Cheerful, reliable dog-lovers welcome!
We are Charlie and Joanna and we live in the countryside near to Cambridge. Our 2 daughters after time spent travelling (and volunteering) are now at university (one of them recently returned from studying in Japan), so our household usually consists of two people and a large dog (friendly, bouncy and always pleased to meet new people) I also have other dogs to stay too, so you need to be relaxed and happy around dogs. We go for long walks with the dogs every day so there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy the countryside.
We are renovating our house, so there are always lots of jobs to do, including helping me with day to day tasks of keeping the house clean and tidy, general maintenance, basic gardening etc.
I enjoy cooking and I am happy to show you how to make some traditional British recipes (although we eat food inspired by worldwide cuisines) and we also welcome learning new dishes from our volunteers.
We have been hosting volunteers for over six years now (positive reviews on another site) and thoroughly enjoy getting to know new people and share our way of life.
When you first contact me, please let me know what it is that you has attracted you to this placement and what it is that you can bring in terms of skills or experience. Please also tell me of any experience you have with dogs.
DIY and building projects
Help around the house
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
We live close to Cambridge and I often take volunteers to visit other local places of interest such as Ely and Bury St Edmunds.
We live in the countryside and I enjoy foraging for edible foodstuffs - depending on the season these may be elderflowers, blackberries and other fruits, fungi etc. I enjoy cooking and preserving and I am happy to share this interest and my experience with you.
We lead a fairly quiet life, but enjoy travelling (we have just returned from 3 weeks in Japan) and always enjoy chatting and sharing our travellers tales.
We are happy to help you develop your spoken English.
We require help with a range of jobs around the house and garden - these may include sanding, painting, carpentry, general housework (hoovering, ironing, dusting, cleaning windows etc) and gardening.
If you have skills in sewing, building, carpentry or plumbing you will be especially welcome as we are renovating our house and have a range of projects to tackle!
We would like to tidy up/landscape the garden so experience and imagination here would be helpful. Routine tasks include weeding, hedge trimming and lawn mowing.
Other tasks will vary according to the season, for example picking apples in the autumn, sowing seeds in the spring or wrapping presents in December!
You will live as part of our family. We offer a comfortable room which can be made up with a single bed, twin beds or a large double bed, depending on who is staying. There is an en suite shower and toilet.
We eat our meals together, breakfast is cereal/toast, lunch a light meal such as soup/sandwiches and we eat our main meal together in the evening. We eat meat, but I am happy to cater for vegetarians. Please let me know about any dietary needs or preferences when you first contact me . We enjoy sampling foods from other countries so you will always be welcome to share your favourite dishes with us.
We expect people to participate as family members, helping prepare and clear up after meals, laying the table, generally keeping the house clean and tidy, not disappearing to their room and emerging as the food is served.
We can only accommodate non-smokers.
We are close to Cambridge and I can meet you there if you travel by train or coach. Cambridge is just an hour by train from London, 30 minutes from Stansted airport. We live 5 minutes walk from the bus stop, where there are buses every hour to Cambridge, Newmarket and Bury St Edmunds.
We have bikes available for you to explore locally and there are lots of good walks nearby. There is a swimming pool and gym two miles away. Cambridge itself has many attractions, whether you enjoy museums, arts, shopping or simply absorbing the atmosphere.
We are close to Anglesey Abbey, a National Trust property with a small but interesting house, extensive gardens and a watermill. Wicken Fen, the first nature reserve to come under National Trust ownership is about 8 miles away - great if you like birdwatching or want to see what the local landscape looked like before the fens were drained.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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