Volunteer at an off grid, self sufficient farm on different projects in the Yass Valley, NSW, Australia



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 Min stay requested: at least 2 weeks

  • Description


    This is a family owned and run stud grazing property where we enjoy a simple life based on a traditional mixed farming model.
    We have typical daily chores on a working farm checking on the cattle, sheep and fence lines, feeding out to heritage pigs and poultry and working in the gardens. Our animals are cared for by livestock guardian dogs- and interacting with the Maremma will be part of your experience.
    We process our own heritage black pigs several times a year and make charcuterie - salami, hams and bacon and other products that we sell locally. We do eat very well. Beef, lamb and poultry is also pasture raised on farm.
    Establishing gardens and landscaping around the house is the top priority for 2017, and any skills you might have to contribute in this and other building works such as painting would be most appreciated.
    We have 200 acres of forest old growth forest eucalypt forest and there is a lot of seasonal tasks in keeping fire trails open and learning to use equipment in collecting and processing timber.
    I work offfarm several days a week, in Canberra city where you will have an opportunity to spend your weekends in a lovely apartment in town and enjoy all that our nations capital has to offer.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    DIY and building projects
    General Maintenance
    Farmstay help
    Help around the house
    Animal Care

  • Projects involving children

    Projects involving children

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

  • UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN goals
    No poverty
    Zero hunger
    Good health and well-being
    Quality education
    Gender equality
    Clean water and sanitation
    Affordable and clean energy
    Decent work and economic growth
    Industries, innovation and infrastructure
    Reduce inequality
    Sustainable cities and communities
    Responsible consumption and production
    Climate action
    Life below water
    Life on land
    Peace, justice and strong institutions
    Partnerships for the goals
  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    If you can DISCONNECT FROM TECHNOLOGY, like being in the country, respect and enjoy working with animals then you will enjoy sharing our lifestyle. Skills in forestry, gardening, bees, cattle work, carpentry, mechanical, fencing, paving, concreting, plumbing, painting or just an interest to learn about Australian fauna and flora while lending a hand will be very welcome. Help is flexible with mid week weekends and transport into Canberra for the many national, political and cultural interests our nations capital can offer. most are free! Stay at least a fortnight- stay a few months-we have regular daily chores feeding out livestock and have a few projects you can get involved in for a longer term stay if you find the rhythm of the seasons, beauty and tranquillity of our property draws you in. We are somewhat higher than Canberra so there really are 'four seasons' (sometimes in one day) and you will appreciate the cosy open fires and great food on offer in exchange for your physical skills and enthusiasm.

    Independent travellers, couples and families all welcome. We offer farm raised eggs, meat and milk as part of your daily meals, and welcome those who have a passion to pursue their own interests while staying with us. Maybe you want to build your own bush hut and stay a little longer, or pursue your interest in permaculture principles or cool climate wine production? All things are possible with links to local producers and other like minded growers of quality produce in our region.
    Closest train/bus station is Yass Junction, happy to pick up. Yass is about 3 hours from Sydney or 8 hours Melbourne by XPT train on the southern line and about the same by regional bus. Major buslines run multiple trips daily to and from Canberra city bus terminal- pick up there is EASY too. Plan ahead and fares are only $15 from Sydney.

  • Help


    We live in a rare pocket of biodiversity in the Yass Valley where we operate as a small holding with a light footprint and little technology. We are in the process of redesigning the house orchard and vegetable garden. Help on the farm is varied with lots of animals birthing as the season progresses.

    There are construction projects including some new accomodation for people and animals using traditional building techniques working alongside a skilled person.
    We have been approved for a conservation grant to develop an alternate 'drought lot' model of pasture management-will involve cattle yards, water reticulation, massive tree planting and fencing.

    We are about an hour out of Canberra, and 20 minutes from Yass town, or Gundaroo village. We are planning additional accomodation for helpers, but until then, you will sometimes have to share space with other helpers when we are busy through winter, or may have your own room and bathroom in comfortable warm, well furnished family home. Camping or your own caravan etc always welcome. The house is on stand alone solar power (not on grid) has LIMITED satellite wifi internet and we harvest all our own water. There is lots of native wildlife to see- eagles, goanna, kangaroo, rare wallabies, lizards, Water dragons, sugar gliders, platypus if you are really observant and quiet, and bountiful birdlife. Our philosophy is to work with nature, and having got through a few natural climatic hardships we are moving towards establishing a self sufficient productive food garden.

    This is a working farm-we run dexter cattle, dorper sheep, heritage pigs, alpaca and rare breed chickens. We have a growing organic meat business and have a forest enterprise as well. Our animals are protected by Maremma livestock guardian dogs and Alpaca. There are a lot of daily routine tasks in caring for the livestock.
    We have a tract of land ready to establish a big food forest based on fruit, nuts, traditional medicinal herbs and foraging plants.
    In the late spring, Alpaca will need shearing and that is something to see! I am seeking self motivated, reliable helpers, who value conservation and a simple life.
    Our country has plenty of wild spaces, access to much of the property is via four wheel drive vehicle. You will need to be fit to walk or trek our forest.

  • Languages spoken

    English: Fluent

  • Accommodation


    You will have your Own room and adjoining bathroom

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    Please note:

    This is an off grid, self sufficient farm. We are on stand alone solar- not connected to the power grid; this means we harvest our own water and process our waste on site.
    This is a working farm. The welfare and care of all our livestock is the number one priority and a daily part of every helpers work.
    We simply don't have unlimited access to broadband connection. You use unlimited wifi on your weekend visits to town , or have a 3G service on your own mobile.
    At the farm, we are on satellite and we have very limited service. That's just the way it is in rural Australia. The provision of Internet and telephone services is very expensive in country areas- access to lines is not guaranteed.
    Water is precious and the supply finite.
    We have an expectation that you will respect our home, and keep your living space clean- sharing the household tasks is something everyone should expect, and if youd like to prepare a meal thats awesome too!

    You are responsible for your own safety and wellbeing. While we are happy to teach basic skills, the nature of farm work throws up serious safety issues so you must be willing and able to take direction. Unless you can demonstrate proficiency, driving four wheel drive vehicles, using chain saws or tractors will not be possible!
    - we provide basic saftey gear and instruction but please expect to provide your own toiletries, and any extras you particularly enjoy- sweets, snacks or alcohol are not part of our normal household budget. We shop for supplies every fortnight and you can come to town to access shopping for personal things you would like.

  • 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

  • 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

Host ref number: 257498692871