Ecological Hobby Farm in the rolling hills of Northumberland County, Ontario, Canada

  • Favourited 26 times
  • Last activity: 4 Jul 2024

Availability

  2024 

 Min stay requested: at least 2 weeks

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Details

  • Description

    Description

    Tony and Linda are a young senior couple who have spent the last 10 years working and loving the land, growing and raising much of our food using organic and permaculture principles learned through our earlier travels around the world. We moved our family from Toronto to the country in 2014 to live a more peaceful and fulfilling lifestyle, closing the gap between field and table. We had Workawayers for six years, helping us to get our farm up and running. Then we took a break as we no longer needed the extra labour. We are now moving into another phase of life. Our kids are grown up and off on their own adventures. We've sold a portion of our property to our tenant vegetable farmers. And we've reduced our farming and agri-tourism ventures so that we could do more traveling and visits with our far-flung family.

    Our 80 acre property is a mixture of field, forest, meadow and wetland with a beautiful view of Lake Ontario. We have a large "kitchen" vegetable garden which is run as a community cooperative. We also raise goats, chickens, and bees, one horse, 3 dogs and 2 cats. And Tony bakes and sells his famous "Montreal-style" bagels. Our farm has a communal atmosphere with our near neighbours getting together one night a week for dinner and our garden volunteers meeting three mornings a week. We host groups for tours, cooking classes and foraging walks. And we also share our property with a forest school and a wilderness therapy program for autistic children.

    We have recently added a new barn to house our animals, a new garage and workshop, and a self-sufficient 2-bedroom apartment above our garage. Now that our building projects are complete, we want to focus on cleaning up the remnants of years of accumulated construction materials and old farm equipment and beautify the property. We have many unfinished projects and others that haven't been started. But we need help!

    When we traveled, we loved working as volunteers side by side with people from all over the world. Now that we are hosts we can relive our experiences all over again! We like to gather together for some of our meals to cook, share stories and ideas and get to know one another. We hope that our volunteers leave us fit and happy and passionate about growing and eating good food!

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Help with Eco Projects
    Gardening
    DIY and building projects
    Animal Care
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    General Maintenance
  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    We work together as a respecful community in this peaceful and beautiful part of the world and do our best to model the tolerance and diversity which Canada is known for. We also love to show off southern Ontario's forests and lakes when we can as well as our sophisticated cities. We are happy to assist workers with planning trips away from the farm.

  • Help

    Help

    Farm work is very physical work and requires strength and stamina in all kinds of weather. Weather in Canada is extreme. The spring can be cool and wet during the day and cold during the night. The summers are mainly hot, dry and very humid. Black flies and mosquitoes are bothersome in the spring and during sundown but our property is breezy so the bugs aren't too bad. You will need to be reasonably fit for digging, carrying heavy loads, weeding, throwing hay bales, carrying water, mucking stalls, cutting wood and building fences. You will be around livestock that can be intimidating and dangerous if not treated knowledgeably and with respect.

    Construction never ends here. We are always looking for help with ongoing maintenance and repairs. Some of our projects this year include constructing split-rail fences, helping build a deck, fixing up the garage and workshop area, clearing away old lumber and construction materials. We are also cutting trails through our forest and doing some landscaping around our straw-bale home.

    The working day starts at 9:00 and ends at 2:00. Workawayers work Monday to Friday, 5 hours a day, 25 hours a week. Days off are negotiable. You will stay in a 2 bedroom apartment above the garage and use the small kitchen for breakfast and lunch and the occasional dinner. All groceries will be provided including farm-fresh veggies, eggs, herbs and honey, plus chicken and goat meat. Many dinners will be with the hosts in the main house. After work volunteers tend to go hiking, running, cycling, swimming at the beach, playing games, journaling, drawing and playing music. On your days off we can help you plan trips to see what Ontario has to offer and help you book activities and transportation. We encourage a healthy lifestyle. Smoking cigarettes or drinking to excess is discouraged.

  • Languages spoken

    English: Fluent

  • Accommodation

    Accommodation

    2 bedroom apartment with kitchen and bathroom with shower.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    We are a 15 minute drive or a 40 minute bike ride to some great restaurants, shops, a lovely swimming beach. Train and bus transportation is quite close and Toronto is just over an hour away. Our beautiful lake-filled cottage country, just north of us, is a favourite destination.

  • 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: 828268561396

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