All Year: April to September
Area (ha): 4.5 hectares 10 acres
Persons: 2 to 3
Category: Organic Farmstay
Host ID: 38736
Region: Vancouver Island
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Last Updated: October 15, 2019
***WE CURRENTLY HAVE A LIVE/WORK/TRADE OPPORTUNITY AVAILABLE (as of October 15th, 2019). PLEASE READ THE FULL JOB DESCRIPTION ON OUR WEBSITE IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO APPLY. Please note: this is different than the regular helpX position below****
This magical, permaculture farm with amazing views of the Pacific Ocean Vancouver Island†is incredibly inspirational.†We enjoy our vegetable and herb gardens, goats, chickens, honey bees, livestock guardian dogs and many other wild creatures that visit us daily.†This history here is rich: this was the location of the Saanich Peninsula`s first schoolhouse and more recently is where NoŽl Richardson wrote her 4 famous cookbooks and contributed to CityFood Magazine for years while peering out over the spectacular gardens. Her husband, Andrew Yeomen, was also an author and amazing gardener. Together they created a very special place that at the time (1979 until 2014) required from them a significant leap of faith and subsequently plunged them into the world of organic farming. We (Brea, Todd and 2†children) couldn`t be more honoured to be the guardians of this land.†An adventure like theirs has been something that Brea has dreamed about since childhood, and for her the reality of living this dream is much sweeter then she could ever have imagined.
Brea and Todd are also owners of Pacific Rim College, a globally-recognized college of holistic medicine and sustainable living†located in downtown Victoria. Pacific Rim College provides†programs including Permaculture Design and Sustainable Ecosystems,†Holistic Nutrition, Western Herbal Medicine, Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine, and Holistic Doula Training. You can find out more on the Pacific Rim College website.
CURRENT AVAILABILITY: We are currently booked-up until June 5th, 2019 so please plan to come after that date.
FARMING/GARDENING ASSISTANT (see details below).† During the growing season we usually have 3 to 4 people doing this position. You must be happy to work in the hot summer sun (25C to 30C+) and/or during rainy, cool days (snow is unusual but not unheard of). Please see below for a detailed list of duties included in this position.†We are happy to have you stay for approximately 3 weeks 4 weeks†at a time. Longer or shorter stays may be possible, but please contact us about these.
FARMING/GARDENING POSITION: work will include the following, depending on the season and your timing of your stay with us:
- Tending to the herb and vegetable gardens (watering, weeding, planting, harvesting, etc.)
- Harvesting herbs, vegetables, fruits, and berries
- Seed collection
- Occasional care of goats/chickens/ducks/dogs
- Collecting manure and hay from goats/chickens for mulching garden beds.
- Small construction projects (only if you`re interested and some are available)
- Helping build healthy compost
- Trimming, weeding and maintaining gardens
- Working with fruit trees
- Preparing for events (school tours, weddings and other events)
- Building new garden beds
- ...and then you might want to find a magical place to relax and soak up the beautiful ocean, mountain and valley views!
WE NEED FROM YOU and WHAT WE WILL PROVIDE:
- We are looking for someone willing to work approximately 30-32 hours per week and who is physically capable to work in the gardens for hours at a time regardless of the weather. You will have 2 days off each week and they may or may not be†on weekends.
- We ask that you`re content†to work both independently and in small groups as each task requires different ways of working. We†have a Farm Manager who works 5 days a week here but occassionally you may work on days that she`s not here, so although you will have guidance, we need people that are also responsible and can carry †on with tasks †after they`ve been taught how to do them. On occasion you will be asked to work alone surrounded by stunning nature, but if this doesn`t appeal to you,†please don`t apply to come here.
- We enjoy friendly, health-conscious people who are happy keeping their home tidy and clean.
- We ask that you enjoy being around children as our children are often out on the farm and are very interested in meeting new people.
- We prefer to have people at Ravenhill that are excited to learn how to grow herbs and vegetables, and enjoy being around animals. If you do not enjoying eating healthy food, or being around animals, please don`t apply to come here. Also, if you have an extreme fear of dogs, you may not be comfortable here. Our dogs are gentle giants, but indeed, they are exceptionally large.
Please Note: We DO NOT ACCEPT SMOKERS (thank you for understanding) or people that are travelling with PETS of any size.
In exchange for your help we will provide the following:
- A super friendly place to be. We love meeting new people and we have lovely people that live here with us Ravenhill that you will also find very welcoming. We are extremely easy-going, and we hope that are too!
- Tent* (very large and spacious) -†each person will have their own tent unless they come here as a "couple". Summertime option only. Guests in a tent have their own beautiful private bathroom/shower nearby, a cozy foam matress, and all bedding is provided.
-†A wonderful 5th-wheel trailer* to call your home, complete with a full kitchen and bathroom. It actually sleeps 6 people so has plenty of room for 2 to 3 people to share. There is even a shower, toilet, and small kitchen for you to use. This is often not available from May through August, but may be on occasion.
-†Food for all 3 meals a day and gardens from which to harvest (Todd cooks almost all dinners for everyone here). We eat about 90% vegetarian, however, we do slaughter our roosters and hence, use chicken stock in some of our cooking. We also cook with our pastured eggs, goat milk, and cheese. ***Please take note in case you have any food restrictions or allergies, and if you are vegetarian just let us know :)***
- Laundry facilities
- Unlimited long-distance calling anywhere in Canada/US. And if you would like to purchase a phone card you are welcome to use our land-line for international calls.
- All utilities are included (hydro, gas, water, etc.)
- One bicycle for shared use
- Swimming pool (in the summer only)
- Pond to swim in
- Hundreds of books for you to enjoy!
- If you are travelling here by ferry, we will provide you with very specific bus directions and will pick-up you up from the nearby bus-stop.†If you are travelling here or away by plane (Victoria International Airport) the taxi is only about a 15-minute drive from here and fairly affordable.
About our location:
We are located in the stunning Mount Newton Valley on the Saanich Peninsula (yes, the ocean is on both sides of us and within walking or biking distance). We also have a provincial park behind us with many kilometres of trails and much wildlife to explore. The town of Saanichton is about 1600 metres away. From there you can easily bus into Victoria (35-40 minutes) or Sidney (20 minutes). Both places are fantastic and full of cafes, adorable shops and farmers markets. You can harvest food from our land and create your own wonderful dishes. Or you might want to spend a lazy afternoon basking in the sun with the goats,†chickens and ducks. The possibilities are endless. We are truly honoured to live in such an amazing place and we look forward to meeting you here!
In tending to the farm, we want to be stewards of sustainable and regenerative practices. We are dedicated to taking a holistic and "beyond organic" approach to every aspect of farm life - from growing produce and raising chickens, goats, and bees to living in a conscientious manner. We don`t use toxic chemicals/pesticides/herbicides of any type, as nature has created an incomparable symbiotic environment where the harmful effects of pests and fungi can be mitigated naturally. We try eat from the land as much as possible and enjoy a higher nutrient content in our food because of this.
We are dedicated to continuous learning and realize that although the learning curve will always be steep when it comes to nourishing our farm, it will also hold many wonderful surprises. We are so excited to be living this adventure and to be able share it with the community! We are loving every minute!
We do apologize, but we are often only able to respond to those applications that we can move forward with.
***Please note: For everyone`s safety, we will photocopy your photo ID upon arrival. Thank you.***