Non-profit looking for help with summer camp and a conservation cemetery in south-central Washington State, USA

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United States

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    Last activity

    23/11/2020

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  2020 

 Min stay requested: at least 1 month

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  • Description

    Description

    We are a non-profit land trust organization that runs: summer camps and other outdoor education programs, a natural-burial conservation cemetery, and a conservation program that manages 1,138 acres of pine/oak forest and grassland on the eastern edge of the Columbia River Gorge in south central Washington state. The ranch is also home to a community of people and animals year-round. There are currently six full-time residents at the ranch, a couple staff members that live off-site, and always other wonderful guests, volunteers, and program participants coming and going.

    ***COVID updates and protocols:
    We are not running summer camp or traditional programs but *are* running low-density, physically-distanced family camps through our programming season. Volunteers and staff are assigned to "households" after a quarantine period for bathroom and kitchen access (typically 2-4 people in any one household), and no one shares indoor spaces with people outside of their household. For projects, everyone is expected to physically distance and wear a mask whenever we need to get within 6 feet of each other. Everyone wears a mask around their necks for easy on-off accessibility.

    What we do:
    • Run 8 weeks of summer camp in the summer and host numerous other field trips and retreats for children and adults (spring, summer, and fall)
    • Manage our 20-acre, natural-burial, conservation cemetery
    • Care for many animals - we share the land with about 20 horses, a flock of chickens and pigeons, a herd of goats, seasonal pigs, several cats, and a few dogs. (Not to mention all the wildlife!)
    • Lots of gardening (April-October) – we produce a lot of food!
    • Forestry (November-March) – wildfire-fuels reduction and forest health management, designed to be fire-wise and climate-resilient
    • Conservation projects, including invasive species removal, native plantings, etc.
    • Live off-grid, and manage the off-grid systems
    • Various ranch projects, including building and fixing things, fencing and unfencing, trail maintenance, moving objects from place to place, and cleaning… so much cleaning.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Gardening
    DIY and building projects
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    General Maintenance
    Help around the house
    Animal Care
    Teaching

  • UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN goals
    No poverty
    Zero hunger
    Good health and well-being
    Quality education
    Gender equality
    Clean water and sanitation
    Affordable and clean energy
    Decent work and economic growth
    Industries, innovation and infrastructure
    Reduce inequality
    Sustainable cities and communities
    Responsible consumption and production
    Climate action
    Life below water
    Life on land
    Peace, justice and strong institutions
    Partnerships for the goals
  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    General homesteading skills, animal care, help with kids, living with off-grid systems, gardening and landscaping, conservation practices like invasive species ID and forest health basics... Other possibilities (but not guarantees) also include chainsaw safety and skills, driving a tractor, occasional horse rides or horse connection time, driving a stick shift, power tools, etc.

  • Help

    Help

    Volunteers have the opportunity to come as a general ranch volunteer, or to focus their service in our garden, forestry project, or lodge-keeping (although *everyone* gets pulled into various kinds of general tasks and chores, and volunteers should always expect to be involved in our programs at least a little bit).

    • Garden Intern (April-October) – all the garden tasks! Starting plants from seed, transplanting into the greenhouse and garden, irrigation, thinning, weeding (so much weeding), harvesting, etc.

    • Forestry Intern (November-March) – thinning our dryland forests to promote forest health and fire-wise landscapes; felling trees, limbing branches, pulling brush, cutting firewood, burn piles, etc.

    • Lodgekeeping (Year-Round) – keeping our beautiful community space looking sharp! Basic household chores, occasional deep cleaning, beautification, watering the house plants, keeping the wood stove lit, laundry, cooking, hosting guests, etc.

    • General Ranch Volunteer (Year-Round) – construction, animal care, cleaning and organizing, cutting firewood, fencing, occasional garden projects, and everything else under the sun that keeps us running smoothly year-round.

    • Cemetery Intern (Year-Round) – help prepare grave places, support burials, host tours and visits, and tend grave places

    We aim to have two volunteers at a time, and ask that folks stay at least a month. Volunteers will be directly supervised by Michelle Sager, our volunteer/conservation/garden coordinator – and volunteers will often work alongside other amazing staff members as well, depending on need and interest.

    Qualifications for a volunteer are:
    • Genuine interest in ranch life and sustainable living
    • The physical capacity to help in all types of weather and lift up to 50 lbs.
    • Ability to receive directions and work collaboratively, and also to work independently and be self-motivated to take initiative
    • Willingness to engage in non-violent communication practice as part of the team
    • Experience or education in permaculture, horticulture, farming, gardening, forestry, outdoor/environmental education, or community living is a bonus!

  • Languages spoken

    English: Fluent

  • Accommodation

    Accommodation

    Volunteers will be provided with either a room in the lodge or a trailer. There is also plenty of room to camp if that is preferred. We provide all basic food. During programs, meals are shared, but during the off-season most meals are cook-for-yourself. There are also 1,138 acres to explore!

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    We are located outside of Goldendale, WA – a small, rural town with a population of around 3,000 - a 2.5 hour drive from Portland, OR. We are on the eastern edge of the Columbia River Gorge, which has vast trails, rivers and waterfalls galore, and extremely interesting climate variations. It’s beautiful here!

    A note about the horses: we love to take our volunteers out on the trail when time and weather / ground conditions allow, but this may only be a couple times per month. Riding possibilities can be limited by conditions and program demands of the horses. But there are other ways to connect with horses that we may be able to facilitate as well.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • Space for parking camper vans

    Space for parking camper vans

    This host can provide space for campervans.

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    Two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    25 hours a week




Host ref number: 633332583585