Come and join us at a Permaculture Project, Animal Sanctuary and Pure Plant kitchen in Blenheim, New Zealand


New Zealand

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This listing is a Last minute host. They have let us know that they are looking for help immediately as well as at other times of the year.

 Min stay requested: at least 2 weeks

  • Description


    Kia Ora and Welcome!

    Please read through our description carefully before asking to volunteer with us :)

    We are a Permaculture project and animal sanctuary. We've been running for two years, so we are still quite young, and learning a lot as we go. We are building towards creating a learning centre for Permaculture courses and Pure-plant eating workshops.

    We practise vegan eating, so we don’t allow any meat or animal food products onto the property- there is also no smoking, drugs or alcohol allowed. In this way we encourage an escape and detox from mainstream culture.

    Our goal is to be a site which demonstrates Permaculture land use, Pure-plant eating, and care for animals (without using them for food products).

    Maia (German) began this project and has seen it through to where it is now. Currently she works more behind the scenes- so you may or may not meet her- and she also focusses more on her other projects which include essential oil healing, workshops on plant-based diets, and Hounds4Life greyhound re-homing.

    I, Danny (South African), started working here as the homestead manager in August 2017. I've been practising Permaculture for 7 years in different parts of the world. I work alongside the volunteers when time allows it, although honestly, I'm often busy with management responsibilities and planning our intro courses. I'm always willing to share any of the Permaculture knowledge I've come across, and am always eager to hear new ideas and get input from volunteers passing through.I generally join volunteers for breakfast and lunch, but dinner is shared between volunteers alone. My partner Nina and my baby daughter Rokia may join in too from time to time.

    Permanent Volunteers
    Alex and Shannah both live on site. Alex manages the animal sanctuary, while Shannah manages the Hounds4Life programme alongside Maia.


    We really enjoy volunteers who are keen to learn and practise Permaculture and/or related practises. If you are hoping to learn during your stay with us, I would recommend staying longer than a month, as Permaculture is a slow process, full of small slow solutions.

    Lead Volunteer: We try to always have one volunteer who stays for three months or more. This volunteer works closely with me, helps manage the project and coordinates the volunteers. We have had some great lead volunteers pass through and contribute greatly to the project, and honestly couldn't do it without them! Thank you Josh and Mira, Hadar, Sienna, Claire, Hunter, Anais, Thais, Idriss, Karin, Pauline, Will, Dana, Alice, Amy, Alex and Melissa.

    Short-term Permaculture Volunteers: Of course we couldn't do it without you! We take four short-termers at a time. Our short-termers stay for a minimum of two weeks, BUT we REALLY prefer month-long stays, even for short-termers! We don't need to know too much about you before we book you a place, so don't write us your life story - we'd rather learn it when we meet you in person :)

    Animal Sanctuary Volunteer: Ideally this position is for a long-term volunteer (1 month minimum). This volunteers primary tasks will be orientated around caring for the animals and helping maintain and develop their homes. They will be guided mostly by Alex and Shannah with regards to their tasks, but also by Danny. Some of their work may not be with the animal sanctuary, but with the rest of the volunteers instead.

    If you're keen to join us as a short-termer, please help us spend less time on the computer and more time in the garden, by sticking to our enquiry format below (we ask all volunteers to arrive on a Monday morning and leave on a Friday or Saturday):


    I… (one sentence).
    I would like to arrive on Monday the _______ and leave on Friday the __________

    (your preferred name/s)


    We are always looking for volunteers who are willing to stay with us for three months or more. This volunteer becomes a collaborator in running the project during their stay. They will receive all training necessary to take on the role. They will help oversee most of the day-to-day tasks; such as coordinating the volunteers, caring for the food gardens and managing the kitchen. This is a great learning opportunity for someone who is hoping to have a project of their own one day - or someone who wants to practise their hand in the garden, the kitchen or the toolshed. Ideally the candidate has some experience or knowledge in Permaculture - having completed a PDC would be beneficial but not crucial. Any people skills, garden skills, carpentry/ DIY skills, or cooking skills would come in handy for this role too :) . On the other hand, if you have none of these skills - a positive attitude, an eagerness to learn and a willingness to do is really all you will need!

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    DIY and building projects
    General Maintenance
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Farmstay help
    Help with Eco Projects
    Help around the house
    Animal Care

  • Projects involving children

    Projects involving children

    This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.

  • 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

    We ourselves are travelers and have moved to New Zealand from South Africa. We love to learn from different people and cultures, to exchange new ideas, and to work alongside people with different knowledge and skill-sets. We happily share and exchange the knowledge that we have about pure-plant food and about permaculture.

  • Help


    We are only 2 years old and are in the transition phase to becoming a site guided by principles of Permaculture.
    As we are very young, we are not a living example yet but are working hard towards it.

    What kind of help do we require?

    Permaculture Volunteers:
    Cleaning, weeding, composting, cutting grass, planting and harvesting, digging, repairs and maintenance, fencing, sometimes new projects and basic wood-work.

    Animal Sanctuary Volunteer:
    Feeding and watering animals, walking and exercising the animals, general animal care/ medications etc., maintaining and shifting fences, some basic building/fixing and maintenance.

    On some days we may visit other projects and help out there. The work will be similar.

    If you are here during a Permaculture workshop, short-termers are welcome to either help coordinate and cook on the day and participate in between, or pay to join and be a full participant. Long-termers are invited to join the course for free as a participant.

  • Languages spoken

    Afrikaans: Fluent
    English: Fluent
    Spanish: Beginner

  • Accommodation


    The short term volunteers have a sleep-out facing sunny North with 2 bunk beds that accommodates 4 people from Monday to Friday. A long-term volunteer has a separate single bedroom close by. You'll have shared use of the kitchen, bathroom, laundry, lounge and deck. Please note that we use compost toilets, and a sun-heated shower (only warm when the sun shines) - BUT will be building a fire-heated shower for winter.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    We are situated in a beautiful area with easy access to the Marlborough Sounds for outdoor activities, and 10 mins away from the ferry that crosses from Picton to Wellington.

  • 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

  • Can host digital nomads

    Can host digital nomads

    This host has indicated that they love having digital nomads stay.

  • Space for parking camper vans

    Space for parking camper vans

    This host can provide space for campervans.

  • Can possibly accept pets

    Can possibly accept pets

    This host has said they are willing to accept those travelling with a pet.

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    Monday- Friday: 5 hours per day. Lead volunteer hours will vary. Weekends = 2 hours per night accommodation (if you choose to stay here), and you will be asked to provide your own food.

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Accuracy of profile: (4.0)

Cultural exchange: (5.0)

Communication: (4.0)

Host ref number: 811534652862