Help with DIY, language practice and become part of the family in Chancenay, France



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 Min stay requested: at least 2 weeks

  • Description


    We are Guy (56 years old) and Cécile (54 years old), a Belgian couple with 3 children (adults) who stayed in Belgium.
    One year ago, we decided to change our way of life and bought a great house (part for our home and a part for a future gite) in a great property of 5,5 ha.

    we are putting everything in place so that our house as well as the future cottage (that will be open begin 2022) operate only with natural resources (wood for heating, solar panels, hydraulic and wind turbines for electricity, animals and vegetable garden for food). The site has been uninhabited for several years and there are a lot of things to do : chop wood, vegetable garden, DIY, participating in house’s life (cooking, cleaning, painting, ..) + new environmentally friendly projects.

    We are about 10 minutes walk from the Chancenay’s village, 5 km far from St Dizier’s town, medium size-city with a lot of shops, restaurants and bars, 25 km from the lake of the Der (nautical sports, walks, bike rides...) and our own bikes are available.

    We are also 75 km far away from Verdun (war 1914-18), about 100 km from Reims and Epernay (Champagne), 250 km far from Paris (accessible by train), …

    We have 2 nice dogs : Shi-tzu and Beagle (young and fiery).

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Language practice
    Help with Eco Projects
    DIY and building projects
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Help around the house
    General Maintenance

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    The workawayer will be accompanied in his work, will share our daily life and participate in our activities on the site and outside.
    We would like to host a helper from an English speaking country so that we can practice the language.

  • Help


    We have some professionnals working on the main renovations but we try to do as much as we can ourselves and we would like to have one or two volunteers to help with the daily running.

    We are looking for volunteer(s) willing to help out with a wide variety of tasks as :
    - moving the surroundings,
    - maintaining the pool,
    - choping wood,
    - working around the Ornel's stream (digging, clearing, ...),
    - DIY
    - painting bedrooms,
    - cleaning and repairing old French stone walls,
    - etc.
    We have the right equipment : tractor (with wood splitter and mover), excavator, scaffolding, ...

    We would particulary like volunteers who are able yo handle medium-heavy physical work.
    You will not be asked to use any dangerous machinery or do anything skilled that you 're not trained to do.

    Workawayers will be expected to help out with cooking and clearing up after meals as part of living in a family.

    We are Belgian speaking French.
    We want to welcome volunteers whose are fluent in English so we can improve our own English.

    The place where we live is very quite.
    If you're looking for somewhere to be peaceful in your time off - maybe do some painting or reading or just watching the birds and listening the water - then you will be in paradise.

    We would like you to feel part of the family, eat together and enyoy sitting and talking (wish but no obligation).

  • Languages

    Languages spoken
    French: Fluent
    English: Intermediate
    Dutch: Intermediate

    This host offers a language exchange
    We would like to improve our English speaking.

  • Accommodation


    Bedroom with 2 single beds for 2 boys or a couple, private bathroom.
    Common meal with us.
    Breakfast around 8 a.m.
    Start of the working day around 9 a.m.
    Midday meal around 12:30 p.m.
    Evening meal around 7 p.m.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    During their time off, helpers can take advantage of the beautiful surrounding nature in the property, they can walk, swim or rest.
    They can also easily go to the nearest town for shopping or to go to the museum (foundry, ornithology).
    They can, by bike, go to the Lac du Der where possiblites of water sports, walking or nature.

    Internet access (wifi) is illimitated and of good quality.

  • 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?


  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week

Host ref number: 286757923865