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Hi! My name is Natalie and my husband’s name is Damien. We are a youngish couple who have bought our first house just outside Bundaberg, in Queensland. Together with our 11-month-old dog, Banjo we live on 34 acres of a partially cleared 'bush block'. Most of the acreage is still natural bush with endless gum trees and kangaroos!
On the part that is cleared, we are starting to set up a sustainable lifestyle. While we are not experts, we try to employ permaculture principles to all of our building and design processes and our way of living.
Our house is a 75-year-old Queenslander in a semi-rural area. Both the house and the property need a bit of TLC and we would absolutely love some help! Therefore, we would love someone who has experience with home renovations or a possible tradie such as a builder, carpenter, electrician, plumber, or landscaper (or someone who is a good worker, quick to learn and is good at visualising) to volunteer with us, but this is NOT essential as there are lots to do for people with no experience, like cooking, cleaning, weeding, digging holes, planting plants, possible painting, gardening, mowing, whipper snipping, etc. In addition, Damien is a wonderful and patient teacher who is always happy to teach you new things like driving a tractor, fencing, basic building, etc.
We are passionate travellers and have travelled to over 50 countries together. We both love to explore new cultures and to meet people from a variety of backgrounds. We would describe ourselves as hardworking but also easy going and adaptable. We have been Helpers ourselves in a few countries so we have experienced what it’s like to be a helper (and have some ideas on how to make your stay more memorable).
Damien is a fitter and turner and I am a secondary teacher (English, English as an Additional Language, history, and geography). We work hard but when we are not working, Damien likes to go mountain bike riding and go to car shows. Whereas I like to practise yoga and meditate. We both like being outdoors and often go for walks, go to the beach or river or go for a bike ride. You are more than welcome to join us for any or all of these activities!
Smoking severely affects Damien’s health, so for that reason, we will not be able to accept smokers at our property. Sorry!
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help with Eco Projects
Help around the house
Be surrounded by peaceful bush land, see kangaroos in the backyard, learn about Australia and if you like, practice your English or deepen your yoga practice with a qualified English and yoga teacher!
Around the property during the day, you can go for solitary walks in the bush with the birds and kangaroos, read a book in the hammock, do some yoga on the deck, or chill out in the entertainment area, play pool, take pictures of the sunsets, and enjoy the peace and quiet.
After a day’s work, spend the evening sharing travel stories and photos while sitting around the camp fire and gazing up at the stars in our peaceful bush setting. Eat some seafood or join us for a typical Aussie BBQ (if that suits you).
We are also happy for you to join us on the weekends for outings to the beach or river, bike rides, walks, etc. but if you prefer to do your own thing, we can also guide you to the points of interest within our area.
Simply put, we offer a typical Australian life style.
Building/ Maintenance Projects:
Our house is tired and old and needs updating. At present, we are planning to convert one of the rooms into an ensuite, update the kitchen, stain the deck, and fix up the floorboards in the living room and master bedroom.
We have just finished building a chicken coop and are about halfway through building a composting toilet. Our next projects may include: repairing the shed roof, painting the shed, building a fire pit or two, building a double swinging seat, a fruit and veg stall, etc.
...but this will all depend on the skill set of the Helper.
Also, the garden is big and needs some weeding and landscaping. We plan to plant some fruit trees and build another 4 veggie gardens (we already have 4), and the grass needs to be mowed regularly. We are currently in the process of creating an irrigation system, and clearing some weeds from the bush.
As we work long hours, we always need help with cooking and cleaning around the house.
Alternatively, I would also love someone from Latin America to help me with my Spanish or someone who can teach me the ukulele.
The majority of the help we seek is helping with house renovations, cleaning, gardening, and general laboring help. This is physical, hands-on, and therefore you need to be reasonably fit and strong. Our hours are flexible in exchange for nice accommodation and food.
In saying that, we are open to suggestions, so if you think you can help us in some way and want to stay, let us know! I'm sure we can work something out. 😀
When you write to us, please indicate where your skill set lies and what you’d be interested in doing and we will try to accommodate.
We have two rooms for visitors. Each room contain a queen-sized bed that can sleep one or two people comfortably, however you will be sharing a bathroom with us (until we get that ensuite built!)
We have a decent sized living room and an outdoor entertainment area with a bar, pool table and spa (once we get them up and running again).
We also have a big kitchen and a wide veranda. We can share meals or you can do your own cooking, either way we will supply the food. We are already mostly vegetarian so we are more than happy to go full vegetarian or vegan for the right person (as long as you share some recipes with us and help out with the cooking). We usually expect you to get your own breakfast and lunch from our supplies and we will all eat together in the evening and share some of the cooking/ cleaning up.
We are also open to setting up a large tent with a comfortable mattress for those who'd prefer to be outdoors. This is especially nice when the nights are cool but not too cold- Feb to Mar and Sept to Nov. You would still be sharing the inside bathroom with us and all other spaces inside the house would be available to you, including WiFi.
Please be mindful that we have limited WiFi and once it is used for the month, it slows down. I rely on WiFi at home for work, so please be mindful of this when using the internet. Thanks 😊
There is no public transport nearby, so having your own car would be ideal. However, we are happy to pick you up from Bundaberg when you arrive and drop you back when you depart. We are also happy to take you with us when we are heading into town or for you to join us on weekend activities. It’s completely up to you. :)
Bundaberg is home to some beautiful beaches. We are ideally located within a 30-minute drive from several beaches- Woodgate, Bagara, Moore Park, and Mon Repos. Our favourite is Mon Repos Beach, where turtles come to shore to lay their eggs (usually Nov-Mar). If you come during the right season you might be able to see the big ones and/or the baby turtles at the same time (usually Jan). There is a walkway that follows the coastline all along, great for walking, jogging, or bike riding. Bargara is another nice beach with shops, cafes, and restaurants. Woodgate is 16kms of beautiful sandy shoreline. There are free BBQs and a pub.
From Bundaberg, you can take a boat to Lady Musgrave Island, at the start of the Great Barrier Reef, travel to the biggest sand island, Fraser Island, or visit the Bundy Bear at the Bundaberg Rum distillery. If you arrive during whale watching season (July-Nov), you can also go whale watching.
We sometimes go out on a friend's boat fishing and enjoying the fantastic weather, you are also welcome to join us if we head out during your stay.
We look forward to hearing from you!
Natalie and Damien
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
We have acres of space for workawayers to park their campervan or motorhome during their time here. We also have plenty of room to set up tents.
More than two
Maximum 5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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