Our small organic farm, in the beautiful Intag Valley in the Andes Mountains (5,200-6,200 feet elevation), is a wonderful place to learn, experience, and enjoy—with excellent accommodations. We live in nature and are creating a self-sustaining life, mostly off the grid.
We seek a Mature, strong and healthy couple who speak English and have some degree of proficiency in Spanish. We expect Self-starters who keep their commitments. We’d like references. Please write to us in English. We cannot host children or pets.
Couples with organic gardening Experience and other skills that will help our project and who like dogs are preferred. More information below.
David and Lauren are retired. Our interests are varied, we are well travelled, and our life experience is full. We originate in Chicago and Wisconsin in the United States and have lived in Ecuador since 2011.
We love hosting Workaways from all over the world and enjoy getting to know them. We are enthusiastic about creating a self-sustaining, tranquil, beautiful Piece of land surrounded by nature. We are not a commercial enterprise. Our organic gardens are a continuing experiment in growing year round nutritious food using best practices.
David spent his career in the water systems industry in various management positions and has created an amazing water system on our land.
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help around the house
Help with Computers/ Internet
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
There is much to learn. Ecuadorian culture is quite different than western culture. Off the farm you will be immersed in Spanish. For non-native English speakers, you will have ample opportunity to practice English with us.
You have the opportunity to learn about all aspects of a self sustaining homestead (both what works and what doesn't). It's an ongoing discovery process :) Food production, environmental water and waste systems, land use, etc.
We work hard and save time for fun. One of the most enjoyable parts is meeting people from all over the world, sharing interesting conversations and points, of view, and having fun together. 😁
Our land fronts a rushing river and has 2 creeks (one with a covered bridge) ,and natural springs. Our volunteers stay in a river side cabaña with full amenities. It's beautiful, tranquil, and a nature lover's paradise.
We are creating a sustainable, organic lifestyle in nature. We hope you can bring knowledge, experience, and good ideas. WE ARE OPEN TO NEW PROJECTS. We have a large and a smaller garden. We would like to do continual planting (in our year round growing season) of small amounts for a continuous food supply that re-seeds itself. We need help with the usual maintenance--fences, trails, water system, tree pruning, planting, weeding, and harvesting. We favor natural methods and would like to start a few bee hives, do a bit of terracing on the side of our mountain, prefer no-till and keeping the soil covered. Compost, Micro hydro (also solar and wind energy), local medicinal herbs, and organic pest control are other interests. RIGHT NOW WE ARE STARTING A TROUT POND AND A SEPARATE DUCK POND.If you have a landscaping background, we can use your skills. We already have both a grey water system and black water bio digester. We want to have chickens soon. Any knowledge about chicken care and Carpentry skills to build coop/nesting boxes would be wonderful. Construction skills and experience are a plus. If you have any certified skills or special work experience please tell us. We give preference to skilled volunteers, but all are welcome. You are provided with kitchen facilities to do your own cooking. We offer produce in the garden and a small stipend to help with your food. We seek a better future in harmony with nature.
We are looking for a strong/fit couple of 25 plus years— Mature, good natured, cheerful, responsible, reliable, self -starters are appreciated. Interest and experience in organic gardening are very helpful. NO SMOKING of any substance or drugs anywhere on the land....No exceptions. As we are not responsible for any medical costs, We need copies of your health and work accident insurance valid in Ecuador. This is available through WORKAWAY or online. We do have a limited free clinic in Apuela. We speak English and some Spanish. WE REQUIRE A ONE MONTH MINIMUM COMMITMENT.
If you have specialized skills with experience we can adjust the time to the specific project. Additional to organic farming, we seek mural painters, certified massage therapist, house cleaning, landscaping, carpentry and construction. Please send references and details of your experience.
You have the opportunity to learn all about a self-sustaining homestead with amazing water system. Come and help us with your skills!
Before you arrive we will need emailed to us, a copy of your passport
And of the aforementioned insurance policy.
Our very charming cabaña is on the river. It has a compost toilet, hot gas powered shower, sink, a gas 4 burner cook top, electricity, and small refrigerator.There are also benches, a little table on the porch, and a hammock on the deck— good places to relax. Also available are a covered fire pit and a cement laundry tub with lines to dry your clothes.
The climate is mild--Fahrenheit it's in the 70s during the day and averages in the 55-62 Fahrenheit at night (Celsius up to 26-27 days and 13-15 nights). We are comfortable in long sleeve shirts and jeans. A sweater/jumper or a fleece for cooler times is all we need. Long sleeves protect from sun and insects, tank tops and short sleeves do not. Keep in mind that we are on the equator. Farmers rubber boots are helpful and can be purchased here for $9-$16, depending on your preference. We also have a few pairs to loan out.
BRING EARPLUGS as the sounds of nature can be loud.
We provide a vegetarian starter kit of staples and have found that volunteers prefer to cook for themselves and an occasional meal for all of us. There's a typical market in Apuela Sunday mornings. APUELA is a small town, yet has several stores to supply your wants and needs including a few Internet locations. The restaurants charge $2.50 for almuerzo--a full, fixed price lunch, including A hearty soup, juice, chicken, cutlet, or fish, rice, small salad and either potatoes or yucca and possibly beans. In the evening a few outdoor grills open where you can get a nice supper for $1.50. People are friendly.…
Apuela is about a 30-40 minute walk and you can hitch a ride anywhere (even in trucks) for a usual contribution of 25 cents. The bus to Otavalo, the site of the famous Indigenous market takes about 2 hours and costs $2.50. From there you can hop a bus to Cotacachi --35 cents and a half hour, Ibarra (a city of 100,000)--40 minutes and 55 cents, or Quito (Ecuador's capital--2 hours from Otavalo and an additional $2.50).
Nearby there's a wonderful hot springs. Nangulvi, also the site for booking many outdoor activities. Bird watching is excellent here. A cloud forest is a short bus ride. Warriman is a pre-Incan sun pyramid and artifacts museum, a place to receive a meteor massage, have a meal, and attend overnight ceremonies for every solstice and equinox. It also has the longest and highest zip line in the hemisphere.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
5 hours a day, 5 days a week