other sustainable farming practices
    Weed & pest control and spraying
    Preparing meals
    Help with securing animals
    Childcare, speaking in Spanish or French to 2 year old boy, babysitting, drop off and pick up from daycare
    Cleaning and housekeeping
    Arts and crafts: Beautifying the area through sculptures, artwork, creating labyrinths create signage

    Hopefully you will have an:
    Enthusiasm for the outdoors
    Tolerant of others
    Interested in mindfulness, loving-kindness or other meditations
    Social media skills, (I would love to learn how to effectively use instagram, social media, vlogging and blogging as I am hopeless)

    You may also be interested in the following topics:
    Global warming & transition
    7 Generations
    5 mindfulness principles (5 precepts)
    Meditation and forest bathing
    Non-violent communication
    Social Justice

  • Languages

    Languages spoken
    English: Fluent
    French: Intermediate
    Spanish: Beginner

    This host offers a language exchange
    This host has indicated that they are interested in sharing their own language or learning a new language.
    You can contact them directly for more information.

  • Accommodation


    There is a renovated barn with multiple bathrooms and sleeping areas. AS THIS IS A FORESTRY PROPERTY, NO SMOKING OR FIRES ARE ALLOWED.

    There is a Lagotto, Italia water dog, who loves attention and walking with you on the trails. Additional workaways can stay in a renovated building that has 2 full indoor bathrooms as well as an outdoor shower. Internet and Netflix smart TVs are available for your viewing pleasure. We also welcome campers and caravan campers too. We do have one extra-large multi-room air tent however, you would need to help build a platform for it.

    Workaways are responsible for cooking and preparing their own meals using an allowance they are given. There is a breakfast bar and cooking facilities. Workaways may also be required to cook for the family depending on their skills. We are omnivores and eat grass-fed meat from our farm. We are also growing our own veggies to round out our ability to eat fully from our property. We bake breads and like to make homemade pizzas, fermented foods such as purple sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha and yogurt etc.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    If you have an international driver's license, there is a car that you may be able to use on a shared basis. Please note that there is no public transportation to our property. The closest bus stop is in Richmond which is a 10-minute car ride away.
    The closest airport is Nelson. You can also take a ferry from the North Island, Wellington to Picton and take a bus from there to Richmond via Nelson.

    ITEMS NEED TO BRING: sun hat, sunscreen, bug spray, rain jacket, driver's license, immunization record, travel and/or health insurance. We have a limited supply of work boots and gloves.

    There are many areas you can explore within driving distance such as Kahurangi and Abel Tasman National Parks, Rainbow ski field, Marlborough Sounds. Located in one of NZ’s fruit growing and wine district we are in a neighbourhood of vineyards. Go wine tasting or ride one of the 160 km biking trails in the area which include the Great Taste Trail. Or go further afield to Westport on the West Coast, Kaikoura to whale watch on the East Coast, further down to Christchurch (about 4 hours away), pop over to Wellington—the country's capital, by a 30-minute plane ride or by ferry.

    We are on a peninsula surrounded by rivers which you can swim in and have local streams on the property. Our property is hilly with hiking tracks.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • Can host digital nomads

    Can host digital nomads

    This host has indicated that they love having digital nomads stay.

  • Space for parking camper vans

    Space for parking camper vans

    This host can provide space for campervans.

  • Can possibly accept pets

    Can possibly accept pets

    dogs are welcome to play with our dog. However are not allowed to stay inside residential spaces.

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week

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Accuracy of profile: (4.9)

Cultural exchange: (4.9)

Communication: (4.9)

Host ref number: 137849913339