my partner and I (from Scotland and England) run a donkey sanctuary in a remote location in the mountains of south east crete. We also have horses, a pony and dogs and cats. We are a registered non profit organisation in Greece and as such rely on help from volunteers. We take in donkeys that are old unwanted and often abused and they live their last days in freedom and knowing they are loved. The dogs we have here are dumped in the area and we look after them until we can find a new home for them. Some of them will stay with us forever. We have olive trees and a vegetable garden.
In the tourist season we sometimes get visitors who like to walk around and learn about all the animals and our work. We offer a glamping experience and sometimes need help catering for guests.
The area that the sanctuary is in is amazingly scenic but very rural and remote.
I also make craft items to sell in monthly online fundraising auctions - so anybody with artistic talent willing to help by donating their work would be so appreciated.
Whilst we would prefer single people, we can accommodate a couple but they must be happy to work independantly.
DIY and building projects
Help with Eco Projects
Anatoli is a traditional village. The locals are mainly farmers and mainly more elderly. Although they do not speak english they are very friendly to visitors. There are minoan sights in the area.
Ideally we would like help for about 5 hours each day for 5 days a week. On somedays we may ask for help for longer than these times and it is essential that you can be flexible as working on the land and with animals is always unpredictable. We would prefer long term stays for at least 1 month.
Daily tasks involve - cleaning manure from fields and shelters, feeding and cleaning water containers, Making sure all animals appear healthy, treating any that need treatment. Walking and feeding and cleaning dogs. grooming animals and generally getting to know them all. There are also general tasks such as tidying up, clearing vegetation.
Duties vary according to the time of year, in summer months we would want you to help out in split shifts, early morning and early evening. In winter and spring time we would like help in the morning although sometimes would ask that you do a split shift.
No experience is necessary but a genuine love of animals and sense of humour and willingness to help with whatever task presents itself, is. We want people who are cheerful.
At the end of the summer months there is always repair and construction projects that needs to be done to keep our animals safe and warm and dry over the winter. In the spring time we need to tidy and prepare for visitors. In the hot summer months all physical hard tasks are done early morning and late afternoon. Barring emergencies we do not work when it gets too hot and do not expect this of volunteers.
We work according to daylight hours and as such often start early in the morning.
in the winter time, if possible, we would like to collect our olives so that we can make olive oil.
BEFORE APPLYING PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING:-
Helpers must be
1) flexible and cheerful and not 'clock watchers'.
2) Willing to follow instructions and NOT just do things their own way.
3) Put the needs of the animals before their own needs
4) Understand that the chores can be mundane and boring at times but the animals must be made as comfortable as possible at all times.
5) Happy to help with whatever task presents itself
VOLUNTEERS WILL BE LIVING IN OUR HOME. THEY MUST CLEAN UP AFTER THEMSELVES AND NOT LEAVE FOOD LYING AROUND AND DIRTY DISHES. AFTER AN INITIAL WARNING THEY WILL BE ASKED TO LEAVE IF THE HOUSE IS IN A MESS AND NOT RESPECTED.
WE HAVE INTERNET CONNECTION AT THE SANCTUARY
A room with attached bathroom in the village of Anatoli - approximately 1 1/2 kms from the main sanctuary. It has either a single bed which can be made into 1 double. If there are 2 people there will not be a lot of space but it is possible. There is a microwave/grill and small fridge and kettle so it is possible to make simple meals in the room. On occasions volunteers may live in the main house where is a log burning stove and cooking facilities. Volunteers will be asked to leave if they consistently disrespect our house.
This is a traditional mountain village(about 600m high) with maybe 150 residents, We are the only foreigners. There is a little shop and a couple of cafenions where basic and cheap food can be bought.
The sanctuary is lower down at approx, 450 metres. We would like you to walk dowhill to the sanctuary in the morning and we can take you back at end of your shift.
On your volunteering days we will provide one(non- meat) cooked meal a day and provide some ingredients for the other 2 so that they can be prepared in the volunteers room. In the evening volunteers must be happy to spend time alone.
We will provide bread milk tea and coffee, butter and jam, cereal and milk. This will be the breakfast ingredients.
Although we can accommodate 2 people at a squeeze, we would prefer a single person
STRICTLY NO SMOKING PLEASE
Experience living in a traditional cretan mountain village. If you enjoy nature and quietness this is for you. Working with donkeys is something that most people adore, they are amazing animals and very affectionate.
The only night life in the village is sitting in the cafenion and watching and chatting to the locals who are always very interested in visitors.
The village of Anatoli is quite remote. During school terms there is a bus leaving the village before 7 in the morning and returning around 2-3 in the afternoon, This goes to the town of Ierapetra.
There are beautiful walks from the village and sanctuary, arcaelogical sites to visit and plenty of interesting birds and flowers.
We have many rare and unusual flowers in the area and if you are interested in birds you will enjoy seeing a variety of birds including the griffon vultures who have a colony nearby.
There is an early morning bus to the town of ierapetra and the sea - which returns in the afternoon. It is always possible to get a lift to the town with one of our neighbours or ourselves if we are going.
We retire into our caravan at the sanctuary when it gets dark and do not socialise in the evenings. Volunteers must be happy to spend time alone - lots of books to read, dvds to watch or go to the cafenion.
There are beaches about 20 minutes drive away.
Fabulous walking, bird watching, archaelogical sites, mountain biking.
Cars and scooters can be hired in the town of Ierapetra.
There is an early morning bus from the village which returns mid afternoon to the town.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
5 hours (more if possible!) Maximum 25 hours a week!