This is a permacultural and holistic project located in the Italian Alps (Piedmont, Biella Province) with the aim to become an educational and retreat center in order to help people to connect in a deep way with nature and each other.
I (Ellen) have been engaged for many years in working for a sustainable planet, particularly through being active in the Transition Towns Network and at a certain point felt the need to get my hands dirty and walk the path I was preaching. :-)
It is an amazing location, at 1000 m altitude, with forests, creeks and spectacular views. A place with a vibrant energy and very close to wilderness. For us it was love at the first sight! We feel to be the guardians of this place and would like to enhance its beauty even more and create abundance and nourishment (in many senses).
At the moment this dream is nurtured mainly by our family - me, Ellen (52), Lorenzo (53) and our son Jan Daniel (14).
After having renovated the old stone farmhouse in accordance to ecodesign principles in 2013 we moved in 2014. We started to work on soil fertility and planted so far approximately 400 fruit trees and shrubs, herbs, flowers, etc. in order to favor biodiversity end an edible perennial forest. We share our life with our animal friends: 2 horses, 2 dogs, 1 cat, chickens, geese, etc. - who roam freely on the nearly 6 ha property. Quite recently we started to work with water and built several little ponds.
We organize workshops and events and receive guests on a regular basis.
DIY and building projects
Help with Eco Projects
Help around the house
Help with Computers/ Internet
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
We love to experiment and look for new challenges, so both for us and visitors there would always be great learning opportunities. We host courses and workshops and this could enhance learning even more. Our library is full of books on permaculture, homesteading, holistic lifestyles, etc. And we have a well established network of friends who passionately are engaged in bringing on positive and sustainable change which is linked to our local Transition Initiative
As it is an ambitious project, we need help in many ways. The house is quite big and needs cleaning and maintenance. Our gardens always need some weeding and plant control. And in the appropriate season, we continue to plant trees for the food forest. We get our energy mainly from wood and this means that wood collecting and chopping is on our agenda. We started to renovate a second building on the property, so also some skilled help with masonry and wood working would be highly appreciated. Also looking after the animals is one of the tasks we would like to share with our visitors. Our horses have just been trained and we would love to receive help from experienced horse lovers and/or trainers to work with them further. Beauty is very important for us - and we would love if some artists and decorators could help us to create some artwork and magical places (for meditation, children, etc.). Depending on the season, we also collect plants, fruits, etc. for conserves and oils.
This host offers a language exchange
This host has indicated that they are interested in sharing their own language or learning a new language.
You can contact them directly for more information.
Workawayers can be hosted in a little cosy room (hand decorated) or in camping facilities (we can provide equipment if necessary) during the times we have some groups for workshops, and use all the common area facilities (kitchen, common room, bathroom, etc.). We normally have breakfast around 7, lunch around 1pm, dinner around 8pm. We eat mainly vegetarian meals.
We would love if workawayers would get passionate and engaged in this dream and make it theirs. So personal initiative is very appreciated. Of course, we need to get things done as well, but we prefer to build our relationship on mutual trust and commitment rather than working hours. For us it is important that this becomes a fullfilling experience for everybody. The location and surrounding area is simply beautiful, so we recommend to explore it hiking. Public transport gets you approximately 5 km from our place. We drive to the town of Biella several times a week and are happy to arrange for lifts.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
We have a good wifi connection but it's not in the main building but at a 5 min walk. The space is not always heated in winter.
This host can provide space for campervans.
More than two
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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