We are looking for a volunteer to help out on our 10 ha farm/smallholding with the maintenance of the farm, the house, the garden and from time to time with animal husbandry tasks.
Our household consists of my mother Annie and myself Nina. Originally from the Netherlands, Dutch is our native language, but we are fluent in English and we speak reasonably good French. If you want to learn French, we would be happy to speak French with you, although at times we may have some difficulty expressing ourselves fully in French, and will probably end up speaking English.
Unfortunately at the age of 90 Annie now tires easily. She cannot cope very well with too much disruption and we can therefore only accommodate one volunteer at a time for one or two weeks initially, to be extended if she is coping well.
We are very animal orientated and our two dogs and five cats, all very friendly, live with us as part of the family. Furthermore we have 47 alpacas, as well as two ponies, a donkey and chickens. It is therefore imperative that a volunteer who comes here is an animal lover, as well as a non-smoker.
Members of the public can visit the farm to learn about alpacas and the different stages involved in the transformation of their fleece into spun yarn and felt.
Help in the house
Having lived here for many years, for those who are interested, we are happy to share our cultural (and) culinary experiences of the Netherlands, France and Brittany. For those who want to learn new skills, I shall be happy to share my knowledge of animal care (I am a (retired) veterinary surgeon) and what I have learned myself about farming. I also practice the craft of the transformation of wool and would happily teach a volunteer to spin, felt, dye wool, machine knit, etc.
As this is a working animal farm, as well as a tourist attraction, there are chores to do around the farm all year through (fencing, mucking out stables, maintenance of paddocks and equipment, etc). At the moment our main priority is the garden, as well as maintenance and repairs around the farm.
The garden is always in need of attention. Hedges and some trees may need to be cut back or felled. All of this is physical work, although not hard. We have petrol power tools and use tractor power for the really heavy work!
At all times we can use volunteers with farming/gardening experience as well as building skills. We have some little projects that we would like to see realized. which will involve bricklaying, carpentry, plumbing, and plastering.
If you want, although not strictly necessary, you can also be involved with the alpacas, and help with the training and husbandry tasks (clipping claws, etc) or with sorting out the fleeces, which is great and easy work for rainy days!
So if you think that you may be able to help us, please get in touch. We would love to hear from you.
english, french, dutch
Our accommodation is limited to two guest rooms. If you are our only guest, you may use both rooms as a bedroom with separate sitting room. The smaller room is very light and has a beautiful far-reaching view over the valley. The second room is larger and has television with french and English channels.
Bathroom and toilet are shared, but only a few steps away from both rooms.
We will of course provide all the meals. We bake most of our bread, we make our own yoghurt and try too eat healthily with produce from the garden, fields or hedgerows whenever possible. But we are not vegetarians and have little or no experience with vegetarian cooking. If a volunteer wants to share his/her culinary experiences with us and help out with the cooking, this would be greatly appreciated. But we are not comfortable when being asked to provide for restricted or demanding diets.
Our house ls located in a beautiful area in the heart of the National Parc of the Monts d'Arrée in Finistere, where there is lots to see and do. The house is set on a hill, with far reaching views over the Valley de d'Aulne and the Montagnes Noires in the distance.
The surrounding countryside has a wild beauty with both woodland and moreland within walking distance. The footpaths start at the gate of the property.
The towns of Brest and Quimper are both only a 30 minute drive away, as is the sea with it's sandy beaches. Our town has a railway station, with several daily connections to the major towns in Finistere and to the rest of France via the high speed rail link.
Due to this central location it is an ideal place for tourists who want explore this part of Brittany, be it by train, car, bicycle, on horseback or on foot. For volunteers without their own transport we can provide bikes or take them to the nearest rail or bus station.
The region is rich in history, with traces of occupation dating back to the bronze age. The strong celtic identity and the revival of the traditional Breton music and dance is evident in the many village festivals that take place nearly every week during the summer months.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Probably about 4 to 5 hours; hours and times may be variable, depending on the weather, visitor bookings, etc
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