Food forest and permaculture garden in Lemiers, Netherlands



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 Min stay requested: at least 2 weeks

  • Description


    My name is Astrid, 55 years, and I work for four days a week in Maastricht as a teacher and researcher in midwifery. I have a piece of land of 1.4 ha with sheep, permaculture garden, small foodforest, vegetable garden. We would like to have donkeys, pigs and chicken as well. I live in a large house, which is under construction for renovation. Currently I need people who can help me with renovating and with growing food; I can always use people who are handy and willing to do the work that need to be done. Tasks differ, but mostly I need help in construction and garden.
    The place to be is Vaals, at the south of the Netherlands, near to Aachen. Germany and Belgium are close. Maastricht is 25 km further, public transport to Maastricht, Aachen and Heerlen is good.

    Maybe you need to share the bedroom on the top floor or you camp in a tent. You can use the shower and a toilet on the first floor. We share the kitchen on the first floor. You will become part of the house, part of the family. You will meet my friends and my neighbours as well.
    I like hosting, I meet a lot of people and they always teach me new things. It has become a way of life. I like giving problems to volunteers that they can solve and by doing that, they learn that they can do more than they thought they could. And I also like it when people already know how to do things and when I can learn from them. So, if possible the tasks are matched to your competences and preferences.
    Working like this, it means that I need you to be involved in my project. In order to share my property with you, I need to feel connected with you. Communication is important in my opinion. It also means that I do not want to be seen as a boss or something related to that.

    I live with an old female cat, called Saartje. My boyfriend lives with me when he is not in Greece to sail the Ionic sea.

    You will work 5 days per week and 5 hours per day, (or in another schedule when we agree). You will work around the house and the garden and can learn a lot from the taks. We talk about the work (reflective and instructions) during the meals/evenings. During the weekends you are free to go wherever you want in the environment. A bit hilly here, three countries meet each other, beautiful place to walk, bike or visit towns. I join an orchestra on Tuesday evening, I visit my friends sometimes and I visit my old dad (96 years), my children and two grandsons once in a while.

    The food is healthy, mostly local, sometimes organic, with lots of vegetables. I do not provide sweet beverages or alcoholic drinks, I don't like drugs including smoking. Therefore I do not host volunteers who smoke. I got experience with vegan meals, we make as much as we can by our own (houmous for instance). Furthermore, I am open to sort out how we can meet your needs.
    Cooking, cleaning, doing the dishes, doing groceries, laundry work can be either part of volunteers' job, we do it together or on turn.

    Finally I want your awareness of the responsibility we both have. I will do the best I can to give you the necessities of living. On your side, I expect you to take responsiblity for your own safety, health, needs and well-being. In case of emergency I need to know with whom I can make contact. And you need to know that only you can take care of additional costs of medical care and the things you might break unintentionally. I do not have insurance for volunteers. If we make an agreement of your arrival, I need answers on: your full name, birth date, telephone number, email adress, medical/psychological issues, allergies, name and contact-details of back up person in case of emergency.
    I experienced that a lot of volunteers apply without reading the full details. So, when you apply, please let me know (on your own personal way) that you have read this profile.

  • Type of help

    Type of help

    General Maintenance
    Cooking / shopping
    Help with Eco project
    Help in the house
    Animal care
    Language practice
    Help with Computers / internet

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    You can improve your English, but you need to have basic skills in English. You will learn some knowledge about plants, permaculture basics, ecological renovating. I expect interest in these subjects. Guests normally feel very welcome and feel warm and on ease here. If you want, you also learn to play Elfenland, which is a board game about travelling.

  • Help


    Any help is welcome and much appreciated. There are different tasks that need to be done and we will look what fits best. Jobs that are done: making room for the sewage, building a chicken castle, building staircases from old woodpieces, weeding, making a toolboard, making roomseperators, isolating the roof, plastering the walls with loam, mosaic in the shower, painting walls, painting beams, sanding, make old furniture beatiful again, building a wooden wall, stabilise the floor, loaming and isolating walls, make a wooden wall, work on electricity.
    Tasks you can expect: planting and weeding in the garden, cleaning, finishing, all kinds of work, placing wallheating in loam walls, loaming, tiling, woodwork, painting, cleaning, laundry work.

  • Languages spoken

    Languages spoken

    English Dutch a bit German and French

  • Accommodation


    Top floor (winter) or tents for the volunteers. Beautiful shared shower, toilet on first floor, only a bit room in cupboard or tent, spare jellies/boots available. Summers camping possible. We share the kitchen.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    Aachen and Maastricht are nice cities 8-20 km away. Hiking, biking is very good here! Busses are here four times an hour going to Maastricht and Aachen. Two times an hour going to Heerlen.

  • 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

    5 hours a day, 5 days a week

We made juice and lemonade from the berries. Applejam and peachjam as well.
We harvested a lot of fruit in the summer.
Hot weather, nice to walk in the river! I am in the middle. two volunteers enjoying the "job".
Erik, who helps us with loaming the wall and with wood works. He likes to teach volunteers how to work with loam.
Team of three volunteers and myself.
Wall, made of old wood; you can see the floor woods that are fixed on the wall. Almost finished in this picture.
Shower, made with help of lot of volunteers is now ready and is used by the volunteers.
The right house is mine; nice neighbours in the other house. Sun panels on the roof to heat up water in a tank of 300 liter.
The river that is reachable on my land. We give the sheep water from this river. It is the border between Germany and the Netherlands. Clean water where the icebird lives.
Big table to eat together. Sometimes with friends from the village. The three persons on the right were volunteering in a part of 2017.

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Host ref number: 178468532451