Hello, we are Henk and Heather, a married couple who own and run a 140 acre mixed Certified Organic Farm in Frankville, Ontario. We have been farming for about 10 years, but both of us have farming backgrounds. Henk quit his job 4 years ago so we could devote all of our time and energy to our farm. We raise beef, goats, Jersey cows, have laying hens and make our own maple syrup. I make cheese, yogurt, and kefir from our own milk. We also have two large gardens. We are vendors at a market in Ottawa and go there twice a month. We would welcome help with the farm chores, feeding, watering, looking after baby goats, fencing, building projects, stacking wood, cooking, planting, weeding and watering the gardens, canning and preserving, lawn mowing (ride on mower) and helping prepare for market deliveries. We have three children, (20, 22 and 24 ) all out on their own now, but will visit often and sometimes help and stay for dinner. Our youngest will be staying with us for the summer. My elderly mom also lives with us.
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help around the house
Help with Computers/ Internet
You will learn what is involved in running an organic farm, animal husbandry, gardening, canning, preserving, work on the English language, preparing and delivering to a market, some knowledge with mechanical repairs (tractors and implements) and fencing.
We love the simple things and enjoy the fresh air, country life and the delicious food our farm produces. We don’t stay up late and are usually on the go by 7:30am. A typical work day would involve farm chores, which usually take us about 2 hours, but with help likely 1 - 1 1/2 hrs. We come in for a hearty breakfast, usually eggs, sausages, pancakes, homemake yogurt, or kefir. And coffee of course :) Then we plan our day, which could include any of the above activities. We usually work all day til chore time in the evening, but you will not be required to help that long. 5 hour days would be normal, and if you could be flexible that would be appreciated. Some days may be longer but would be offset by shorter days.
We make our own hay, so if you happen to be here when that is happening, then you would be welcome to help stack the hay on the wagon, and unload it into the barn. If we make a grain pick up, then unloading the grain into containers in the barn is a common task as well.
If cooking is your passion, we would be thrilled to have you do the cooking/clean up and help with the gardening. We want to be as flexible as possible and have you enjoy your stay and feel like you accomplished something and learned at the same time.
We are just as interested in learning from you as you are from us! We don't get a chance to travel, so having people from other countries and cultures come to us is a wonderful opportunity to meet people and learn ourselves. We know there are always better ways to do things, so are eager to meet people with innovative ideas to make our days more streamlined. Sometimes a fresh pair of eyes and new ideas can go a lot way! We welcome your input.
We are a fun-loving family and always try to make the most of each day. We both have a great sense of humour and are easy to get along with. We do work hard though, and are looking for someone who likes to have fun, laugh, be willing to work hard and be easy going and diligent with tasks and jobs. The help required isn't always physically difficult, but sometimes just slow and steady. The ability to work without constant supervision is a necessity. Please no drugs or drama.
Priority will be given to those with farming or agricultural experience. Good conversational English is a requirement.
Accommodations will be in our home, we have one fully furnished bedroom, (the other our daughter will be using from May-end of August. After that time there will be 2 bedrooms available for September and October.) in our finished basement (cool in summer) and one on the main floor. We have central air conditioning, and if it is really hot and humid, will have it running. There are two bathrooms, one shower. There is unlimited internet access and cable TV, but these are not a big part of our day. When working, we ask that your phone be put away. Meals are homemade, we usually eat a big breakfast, snack in the afternoon and a big supper. If you love to cook, we would welcome your culinary skills. Help with clean-up and dishes is mandatory. You are welcome to eat your meals with us and to help yourself to any food in the kitchen. For the months of May-August we can accommodate one couple or a single person. For September and October we can accommodate two singles or two couples or a combination of the above.
On your free time you are welcome to go for walks in our bush, swim in the lake just down the road, and we hope you will also enjoy the attractions surrounding our area. We are an hour southwest of Ottawa and an hour east of Kingston. The beautiful St. Lawrence River with the Thousand Islands is a short 30 minute drive into Brockville, which has many tourist attractions as well - boat cruises, the Aquatarium, beaches, and many Historical sites in the area. We will have a bicycle available, and if we have time can give you a ride to Brockville, where there are buses available for transportation, and a lot of things are within walking distance in the city. We usually make a trip to town 1-2 times/week. Closest airport is Ottawa, and there is a bus station in Brockville. We are a very busy farm and may not have time to do touristy things with you, so please be aware of that.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week