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SADLY THE VISAS OF OUR TWO WONDERFUL WORKAWAYERS, WITIH WHOM WE HAVE HAD THE GOOD FORTUNE TO SHARE LOCKDOWN, EXPORE AT THE BEGINNING OF SEPTEMBER AND THEY MUST LEAVE THE UK. WHILST WE CANNOT REPLACE THEM WE ARE LOOKING FOR ONE OR TWO VOLUNTEERS TO FOLLOW IN THEIR FOOTSTEPS AND BUILD ON THE GOOD WORK THAT THEY AND THEIR PREDECESSORS HAVE COMPLETED.
We are a married couple who have shared our home and our lives with young people aged 17 to 62 from overseas for the last 30 years. The property is older and we need help with general maintenance and some construction work. We also have a garden which we are constantly redesigning to provide an interesting and artistic space from which to enjoy our rural views and fill our kitchen with fresh herbs and other produce. We are very busy with our big family of dogs so we need help and lots of ideas to keep improving the home and garden. We have a lot of friendly, family dogs and breed litters from time to time, the care of our dogs and running a dog training business takes up most of our time so the day to day care, general maintenance of and improvements to, our property (which is not very large - ⅓ acre) needs helping hands. We are committed to recycling, reducing waste and to trying to use natural products wherever practical. We very much appreciate when our Workawayers cook for the family as we run evening dog training classes several times a week. We have hosted many vegetarians over the years and also a few vegans and that is not a problem provided they don't expect expensive "premium" foods, they are welcome to prepare their own dishes if our main meal contains foods they do not eat but they must be willing to prepare meals for non vegetarians. We do not accept smokers. We have very good high speed internet, we usually spend some evenings each week playing word games such as Bananagrams or Pool and enjoy far ranging conversations over dinner. Our environment is very busy most of the time and because we are a very busy household with 6 people usually living here and many visitors and volunteers coming and going, enthusiasm and a strong community and work ethic are essential. We often have several people from different part of the world, living here anyone so who lives with us must be happy to join our big diverse family and work as part of a cohesive team. Volunteers need to be strong and fit, have common sense and come with a good work ethic, not be too needy and we cannot accommodate lazy or precious people.
Our home is a great place to practise and improve English conversation, Workawayers who will benefit most are those who have a reasonable knowledge of school/college English and wish to improve their usage through conversation.
Help with Eco project
We are a very busy household with permanent staff as well as Workaways and regular visits from our past helpers who live overseas from Europe to Australia, our home is something of a cultural melting pot.
We are about 20 minutes by car from Basingstoke which is 45 minutes by fast train from Central London (Waterloo), 20 minutes by car from the ancient city of Winchester and 40 minutes by car from Southampton, we drive to London every few weeks for a day out so can sometimes give a ride to the city. We have enjoyed the live-in company of overseas visitors for over 30 years and many have become life-long friends, we like to share our culture and learn about the culture of others in a family environment with a lot of good humour and discussion. Workawayers are welcome to join in our dog training and dog agility classes as, when and if they wish to do so and will share family life with us and our other live-in helpers. We have a couple of local pups within walking distance. We enjoy hearing about traveller's lives and experiences and sharing cultural aspects of each others lives. We are keen to help and encourage our overseas friends to learn English, if they wish, our volunteers are very welcome to prepare short talks in English for us to and help them to polish their skills.
Practical Help wanted in late August/early September 2020
At the moment we need help with lots jobs making artefacts, that we use in our family garden, general maintenance, weeding and helping to take care of our developing fruit and vegetable garden and new greenhouses. We are particularly looking for volunteers with basic construction skills as we need to build new cold-frames and bespoke shed/workshop before the Autumn. We salvage and repurpose old materials to make new artefacts, woodwork, brickwork, stone etc.. so Volunteers need to be physically strong, willing and please, - no shirkers! Volunteers must be competent and confident using power tools and understand the need for health safety. We need physically strong people as occasionally some of the work requires a degree of heavy lifting. There maybe decorating for wet very days, and other ad hoc projects as well as some help with the daily routine. We also need help, cleaning outside each day and (very occasionally) inside as well as helping with walking the dogs (in all weather). The dogs love to be fussed and we will also have puppies who enjoy lots of human contact and cuddles. We have no kennels, all the dogs live with us in the home as part of the family so anyone living with our family must love dogs and enjoy close daily contact with them. All work associated with volunteers is related to our family pets and our own family home and garden and is not a part of our business activities. We appreciate occasional help with cooking but DO NOT NEED HELP WITH SHOPPING, HOUSEWORK OR CHILDCARE.
Own room (or shared if a couple) in one of our charming chalets beside the house. Chalets are heated, cosy and well equipped with internet access, USB ports and plenty of storage, please note that the chalets are quite small so if you are a couple you won't have a lot of extra room. Washing & lavatory facilities are in the house which is 2m away. We eat together as a family each evening and share "family" time together talking, playing cards, word games, pool, snooker or billards. We have high speed internet access, wifi and an "Open Use" iMac computer. Food is provided and cooking is shared so that our workawayers cook for us all usually once a week. We have a good fitness room with various machines for those who want to get super-fit although the area where we live is great for walking, running and cycling. Lots of dogs share the main part of the house so our home is only suitable for true dog lovers. We are very environmentally aware and try to keep a low environmental profile so like minded souls are a particular pleasure. We cannot accommodate smokers.
Local public transport is mediocre but we can sometimes help drop off and pick up from the nearest large town (Basingstoke) which has a good shopping centre, leisure centres, ice skating, cinemas, go carting, sky diving, bowling and fast trains to London (45 minutes). We are in a rural location with an extensive network of footpaths, the area is very popular with on-road and cross country cyclists as well as runners and hikers. Our nearest town is smaller and within easy cycling distance and reasonable walking distance, it offers a more limited range of activities but has a good leisure centre. We are quite close Jane Austin's house at Chawton, Gilbert White's House at Selbourne and the historic Cities of Winchester and Southampton, our local railway station, which is within walking distance, is on the Watercress Line which operates steam trains.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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