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Co-create through natural farming and spiritual regeneration in Sicily, Italy

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  • Last activity: 18 Jul 2024



 Min stay requested: at least 1 month



  • Description


    We're full until the 17 th of August! please apply for that period and on!

    Are you a Plant person or someone that deeply desires to connect back to Mother Nature?
    Do you love spending time in a natural environment full of beings more than in cities stuffed with loads of people and pollution?
    Are you able to see the Divine surrounding the universe and living in every creature?

    Do you have it clear that Social justice, environmental justice and ecological collapse are all interconnected and that supremacist colonialism, capitalism and wars are major contributors to the problems above?

    Please apply if you are able to stay from a minimum of 3weeks to up to 3 months. (summer time minimum one month)

    Main practical activities of the season:
    general maintenance of the common spaces and of our veg gardens and orchard, seasonal fruit harvesting eating, processing and drying.

    Urgent need of web designers support

    Please when writing us tell us specifically what interest you in our project and your relation and interest in the Spiritual path.

    🥗🍲🍛 Please don't apply if you are not happy and able to cook for yourself and others, from the seasonal foods available in our gardens and using the organic legumes, cereals and ingredients that we get from local producers. (we cook and do dish washing in shifts!)

    💧👕🧺we don't have a washing machine, just hand washing 👐🏽

    🐟🧼🐸All the waters flow into the phytoremediation so please don't bring soaps, toothpaste and chemical products that are not biodegradable.
    After several years of up and down, having more that 100 people per year visiting, learning, building, transforming and giving back space to life for Mother Nature to express her power, a new wave, more into intimate reconnection, is flowing in the project.
    Now besides farming as lifestyle the real goal is to live the quietness and the delicate energy of spiritual awareness and it's practices in and with Nature.

    Salvo is committed in a path of worship of the "invisible" trough the "visible", and veneration, meditation and devotion following the spiritual teachings of the Sufi master Shirdi Sai Baba and the manifestation of Nature in the visible aspect of Mother Kali trough the teachings of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa and the examples of many other saints and spiritual teachers from many spiritual traditions.
    Welcomed are spiritual seekers as friends, to share the practices and live it.

    For this reason the possession and consume of Alcohol and Tobacco, and all intoxicating activities, practices and philosophies that can drive us towards selfishness, materialism, violence, lust, anger and untruthfulness, cannot find a space in here. It's not a taboo or a prohibitionist attitude but rather a way to detox from worldly dilemmas that slow down our specific paths towards the Oneness of Self.

    Please be honest with yourself and us and avoid applying if that doesn't resonate with the kind of experience that you want to live.


    Our project started in June 2011 from a 15000sq meters abandoned orange orchard in a typical sicilian monoculture citrus production area.
    The project takes its name from the traditional Arab irrigation channel that runs through our land and carries water slowly and thoughtfully to nourish all forms of life in nature and fuels our purpose to regenerate!

    Through the Permaculture design model and thanks to the important help and energy of many friends and volunteers, it grew to become an oasis of biodiversity and one of the main hubs of the Italian and Sicilian permaculture network. It is well known as a model for production and experimental-oriented farming project, obtaining crop yields and still being a center of active learning and non-formal education. Over the course of the years, the experimental field also grew in size and the core team evolved around the project foundations and its life values.
    We chose Permaculture, because it can be considered a systemic approach and it includes many aspects of life, following in an harmonic way the different interactions within ecosystems. This system is based on three ethics: earth care, people care and fair share (also declined as future care), and a growing number of design principles!
    For us it's a conscious choice of life. Sharing spaces, emotions, time and elements, looking outside and inside of ourselves.

    Still Permaculture is but One possible choice, and not necessary the best one, and that has to be understood and lived trough a more conscious relationship with all the Other than Human beings.
    We aim to develop within ourselves and those coming to join us, this deep Divine connection within Nature, sense of the Place and of the animate spirits living within us.

    We want to host people with a REAL feeling of Curiosity, Care, Stewardship, Desire of Presence, Spiritual attitude and Active sense of Responsibility.

    THE PEOPLE living here:
    Linguist, social worker and permaculturist farmer , fond of meditation and world music. He bought the land back in 2011 after 10 years of travelling and doing voluntary work around the globe. He lives and works semi-permanently here. He's fond of nature’s intimacy, anthropic silence, group working, reading and sharing.
    He's working into Sufi remembrance practices, Advaita Vedanta-non dualistic hindu spirituality, world religions, anthropology, and loves to feel inebriated by Earthly and Divine Love.

    |Nuri, 10
    Salvo's son, who spends here a part of the week or some longer periods depending on school and holidays! He loves growing little plants in pots, climbing trees, getting muddy, finding toads, playing with the people he likes and have his own space for relax and reflection. He goes to a "normal" school to be in touch with "normal people and kids" in order to experience how life is lived by the 90% of people out there.

