Organic farm in the Appennin hills 1 hour from Parma. We raise cows, pigs, chicken, grow our own wheat, fruit and vegetables, saffron and herbs, collect wild berries, mushrooms and chestnuts. The old stone farmhouse is also an "agriturismo", where we welcome guests for holidays or dinners. In our "lab" kitchen, we make preserves, jams, fruit juices, dry herbs and prepare the dow for our bread. We, that is Gianluca and me, Iris, have run this organic farm since 1993, after many years of working for the International Red Cross in war driven countries. The work with the Red Cross has inspired us to try to create a peaceful, self-sufficient and quiet place where nature is dominating the daily life... (and dictating the daily work!) ...
DIY and building projects
Travellers can learn about small scale organic farming, growing vegetables, sustainable use of limited water ressources, extensive animal breeding in a mountain area, renewable energies (solar hot water, fotovoltaic pannels for electricity, wood for heating), about different construction and maintenance works, about guest accommodation, about cooking with what the farm offers .... The century old wooden kitchen table is a meeting and melting pot of languages, nations, stories, projects and ideas....
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
Travellers can help with all different jobs of the farm (planting vegetables, harvesting, weeding, collecting grass, making fences for animals, collecting and cutting firewood, help in the lab with the preserves, packaging, labelling, farmers market, help with the guest accomodation). They can also indicate their preferences and we will try to make the work match their skills... ! For the farm- and construction work, we ask travellers to help in the mornings from 8am till 1pm, five days a week. For those travellers who specifically want to help with cleaning and cooking, (jobs linked to the guest accomodation), schedules are arranged on the spot, depending on the needs.
Accommodation is in an open space wood house with bathroom, kitchen, dining area, sleeping area (2 beds), and/or in a shared room of the main house. We have our lunch meals all together, while breakfast and dinner are taken care of by the volunteers themselves in the wood house, with products provided by the farm.
The nearest railway station is Borgo Val di Taro, some 9km from the farm. Public transport like busses are there too, but not very frequent. The area is very nice for hiking and swimming in the river, and it is possible to make day trips to the seaside (Cinque Terre), Parma, Pontremoli, La Spezia, Genova, Pisa...
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
More than two
5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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