We are a family farm located in York, Western Australia. The family consists of Guy and Joanne, and four adult children, Liam (30), Elise (28), Declan (26) and Hannah (22). Declan, Liam and Hannah live in Perth, and Elise lives in Wagga Wagga, New South Wales.
Our main business is breeding sheep. We have about 950 breeding ewes and we sell about 350 rams each year to farmers. All our animals are pedigree recorded and we collect a lot of performance data on them. This involves a lot of hands on farm work as well as computer data management.
While Guy loves the sheep work, Joanne enjoys gardening, and we have a large garden. We have a vegetable garden, but not during the summer months. Both require a lot of attention in summer and autumn, as we don't get any rain at this time and it is very hot.
Our family have hosted lots of travellers over the years, and we really enjoy having people from overseas visiting and staying with us. In 2013, Elise travelled in Europe for 9 months, and participated as a workawayer herself. She stayed with several hosts in England and Ireland, mostly on farms, and really enjoyed all her experiences. This experience encouraged us to join the program, and we have loved meeting all the workawayers who have chosen to visit us.
Cooking / shopping
Help in the house
We love meeting people from overseas and other cultures, and have enjoyed the experience of cultural exchange for many years. We enjoy travelling overseas very much, and have visited people from other countries who have spent time on our farm.
Several workawayers have returned here to Mount Ronan, and we feel like they are very much a part of our family.
We really enjoy learning about other cultures, and the life experiences of our visitors.
There will be a variety of jobs that we need help with, both on the farm and in the house/garden.
On the farm, the busiest time of the year is lambing (July-September), because we have to catch all the lambs on the day of their birth to tag them, weigh them and identify them to their mothers. In summer, the main farm tasks are checking sheep and supplementary feeding grain to the sheep.
During autumn, we prepare some paddocks for seeding of pastures and crops. We will be picking rocks and chainsawing fallen tree branches away from fencelines.
There is always something to help with in the yard and garden, watering plants, raking leaves etc. Sometimes we also have painting jobs that need doing. One big task which we would like to complete this year is renovating a shed to move our sheep shearing facility into. Any workawayer with building and welding skills would be very welcome.
Workawayers will live in the main house with the family. We are all non-smokers, so would prefer non-smoking guests.
You will have your own bedroom, and share a bathroom with whichever children are home at the time.
Meals will be eaten together as a family, however you can buy and cook your own food if you wish. We are not vegetarian, but can adjust to feed people who are :)
We have limited wifi, but we do have internet connection.
We live on a farm, 25km from the nearest town. Our town, York, is quite small and has basic services (supermarket, post office, bakery and pubs and cafes). Perth is the nearest city, which is 80km drive away. York is a very historic town, in fact it is the oldest inland town in Western Australia. It is popular with tourists, and has various attractions including music festivals, skydiving, art and furniture galleries, and an old motor museum.
Buses from Perth go to York town, and there is also a train service from Perth to Northam, which is 30 minutes drive away. However, services may not be too regular. We are happy to pick up workawayers from the train station in Midland, which is on the outskirts of Perth.
Due to our relative isolation, it would be great for workawayers if they have a car, so they don't feel stranded here and can go on day trips if they want to. However, having a car is not essential.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families