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West Edmeston
All Year: May 2020-September 2020
Area (ha): 4.9
Persons: 1-10
Category: Organic Farmstay
Host ID: 37728
Region: Mid Atlantic

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Last Updated: November 26, 2019

*Accepting internship applications for May-September 2020.*

Unadilla Community Farm was founded in 2013 by a group of volunteers dedicated to the goals of the back-to-the-land movement. We are building an off-grid solar-powered homestead and education center following the principles of organic agriculture and permaculture design. We are situated on 12 acres of field and forest, alongside a growing Amish community in central New York State.

2020 is our 7th season welcoming interns. Our accredited internship program has attracted interns from North & South America, Africa, Asia, Europe, and New Zealand. Interns gain hands-on experience in no-till organic farming, regenerative agroforestry, permaculture, natural building, and food preservation. University students in the U.S. & Canada have earned course credits for our internship program (ask your advisor if you are eligible to earn credit too!).

Our internship is more than just a beginning farmer training program. It is an immersion into a rural, sustainable way of life. We are seeking interns interested in disconnecting from the mainstream, learning to support ourselves by growing our own organic produce, utilizing natural building methods to construct our barn and dwelling structures, making our own household products like soap and shampoo, reviving traditional agricultural and lifestyle practices, and living in community.

Our farm is organized and run cooperatively. We grow over 200 varieties of organic annual and perennial vegetables, mushrooms, herbs, and cold-hardy fruits, nuts, and berries. We run a hyper-local CSA program for families within a 25-mile radius, and also sell to natural food stores and restaurants in our area.

We are using natural building methods, as well as local and salvaged materials, to construct our farm’s infrastructure. Our completed projects include a skoolie (converted school bus), chicken tractor, high tunnel, and an off-grid tiny home with solar panels, rainwater collection, and wood-burning stove. We are in the process of completing a traditional New England timber framed barn on a rammed tire “Earthship” foundation.

*Interns volunteer for 5 hours/day, 5 days/week, and stay for a minimum of 1 month or more. In exchange for room and board, interns participate in organic farming (raising seedlings, transplanting, no-till bed prep, weeding, mulching, watering, harvesting), landscaping, natural building, food preservation (drying, canning, fermenting), seed saving, and firewood preparation.

*We offer free monthly classes, such as permaculture design, natural building, soap making, lotions and salves, compost building, foraging/wildcrafting, food preservation, natural fibers and dyes, and gourd craft.

*Sleeping accommodations include 2 single bedrooms in the barn loft, 2 double bedrooms in the skoolie (converted school bus), and 1 large tent on a platform. You are also welcome to pitch your own tent on various tent platforms and camp spots around the property.

*All organic gourmet vegetarian/vegan meals and unlimited snacks are provided, and typically eaten communally. No meat, alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs on the property.

*We have both indoor and outdoor kitchens, indoor and outdoor compost toilets, and a gravity-fed unheated shower. We use solar lanterns after dark, and have an off-grid solar panel system for charging cell phones. We use a high-quality, carbon filtration system (the Berkey) to filter rainwater and spring-fed creek water for drinking.

*Cell phone reception is excellent with Verizon. We don’t have wifi, but we take weekly trips to town to use the internet.

*At least once a month, we take interns on off-farm excursions, such as the Cooperstown Farmers’ Museum, historic Fly Creek Cider Mill, craft fairs, alpaca shearing, full moon parties, and young farmer meetings.

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