All Year: Yes
Area (ha): Many
Category: Organic Farmstay
Host ID: 32162
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Last Updated: November 14, 2017
Richard Glyn Foundation - Gaunt's House
Set in acres of beautiful land with a Georgian/ Edwardian period house built in the 18th Century by Sir Richard Glyn. The Foundation (a charity) was set up to offer opportunities for profound learning and seeks to instil values of community, honesty and openness.
We host national and international groups that facilitate learning in a range of personal and spiritual development subjects such as yoga, meditation, gongs/drumming, Zen meditation.
Based on a small country estate, we have a Victorian walled garden, which is being developed over time into an oasis of food production and a wildlife haven. We have inherited a much neglected garden and a lot of the work this year is in restoration, as well as trying to build new areas and grow new things in a more natural, sustainable and friendly manner - including permaculture concepts.
We consider this to be a long term and exciting project. We have spent much of the time improving the soil and growing using permaculture/natural principles. There is always something to do!
We love having creative people here design signs/posters/art and to help others to carry on learning and thinking.
We grow many vegetables, herbs and flowers using organic gardening techniques. If you have gardening/ permaculture experience, these are very welcome and will be embraced.
We are also in the process of building a roundhouse and would particularly welcome applications from people with carpentry/eco-building skills.
We love to host enthusiastic, hard working volunteers that have a keen interest in growing food or just growing in themselves.
There are expanses of woodland, river and meadows to spend free time, and opportunities to go into the local town and further south to Bournemouth, which is a thriving student town.
On the wider estate there is a Victorian period farm (Honeybrook) which is an education facility for children. There is also have a dairy farm and applicants with an interest and skills may occasionally help out here.
Wwoofer/residential volunteers are expected to commit to stay for a minimum of one month and in return are given accommodation and food.
Our meals are all vegetarian and a vegan diet can be catered for. You will normally work for 30 hours a week, including up to 5 hours a week contributing to general domestic chores in the house. Work is generally either in the house or the garden and we like, where possible, to give people choices.
Work hours are generally from 8am-1pm each day, with lunch at 1pm and days off are agreed in negotiation with key staff. You will receive support from a designated staff member and encouragement to pursue your own developmental needs. Each month (or weekly, if your stay is for the minimum of one month) your place at Gauntís House will be reviewed and approval given to continue should you so wish.
If you stay with us for a while, there are potential opportunities to expand your skills and become a House Fellow.
We also welcome local non-resident volunteers who offer as much or little time as they wish.
It is suggested that you bring warm, comfortable clothes and footwear suitable for outdoor gardening work as well as leisure clothing. Gardening gloves and equipment are provided.
As a resident volunteer you will be allocated a small, basic single room with shared bathroom, in one of our converted outbuildings for the duration of your stay. You will be responsible for this during the time you are here and we request that itís left in the condition in which you find it.
House Fellows: Do you wish to be part of the house, have maintenance or restaurant / waitressing experience and love taking care of guests? Wwoofers and volunteers who have settled well and would like to develop further could be offered House Fellow positions, where a small stipend is paid and additional responsibilities are allocated in terms of house maintenance or caring for our guests. You would be helping with looking after the House and/or welcoming guests, working in the pantry and generally helping out. You may be asked to work evenings and weekends, if needed, but would then have two weekdays off.
Our values are based on the Richard Glyn Foundation Charter 1989 and below are some relevant excerpts.
ĎTo provide an environment for personal development, education, information and training, refreshment, rejuvenation and joy; where like-minded people may come together to share their vision, knowledge, talents, skills and wisdom to evolve more perfect lives individually and together towards a more perfect universal community.
The environment will encourage an awareness of, and a striving towards, that personal and all-embracing, spiritual peace, light, love, energy and bliss in and from which all truth, meaning, creation and beauty exist and flow. In this essence of life and growth are found the understandings and freedom which all people seek; and from this essence springs fulfilment, harmony, balance, content and happiness, eternally and for all.
The environment will be so created as to encourage a tacit, social sensitivity, where each person is welcome free of prejudice; where individuals and families are conspicuously associated by a sense of awareness, caring and concern, rather than by any contemporary, social yardstick, wealth, creed, nationality or background. No single religion, philosophy, party-political cant nor dogma of any kind will be adopted by the community. English shall be the first language; communication, mutual understanding shall be the first endeavour.
The environment will enjoy an open, calm, joyful, healthy and secure atmosphere such that visitors may feel inspired to seek their inner self and their own path to follow; may come to realise soul in its unity and infinity and the shades of ego and its illusions; may gain an understanding of God universal and within; may seek to perceive the true self in their fellows and in all things, the better to evolve and communicate, to give and to receive, generally and particularly; where each may grow in certainty and confidence, better able to transcend the challenges and vicissitudes of life; to live and rejoice in that stream of brilliance, vital energy and bliss that we know as love.
The environment will be aesthetically pleasing and comfortable. Buildings, gardens, grounds and facilities will be well maintained. New buildings and improvements will be light, unobtrusive and well designed and will blend with the existing buildings and surroundings.
There will be no single spiritual, nor academic authoritative figure; though people may volunteer or be selected to represent, from time to time, any aspect of life, philosophy, arts, creativity, academia or administration. The ever-evolving Gaunts House community will meet together, as like-minded people, to organise and to run the life of the community as they deem appropriate within these aims. The community meetings will ensure that the spirit of these aims is maintained in everyday life; that whatever facilities and opportunities are needed are provided, as they become possible.í
RGF Charter, 1989
We hope that you will find that your time with us provides a rich and valuable experience and look forward to hearing from you.