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WHO ARE WE
We are a retired professional couple welcoming Work-away helpers as singles or a couple to our property. We're in the process of integrating permaculture design principles and ethics on our property. Eventually we would like to turn our Farm into a place of Learning. Bob still currently works occasionally in education.
The property is 76 acres of mixed woods and fields with trails throughout.
We have lots of trail maintenance for the sugar bush, maple syrup production in the spring, Chickens for eggs, organic gardens with Hugel-kultur beds. We would like our helpers to weed, cultivate, build new structures (Natural Building) cook some meals and trim trees. Depending on the time of year harvesting of crops may be included. We invite Work-away helpers of any age or experience but some building skills are appreciated. We are interested in anyone who has any background in architecture especially natural building. But all are welcome. Some of the new projects may include: outdoor shower, outdoor compost toilet,, compost-powered water heater and small retreat/cabins in the woods.
What we do: Permaculture, Mushroom Logs (Shiitake), Greenhouse, Maple Syrup, Preserves, Fermentation,Fruit trees and Bushes, Seed Saving with local organization, Organic gardens, mulching, composting and compost tea,
Volunteers please bring plenty of old, warm working clothes. This is Canada expect a variety of weather, Waterproof clothing are invaluable as we work out in all weathers. We don't have a stock of clothes to lend everyone - there are just too many people, so please make sure you come with everything you need we only make trips to town as necessary. Quality outdoor footwear are essential. Working gloves, water bottles and flashlights are useful. Bring all your own toiletries, sun cream, toothpaste etc.
'There is no such thing as bad weather - just bad clothes!' Come prepared for the worst.
YES, There are mosquitoes, please come prepared (insect repellent etc) (June to Sept)
Were looking for you if;
You are, motivated, energetic, people of all ages with experience of this sort of lifestyle or a real desire to learn about it. To get the most from this experience you need to be happy with doing hard physical work outside in all weathers. You need to be adaptable, flexible, focused, curious and enjoy the company of a very mixed group of people (We host as many as 5 helpers at a time depending on the season). You need to be able to work alone or as part of a team - you will be doing both. It is not possible to do this work if you are not is good physical condition.
A willingness to learn about more sustainable living and permaculture and try, is just as important as a skill. Age has proven not to be a barrier to ability. Because you will be doing many very varied tasks that can be quite complex, we speak both English and French here. Its important to have a good command of one or both of these two languages.
Other things you need to know;
Minimum 2 week stay, with a possibility for a longer stay.
Work 5 hours a day 5 days a week both indoors and out in exchange for accommodation and 3 meals daily. Provide your own work clothes, work gloves and boots. If you have your own computer as there is Wifi but no TV.
Please note that cleaning up after yourself is not considered working time but is part of the collective adventure of cohabiting. This includes light housekeeping, cooking meals and shared food preparation and post meal clean-up. If you have special dietary needs you will have to provide your own 'special' food. Most meals are vegetarian and healthy.
Work-away helpers should have there own health or travel insurance before they come.
We do some fun things as well, Work-away helpers are welcome to attend; Drum circle , full moon potluck dinners and weekend bonfires at the house.
The Historic City of Kingston is centralized between our capital of Ottawa, Montreal and Toronto. We live 20 minutes North of Kingston and offers a variety of sites to see. There is no public transportation. Rides into town can be arranged. We will pick up at the Kingston VIA rail or bus station.
We do not accept smokers what so ever, or pets "if you SMOKE please DO NOT apply" . Volunteer help is broken up between the morning and the evening, we do not go out in the very hot part of the day.
We hope to hear from you and welcome you to our small homestead
We would like to Skype any Workaway Helpers previous to their commitment to come here.
Bob and Michelle
Cooking / shopping
Help with Eco project
Help in the house
Helpers may learn many various things, such as; natural building, permaculture techniques, Maple Syrup production, tree planting, seed saving and gardening.
Please keep in mind this is also a cultural exchange as well as worktrade. We are happy to learn about you and your families as well as your travels. We will try to involve you in many of the other activities we do off the farm as well.
Projects for 2020
Stone and Brick walls, Adobe Clay Floor, Studio in the woods
Help with Gardens (Planting/Harvesting), Trail Maintenance, Eco Projects there is a possibility of a workshop in Pallet construction. We expect all workaways to help with all meals, cooking as well as preparing for meals and some light housekeeping chores as necessary.
On our property we strive to build one eco-project per season. We intend to build outdoor showers and composting toilets using natural building techniques.
Bob is a Certified Permaculture Designer and Educator.
The property is being designed with Permaculture in mind and currently we are putting in a nursery of fruit and nut trees, bushes and shrubs. Some work will be quite physical. Weeding, cultivating plants, stacking wood and using tools and equipment.
Workaway help should have good initiative and work ethics and be self-starters.
Workaway help should come prepared for inclement weather such as rain, snow or mud depending on the season.
We offer; Shared or Private room with Bunks and or Queen Size Bed in our home. Internet access, Hot showers. Our home is a Log house structure with all modern conveniences on 76 acres outside a small village. Food will be healthy and mostly vegetarian or Vegan. We are near Kingston, Ontario, Canada
Work-away helpers can email for times we have available during the months of March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November
Maple Syrup Season 2020 - This is our most popular position for work-a-way helpers and we take only 2 helpers (usually a couple) at this time. Please book early if you are looking to experience the making of Maple Syrup on a small scale during the months of March and April this is a 4 weeks position.
WE NOW HAVE ONE (1) LONG TERM INTERN VOLUNTEER POSITION AVAILABLE STARTING IN MAY/JUNE 2020 THIS WILL BE for 3 TO 4 MONTHS. The Intern will be working mostly with the Agro-Forestry Permaculture Project which includes; Greenhouse, tree/shrub planting, alley cropping, tree nursery care as well as some construction projects. To apply for this position please email early in Jan 2020. Students who are using this for a University credit are welcome.
Please email if interested in this opportunity to learn more about Permaculture and sustainable living.
All work-aways must have travel insurance with them.
Please feel free to email for availability or cancellation alerts
Please keep in mind that this is a volunteer position and for entry into Canada you must meet a certain criteria (TOURISM AND VISITING FIRST). Please read all entry requirements for Canada by visiting the Canadian Immigration Website . Please be aware that we DO NOT write letters of invitation. All travel documents (eTA, Visa, etc) are the responsibility of the traveler. Thank you
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
More than two
We expect 4 to 5 hrs help per day 5 days per week
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