Help us breathe new life into a Renaissance chateau and its 36-hectare park in France!

  • Favourited 347 times
  • Last activity: 6 May 2024



 Min stay requested: at least 1 month



  • Description



    We are a gifted family of 4 and changed 4 years ago our lifes leaving Paris and taking over a huge and beautiful place in the French "campagne", le Château d'Argy.
    Our vision of the château is to build a place where people melt, interact, discover each other, and co-participate to make this vision possible. The final goal is to bring our small stone to enhace the creation of a new paradigm and we think that the beautifulness of this place, Non Violent Communication trainings, unschooled kids, nature, work achieved together and relationships can help this new world.

    Before moving to Berry in July 2019, we lived in Paris, Thomas managed an IT company, and Alexia, after working in audit and corporate finance, then as an actress, started as a trainer in NonViolent Communication (NVC or CNV in French) and therapist.

    Today we divide our time between family instruction, which at this stage consists of living with our daughters of 4 and 7 years old by playing, cooking, taking care of the animals and the estate, and our professional activities: Alexia animates NVC internships, many of them at the château, and Thomas manages the estate.
    The estate is made up of a 36-hectare park - with orchards, vegetable garden, pond -, the castle and its outbuildings, including the gite.
    Many animals live here: fallow deer, deer, peacocks, chickens, sheeps, horses, and cats, not to mention squirrels, nutria, and all the birds and the fishes ...

    Spring-summer is high season for us, we welcome groups almost every week.

    For the coming months ,we are looking for help:

    - to spend time with our daugthers (almost 4 and 7 years), and pass on to them what you like to do. Someone who is open to the unschooling process, to Non-Violent Communication: we are looking more for a spirit of support, rather than "childcare" strictly speaking ;-)

    - to help maintain the garden and the vegetable patch that has just been created
    The orchid is full of old trees that need to be trimmed and taken care of, and the vegetable garden, created last year by woofers, need also some upkeep.

    - in September and October : to collect and process apples (there are about 100 apple trees).

    We would be glad to welcome you if you want to stay at least one month, and speak either French or fluent English.

    In exchange, we offer a magnificent living environment and a friendly atmosphere, accommodation in the castle with meals to share together at noon, enriching human encounters.
    We offer a work schedule of 5 hours a day, 5 days a week.

    We can pick you up from the Buzancais station (36). If you have a car, even better so that you can enjoy the area easily! ;-)

    In our experience, we've had a wonderful time with workawayers that are :
    - reliable : do what you say you will do
    - autonomous : observe how things are done around you and take initiatives
    - energetic : active and outdoor person, who prefers achievment than watching a screen :)
    - conscientious : take care of objects, tools, tidy and clean the place after you worked in it
    - smiling and enthousiatic
    - smart and gifted
    - hardworking
    - curious and eager to discover new things.
    (I guess those words describe us as well)

    If that rings a bell for you, we're looking forward to welcoming you in le Château!

    Alexia and Thomas, along with Ludivine and Constance


    Nous sommes une famille de quatre zèbres, Thomas, Alexia, Ludivine et Constance.
    Avant de déménager dans le Berry en juillet 2019, nous vivions à Paris, Thomas gérait une entreprise d'informatique, et Alexia, après avoir travaillé dans l'audit et la finance d'entreprise, puis comme comédienne, était formatrice en Communication NonViolente (CNV) et thérapeute.

    Aujourd'hui nous partageons notre temps entre l'instruction en famille, qui consiste à ce stade à vivre avec nos filles de 4 et 7 ans ans en jouant, cuisinant, s'occupant des animaux et du domaine, et nos activités professionnelles : Alexia anime des stages de CNV, dont un bon nombre au château, et Thomas gère le domaine.
    Le domaine est constitué d'un parc de 36 hectares - avec vergers, potager, étang -, du château et de ses dépendances, dont le gîte.
    Beaucoup d'animaux vivent ici : des daims, des cerfs, des paons, des poules, des chevaux, des moutons et des chats, sans compter les écureuils, les ragondins, et tous les oiseaux...

    Le printemps-été est la haute saison pour nous, nous accueillons des groupes quasiment chaque semaine.

    Pour 2023, nous recherchons de l'aide :

    - pour passer du temps avec nos filles (4 et 7 ans) et leur transmettre ce que vous aimez faire. Quelqu’un qui soit ouvert à la démarche du unschooling, à la Communication Non Violente : nous cherchons davantage un esprit d’accompagnement, plutôt que de « garde d’enfants » à proprement parler ;-)

    - pour aider à l'entretien du jardin, des vieux vergers et du potager

    - pour aider au service des repas et à la préparation des chambres au gîte pendant les semaines de stage.

    Nous souhaiterions des séjours d’un mois minimum.

    En échange, nous offrons un magnifique cadre de vie et une ambiance conviviale, un logement au château avec des repas à partager ensemble le midi, des rencontres humaines enrichissantes.
    Nous proposons un rythme de travail de 5 heures par jour, 5 jours par semaine.

    Nous pouvons aller vous chercher à la gare de Buzançais (36). Si vous avez une voiture, c’est encore mieux pour que vous puissiez profiter de la région facilement ! ;-)

    Nous avons vécu de très bons moments avec les workawayers qui étaient :
    - fiables : faire ce qu'on dit, dire ce qu'on fait
    - autonomes : observer son environnement et prendre des initiatives
    - énergiques : préférer réaliser, accomplir des choses plutôt qu'être sur son écran
    - soigneux : prendre soin des objets, des jouets, des outils, les ranger et nettoyer son lieu de travail
    - souriant et enthousiaste
    - intelligent.e.s
    - d'apprendre et découvrir de nouvelles choses.
    Bien sûr ces mots nous décrivent assez bien aussi;-)

    Si ça vous parle, nous serons ravis de vous accueillir au château!

    Alexia et Thomas

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Help with Eco Projects
    DIY and building projects
    Farmstay help
    Babysitting and creative play
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Help around the house
    General Maintenance
  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    The main goal of our project is to build human interactions and create bonds (it's the NVC philosophy too :))

    I (Thomas) have spent a few years in the US and loved the opportunity I had there to meet people from all over the world. We want our new place to gather many people teaching and learning from each other.
    Our château is a major point of interest of the region and this already allows us to meet many interesting people. You'll be welcome to join us and take part in all our family and "professional" activities, another way to create connections.

  • Projects involving children

    Projects involving children

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

  • Help


    Here are few examples of what we'd like to help on and where your input would be very helpful:
    - spend time with our kids
    - dig in river beds
    - paint bathrooms
    - paint bedrooms
    - change gutter
    - cut wood
    - set up a wood-stove
    - plant trees
    - create a vegetable garden and then a forest garden

    We'd rather you stay for one month minimum to make sure you have time to discover the house, the garden, and of course get to know us and our daughters!

  • Languages spoken

    English: Fluent
    French: Fluent
    German: Intermediate

  • Accommodation


    Double bedrooms, either in the castle or in the gite, with private bathroom.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    There is a beautiful artificial lake 6 kilometers away, with a sand beach, where you will enjoy the freshness of water all summer long.

  • 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

    We have a lot of space (36 hectares) so you can easily park your campervan;-)

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    5 hours/day, 5 days/week maximum - 5 heures par jour, 5 jours par semaine

Host ref number: 989942275188

Feedback (6)



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Cultural exchange: (4.8)

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