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All Year: Yes
Area (ha): 21
Persons: 2 to 4
Category: Other
Host ID: 84735
Country: Panama

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Last Updated: October 5, 2019

This is a learning laboratory in creating community, building green businesses, innovating solutions for sustainable living, and sharing these innovations and learnings with the local community. In addition to creating our living spaces and the requisite water catchments, garden plots, chickens and other small animal areas, and food forests, we envision implementing initiatives such as shared workspaces for artisans and craftspeople, shared storefronts, local products, produce, crafts markets to strengthen local economies, and an eco-business incubator. All of this will be documented so that it can be improved upon and replicated and all of this has a huge social impact.

Our EcoVillage Project has available several opportunities for long-term (preferably 3+ month, but we'll consider 1-2 months) volunteers. The learning potential here is enormous, as we are building an intentional community from scratch!

This is an EcoVillage in formation. Our center of operations is at Casa Ubuntu - our shared living and working space, which is open to travelers and digital nomads as one of our means of support. In addition, we have our Finca, 21ha of land in its natural state – a mix of rolling grasslands, highly eroded areas and forested gullies, escarpments and galleries along the river and stream. In the past year we built an access bridge, planted a 1/2Ha food forest garden, established a couple of swales, and built the Rainbow Bunkhouse in our pioneer camp area with dry compost toilet, rainwater capture for shower and sinks. We're working on dams & other water catchment systems and will shortly be building an outdoor kitchen. Casa Ubuntu is in the town of Antón, Panama and the Finca is about 30 minutes away by car.

For the technology positions (see below), we hope that you're eco-conscious and interested in Permaculture. We also hope that if you're here while we're running a Permaculture course you'll participate in it. For the Finca Projects prior experience designing Permaculture interventions in one or more of our areas of need is extremely helpful, and preferably also interest in participating in a PDC while you're here (we tend to hold them quarterly). These courses are quite affordable and when there are several people here studying, we hold live discussion groups and practical hands-on exercises to complement the online curriculum.

In addition to the key needs which require long-term commitments, there are some smaller projects & a special project listed below.

KEY NEEDS -- preferably a 3+ month commitment (1 month minimum):

*?Technology: Website, Positioning, Marketing*? (Max 2 positions)
These positions are housed at the Guest House and require knowledge and experience in Word Press website design and maintenance, SEO, digital/online marketing including social media outlets such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter (and other emerging outlets). Tasks include updating and improving the website, improving and implementing marketing plans, creating/editing content, interacting on social media platforms to increase engagement and followers, troubleshooting technology issues. Ideally also includes taking photographs and videos, and administrative support (e.g., replying to emails, replying and creating engagements on social media platforms).
3-5 hrs per day – 5 days/week – live at the guest house. Number of hours and meals to be agreed together with scope of work.

*?Finca Projects; food forest gardens, water systems, power systems*? (Max 4 positions)
We need to tend the existing food forest, work on water systems and start to look at options for generating electricity at our Rainbow camp. We’re also planning some structures like a ‘rancho’ or ‘gazebo’ type shelter for meetings and training events, swales, dams made of recycled materials, clay, rocks, etc. with spillways, ponds and irrigation channels. We also need detailed topographical maps showing contours, vegetation, paths/trails and roads, and other features of note such as streams, springs (if any), gullies/run-off ditches, changes in elevation, etc. We expect that those working at the finca will each take primary responsibility for one area and will collaborate with one another as needed. The four main areas we see at the moment are mapping (so we can develop a comprehensive site plan), water systems/swales, etc, buildings, and electricity.

3-5 hrs per day, 5 days/week. Number of hours and meals to be agreed together with scope of work. Live on the land in the bunkhouse or a tent - project provides a food allowance for volunteers if working more than 3 hours per day. *?bonus*? includes up to 2 days per week at the guest house. Rotate time away from the finca so that there’s always someone on the land.


1) kitchen garden - we have two courtyard gardens which I would like to figure out if it's possible to grow more vegetables in. I've had limited success in this to-date.

2) compost system - I tried once to implement a system but I think I was missing something. This needs to be small scale as we only have two small courtyard gardens and one of them is in the Guest House (needs to be ornamental as well). Currently we carry food waste to a compost pile at the Rainbow camp. Maybe you can figure out a better system.

3) create more bedside lamps for each of the guest rooms from recycled materials

4) design, test, install solar water heating system, starting with 1 test & potentially expanding to cover the entire guest house. I have a complete guide on how to do it -- just needs doing!!

6) cooking & general support - especially if there are multiple volunteers here, it would be great to have someone support with the cooking & on a daily basis, i would enjoy having someone to share healthy-cooking with as i often don't make the time

SPECIAL PROJECT: (1 to 2 months for it to take hold)
Support in developing a healthy eating practice, exercise routine, meditation and/or yoga. This can be combined with some of the above small projects.

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