    And living just on the other side of the road our friend with which we collaborate and randomly organise activities, works and mutual help moments:

    |Angelo, 32
    Music teacher, part time farmer (you won't see him so much!), and passionate for eco-building. He plays sax and loves sharing music, especially Jazz, Cumbia, Gospel and world music.

    Apart from those mentioned above, we're part of a small but growing network of Salvo's friends and ex-volunteers of our project, that over the time decided to invest and do a deep life change, buying land in the nearby areas and deciding to create new collaborations and co-productions!

    This is an important point because we promote and support long term commitment, collaborations, new neighbours settlement in the area to extend and promote the value of our work as much as possible. So, if you're looking for a place where to move, this could be an option!


    The work-learning exchange:
    Being a volunteer or a collaborator doesn't strictly mean working a certain number of hours in exchange for food and stay, but a co-living within an environment where we try to keep humans within Nature's boundaries, where Plants and Animals share the space and time, energy and life, with and for us.
    We sometimes eat local meat but mostly plants, we respect them and nourish them while they do the same keeping us alive and healthy.
    The right attitude towards the activities that we do is taking a selfless Political and Spiritual action into this limited lifespan.

    During the seasons shared here you might be LEARNING BY DOING on these and many more aspects:
    - Concepts, politics, philosophy, tools and techniques of gardening in permaculture design and regenerative farming, Agroforestry, Ecology;
    - Food production from the vegetable garden, from seed to harvest and back to seed saving;
    - Growing fruits and plants for the Food Forest and for the Forest biology in itself;
    - Plant selection and propagation;
    - Food processing and conservation, fermentation, baking, eating!
    - Observing and respecting natural cycles in humans and all around us;
    - Medicinal plants, herbs, tinctures extractions and oils;
    - Water conservation, treatment and recycling;
    - Soil and forest ecology;
    - Mushroom growing, reproducing and consuming;
    - Animal integration and interactions;
    - Aquaculture, ponds, earthworks, swales and ditches;
    - Ecological waste management;
    - Natural building;
    - Social systems, social Justice, de-Colonisation, Food security, activism;
    - Financial strategies and surviving within capitalist state dominion😅;
    - DIY, manual ability from art to artifacts;
    - Spiritual ecology, deep reconnection and Faith.

    But you have to express yourself, ask questions and define your interests.

    beside this we might need your help with:

    -keeping the place if we're away to our other farm or for other reasons (we cannot leave the farm on it's own, animals and gardens never go on "holidays" !)
    -cleaning all around and keep the space tidy and neat!
    -play with Nuri and teach him your language and your culture.

    Please apply if you are able to stay from a minimum of 3weeks to up to 3 months. (summer time minimum one month) and have previous knowledge or deep interest in the fields above!


    Once your stay is confirmed we will send you by email or telegram/wapp message a pdf file with the directions to reach us.
    You are welcome with your car or your van, and if you come with public transportation we can come pick you up in the town near-by FROM MONDAY TO FRIDAY.
    Note that there is limited to no public transportation on Sunday and on Saturday and that we can't come to pick you up in Catania (airport nor city center).


    Flip Flops or similar : you will appreciate having a pair for inside common areas
    Sleeping bag : in winter (Oct - April) you might need to bring it, we do supply blankets but you will appreciate the extra warmth. Even in Sicily winter gets cold at night to -4 C
    Seeds & plants : to increase the biodiversity of our place you can bring seeds or babies of your local vegetables and trees. We are especially looking for every avocado types for a new project


    There are cats, chickens, fishes and a lot of wild animals (spiders, mice, snakes, gekkos, lizards, frogs, foxes, rabbits). For their sake and respect we cannot host other pets or domesticated beings.

    Your papers need to be in order for us to host you, unfortunately we are not in a position to be able to help neither with your visa situation nor with your citizenship process.
    Borders are there as the result of capitalism and human supremacism.. let's keep it in mind firmly and imagine alternatives.

    Please take a little time to introduce yourself, who you are, why you would like to come, what are your experiences and projects, and what skills and knowledge you can share.
    Beyond the daily work and our current projects you will be helping on, you are welcome to contribute in your own way. We are open to new ideas and love learning new skills (building stuff, auto-production, art, well-being…)!
    Once you commit we expect you to come. The running of the project relies on people and it causes us a lot of difficulties when someone doesn’t show up. So please be transparent, let us know if you are not sure.
    Any fear can develop into monsters.

