We are a family of four. We live on our cattle farm at Yass, NSW. We have two children - a fourteen-year old boy and a ten-year old girl, a dog called George, and a few (mostly retired) horses. We are pretty busy running our 600+ stud cattle herd and property as well as maintaining and developing our large country garden and taking care of everything in and around our house. We always have new projects on the go (from sustainable landcare projects involving planting native Australian trees and shrubs to provide wildlife corridors and protect waterways to elaborate garden projects like developing a new parterre garden) as well as lots of maintenance jobs (from painting the walls around our pool and vegetable garden to fixing irrigation and fences). We enjoy spending time together out and about on our farm. Our kids would like us to say that they are both skilled drivers (although our daughter thought she should mention that she can't yet drive a manual vehicle... even though she is already ten and her brother can drive tractors, cars, utes and motorbikes!). We love to cook (actually, mostly we love to eat), enjoy an eclectic range of music and are interested in meeting new people to share a part of our life in exchange for some help.
We signed up to Workaway in 2016 and hosted ten travellers in 2016 and 2017. We have had a great experience each time. We have generally planned to have one workaway guest (or a couple) at a time and have found the experience of having travellers become part of our family rewarding and quite special. At times we have had an overlap of workaway guests and this has also been a lot of fun.
We haven't hosted any Workawayers for a couple of years, but are now keen to do it all again! We would like one or two people to stay with us from some time late in July 2019 for up to three or four months. We will need help with caring for our children for brief periods before and after school on weekdays (mainly ferrying them to the school bus or to after school activities) and a range of other tasks around the house and garden. There will also be plenty of opportunity to experience farm life. You can expect to have quite a lot of free time during the day on weekdays, and to have some time 'home alone'.
Babysitting and creative play
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help around the house
We have enjoyed the experience of hosting travellers to our home so far. We have enjoyed including our guests in our family activities and have shared a lot of fun times and interesting conversations. We enjoy eating and talking around the dining table and have enjoyed the opportunity to learn about the lives, experiences and of course food cultures of our guests.
A highlight for our previous workawayers has been to be able to spend time on a working Australian farm. Visitors at any time of the year will have opportunity to spend time with us and learn while we go about undertaking tasks with our cattle and understand what it is like on an Australian stud cattle farm. In the second half of 2019 our main activities on the property will be calving, feeding cattle, mustering cattle, spraying weeds, and fencing,
In 2019 we need help caring for our children for brief periods before and after school. This will mainly involve driving them to the school bus or to after school activities. A valid Driver's Licence is essential.
We also need help with a range of other gardening, maintenance and cleaning tasks. We have lots of projects we'd like to complete (some started and others still at the concept stage!) as well as general maintenance such as cleaning our pool, weeding and mulching the garden, and other everyday household tasks. We are also keen to progress the next stage of a big tree planting program involving the planting of native Australian plants on our property.
We generally expect workawayers to spend about 25 hours/week helping out. This will include some time at the start of the day, and in the afternoons/early evenings to help with our children before and after school. The exact schedule will depend both on our farm commitments and your plans on days off.
There will be plenty of time in the middle of the day for you to explore the local area, have a trip to Canberra, swim in the pool, go for a walk or just have a rest. Our past workaway guests have had opportunity to visit many local attractions and discover the local region.
We have a large room in our house that can be used for sleeping and recreation. You will have your own TV and separate space. You will have access to unlimited WiFi. You will also be welcome to share the rest of the home with our family, including our swimming pool. You will have free time to use as you please - either enjoying our home and property or travelling to nearby attractions.
We love to eat and have a well stocked fridge and pantry. We all help ourselves for breakfast and lunch but plan to cook the evening meal for us all to share. We cook a wide variety of food and will try to accommodate different tastes and preferences where possible. We are happy for guests to cook or bake with us!
Our property is about a ten-minute drive from the town of Yass: a great town located about one hour's drive from Canberra - Australia's national capital. We have four distinct seasons with hot dry summers (from December to February) and cold winters (from June to August).
Yass is an interesting, historic town with a vibrant community. Yass is just off the Hume Highway - about three hours' drive from Sydney and about six hours' drive from Melbourne. Yass Junction is on the main railway line between Sydney and Melbourne and we are happy to pick you up from the train station (or from the bus) if you don't have your own transport.
You will have quite a lot of free time to explore the local area. Our property is just down the road from Burrinjuck Dam where you can swim and go fishing. There is also plenty to do on our property. It is very scenic with interesting terrain for walks, motorbike and horse riding. You can expect to see lots of cattle as well as native Australian animals such as kangaroos and wallabies and maybe an echidna, wombat or lizard. There is also a lovely creek and dams suitable for swimming (if you dare) and kayaking. We also have a swimming pool and an extensive (though developing) garden.
Canberra also offers visitors a lot of interesting day trip opportunities (and we can drive you there) from walks around the lakes, hikes up Mt Ainslee to visits to the many (mostly free) museums and galleries (for example, the National Museum of Australia, the National Art Gallery, the Australian War Memorial, the National Portrait Gallery, Questacon (the national Science Museum), Parliament House and the National Library).
If you are interested in going away for short side trips during your visit, we are close enough to the coast and the mountains (snow and skiing in winter) for overnight trips.
Winters in Yass are very cold, summers are very hot, and Autumn and spring are somewhere in between. Please pack accordingly!
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week