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An off-grid organic farm in the western hill ranges of south India near the town of Madikeri. It is located at the edge of a forest with natural springs and waterfalls and is very secluded. A large part of the property is a private wilderness project hosting seasonal wildlife from elephant, boar, small animals like civet cats, rabbits and numerous birds.
Coffee & pepper is the produce from the farm along with organic vegetables.
We are a Indo-Japenese couple seeking to be closer to nature & enjoy the benefits of living in a wilderness environment. Ours is a simple farmers life with enough time to appreciate what nature provides. To become self-sufficient with the food produced is the goal. We are comfortable with people of all ages & pets of any kind. Our family consists of two Indian Mudhol hounds -Sufi & Koi and our guardian black cats Kurosan and Kagemusha.
A bit more about ourselves:
Rajen has lived in India most of his life with a diverse career in corporate, social work and the UN, but always kept his connect with nature and farm. The current farm is due to a passion for wildlife so past 10 years has been spent converting it into a private wilderness sanctuary. Rajen switched off from working for humans a few years ago and divides most of the time to the forest and farm.
Currently based in Jakarta and hope to join Rajen permanently in a couple of years. I was born in France and lived in other countries including Japan. I have been in India for a decade or so before being moving to Indonesia in 2019 January. At the moment, shuttling between the current posting in Jakarta and the farm as often as possible is the juggling act.!!
Before you make a commitment do consider a few things below that would make the interaction mutually comfortable & rewarding.
Please do check for schedule of work listed in the profile, it may change depending on the work for the season. The farm work requires hard physical effort so please take this into consideration.
Farm animals: Goats, chickens & ducks.
Our food is locally grown or from other local farms. We refrain from industrialised food chain so variety is limited to seasonal available produce only.
We do not discriminate between vegan, vegetarian or meatarian volunteers and try our best to provide a balance. Volunteers are expected to respect the preferences of others and coexist harmony.
Food and accommodation is free: Breakfast, lunch & dinner are provided. Cuisine is mostly South Indian. Breakfast is millet porridge with available fruit. Black tea / black coffee is provided twice a day. Lunch and dinners are vegetables and lentils. Eggs/ Meat is usually once a week.
If you have dietary allergies, please discuss it in advance. Food is generic and common to all so special cooking for individual preferences is not possible. Volunteers are expected to help in the kitchen and share in all kitchen chores in addition to the farm work.
The farm is completely off grid and by intent completely isolated. Interaction with nearby farms and humans is kept to the bare minimum to keep human footprint as minimum as possible. The farm gets NO visitors. Access to the farm is only by pick up by 4x4 from Madikeri town.
The forest is an integral part of the property and volunteers are expected to respect the right to life of all living things that coexist here. Because of the focus on encouraging wildlife to live in harmony, there is no loud noise or loud music. Smoking of any kind is prohibited. If you are a smoker then this would be a good place to kick the habit!
Phone/Internet: International volunteers are advised to get a local mobile sim at the airport itself. Jio & airtel are two telecom operators that have good data access in all parts of the country. If required a hotspot can be provided each day for an hour.
Medicines: In case you are on any specific medications we suggest you stock up for them but do not bring generic medicines as they are all available here.
Vaccinations: Taking into account the Covid 19 pandemic please check with the government regulations on health requirements. we will keep you updated on any local regulations at time of travel.
Working clothes will be provided. House wear can also be provided if required. Do check for local weather conditions during the duration of stay.
Solo female traveller: Be assured that travelling in South India is quite safe even for solo female travellers, BUT common sense and awareness is a must for all travellers, solo or otherwise.
Language: English is widely understood in the south. Kannada is the local language.
What to bring:
A pair of house flip flops
A happy attitude
How to reach here:
Direct buses are available from the Bangalore international airport and from other bus terminus in Bangalore city & suburb. you can check schedule on . In case you have problems accessing the site let us know the arrival time and we will suggest the appropriate bus to board. Tickets can be bought on the bus itself, it takes about 6 hrs to reach Madikeri town from Bangalore international airport.
There are buses every hour from Mysore city or from Mangalore city; both take about 3 hrs to reach. There is also a direct daily bus from Goa to Madikeri.
Thank you for the patience in reading this far; hope it induces you to join us.
Moe & Rajen
Help with Eco Projects
DIY and building projects
Help around the house
-Volunteers can participate in a farmer's way of life, learn & experience natural farming methods.
-Get involved with the off-grid life and learn how we have managed for almost a decade being self reliant with power & water.
- get involved with the wilderness project and discover if there is a forester inside you.
- learn foraging and help in documenting the natural herbs project
- Our place is an escape from the crowded towns of India, it is perfect for those who seek solitude & peace and a connect with nature.
These are the things that we need help on.
1. Clearing the forest paths & clearing bush from the stream.
2. Fence repair .
3. Dog care & grooming.
4. Making Water channels.
5. House maintenance.
6. Landscaping & garden.
7. Weeding & pruning (requires using weed cutters and chain saw)
8. Coffee & pepper plantation maintenance
9. Goat, ducks and chicken care
Volunteers will share our home & be part of the family. Accommodation are two guest rooms which have basic comforts. If there are more than two volunteers then it will be a dorm accommodation.
Volunteers can go onward to learn yoga at Mysore town which is 2 1/2 hours away. The Buddhist monasteries and golden temple of Bylakuppe where his Holiness, the Dalai Lama comes to teach is about 30 km from town. There are buses every hour, a shared day trip could be arranged for volunteers staying beyond 2 weeks. There is a direct bus to Gokarna & Goa. Please note that due to the covid 19 pandemic many tourist sights may be shutdown or have restricted access.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Maximum 5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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