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We are a family of three consisting of Mieke and her mother Ina, both from The Netherlands, and Miekes husband Alan who is Irish. Ina has a small apartment connected to our house, she eats with us in the evenings and spends time both in her own place and in the main house. Ina has now fractured a vertebra, is quite poorly and needs a lot of care.
Mieke travels quite a bit for work, so she is often away, Alan works part-time and is mostly at home.
We live in East Clare, close to the beautiful, lakeside village of Mountshannon. We have wonderful countryside around us, with rolling hills, forests and of course the lake. It is not easy to get to a city, there are hardly any bus connections to Limerick and Ennis and which are about 45 minutes by car.
We do have a very good community around us, with a lot of family and friends.
We have two dogs - Florian and Diego, two cats - Mimsy and Charlie and a few chickens. We also have a big garden with a tunnel, a vegetable patch and some fruit trees.
Cooking / shopping
Help in the house
You will find a warm welcome with us and hope you will be a part of our family and community during your stay. We live very rurally, but our house is not often empty :)
Alan loves entertaining - he plays the guitar - sometimes in a band, he loves games and storytelling.
One of our previous work away volunteers also lives on our land in a mobile home, as she wants to create a living here in Ireland.
The main reason we are currently looking for a volunteer is to ensure that we can still have Ina at home with us.
Your main task would be to help us looking after Ina. It is important that you like caring and being with a sweet elderly person. Now that she has fractured her vertebra, she needs quite a bit of care, and you would be helping us with this.
other tasks could be:
=> walk and feed the dogs - when/if ina improves you might do this together with her.
=> spend some time with Ina - It would be nice to have breakfast with her, sit with her watching some TV or just to have a chat.
=> Cooking dinner when Mieke isn't home
=> Clean the house and Ina´s room once or twice a week
=> Help Alan around the place with small outdoor projects and gardening jobs.
Where helping us caring for Ina would be the main task, we like to discover together with you what other tasks would be most suited to you... each volunteer has been a very different experience for us, as there is a lot of freedom in designing your own "job" within the general needs we have. If you are willing to learn new skills that would be perfect!
Ina's English is not so good anymore, so even though we are an English speaking household, it would be beneficial if you could speak/understand dutch or flemish but not essential.
We would like a minimum stay of a month so you could really experience our daily life and connect with Ina.
We prefer to have Skype contact before you arrive to get to know each other a bit better.
English, Dutch, German
You will have your own small double room in the house and we share the bathroom.
Mountshannon is beautifully situated on the shores of Lough Derg in County Clare looking out to Holy Island - that has the ruins of an 9th century monastic settlement. Further away, there is the wonderful West Coast of Ireland with its beaches and The Cliffs of Moher.
we live in a walkers paradise with plenty of hiking and walking ways all around us. The cities of Ennis, Limerick and Galway are around 45 minutes to 1 hour by car. We are happy to show you the surroundings or bring you to the bus stop so you can travel a bit by yourself.
You will be part of our family so you are welcome to join us when we go to the pub, a party, a movie night or other activities if you like!
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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