    We hope you'll be able to:
    -recognise and develop your own skills
    -work collaboratively, share ideas and know how to contribute to the wider community
    -be inspired and visit great projects across Etna and nearby
    -have fun!
    -bring and promote Love.
    -being able to work and be also on your own if on that particular moment you're the only volunteer.

    If you fear silence and solitude, maybe wecan suggest you other friends farms around sicily without any concern ☀️

    We check emails once a week, but we always reply.

    Thanks for reading 🙏🏾🪔📿

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Art Projects
    Help with Eco Projects
    DIY and building projects
    Farmstay help
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Help around the house
    General Maintenance
    Help with Computers/ Internet
  • UN sustainability goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN sustainability 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

    in our project you might learn (depending on your curiosity, your ability to ask and study):
    - How Permaculture concepts can be declined and how we live out of farming
    -organic farming
    -learning the techniques of Market Gardening - bio-intensive faming
    -how to grow your own food
    -how to cook the food that you produce and how to store it and preserve it
    -how it is like to be living in a small farming community
    -how to harvest, prune and care of fruit trees and vegetables
    -water management
    -how to elaborate good quality compost and fertilizers
    -how to feed the soil in order to feed humanity
    -how to swim in a pond
    -how sweet blood oranges can be!

  • Projects involving children

    Projects involving children

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

  • Help



    all the timing can change depending on season and weather to adapt our time and body on the rhythm of the seasons
    ideal timetable that seldom we're able to follow...😅
    Sunrise morning meditation warmup (optional)
    7.30 breakfast
    9-11.30morning check-up walk and practical activities*
    11.30 cooking lunch and dinner together
    13.45 lunch
    15-17afternoon practical activities
    17.30-19.30 individual time

    *practical activities are all the scheduled manual works of the season

    You can choose 2days off whenever you feel like as long as we manage so that someone among us is at the farm, since chickens and gardens require our constant presence!

    Volunteers can stay from a minimum of 4 weeks (to a maximum of 3 months ) and those having previous experience in the upcoming works and living in communities are especially welcome.

    Remember that You might be working on your own, in a couple or in group.

    |All year round
    Managing the garden from seed to harvest, with water and love
    Feeding the chickens, and give them water and love
    Implementing and maintaining structures and projects : wood houses, lanes, water systems, swales, ponds
    Cooking is organized in turns, feel free to share your favourite recipes
    Cleaning regularly, everyone takes on the responsibility to leave things and spaces as clean as found or even cleaner
    find out new stuff to experiment!

    |Orchards seasonal work
    January, February : pruning fruit trees (other than olives and citrus)
    January to March : picking blood oranges
    May, June, September : pruning and grafting citrus
    October, November : picking olives
    October to May : picking lemons & spreading manure and compost fertilizers

  • Languages spoken

    English: Fluent
    Spanish: Fluent
    Italian: Fluent
    Portuguese: Fluent
    French: Intermediate
    Romanian: Intermediate

  • Accommodation


    You will be hosted in one of the two tiny houses where you might be sharing the space with another guest depending on the moment and requests
    The bathroom and the kitchen facilities are all shared and in a separate space.
    There is no wifi.
    There are 2 different compost toilets.
    Pets are not allowed.

    We eat mainly what our garden offers us : delicious and organic fruits, vegetables and eggs. For everything that is not (yet) auto-produced, we supply ourselves directly from local and biological producers.
    Sometimes we might eat meat for specific celebrations but never Pig or Fish/seafood.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    Expenses contribution
    We suggest a 25€ weekly contribution per person to cover the common expenses like externally supplied goods (rice, pasta, cereals, legumes, coffee, sugar, toilet paper and soaps, gasoline to go and get drinking water to the town and so on, no stupid low quality food, just the basics because we try not to support as much as possible iniquous systems) , electricity and gas.
    Over the course of our experience of 10 years hosting, this is the amount we calculated as an additional cost per person that we cannot cover on our own.
    We're not a "business oriented" project, we don't work with tourism so the help you give as a volunteer cannot cover extra expenses like this because this would mean extra costs that we're not able to cover. Nothing is compulsory because we can understand and support travellers with economical problems 💚. There's no shame or fear, together we grow.

  • 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

  • Space for parking camper vans

    Space for parking camper vans

    we do have space for 2 campervans but let us know the size first! We cannot accept guests with pets.

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    depends on the task and period! 25 hours, 5 days a week

  • ...

    This host charges a fee

    read more
Host ref number: 318267653313

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