help exchange   Host 12434
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Help Exchange

All Year: Dec - Oct (Oct-Dec also)
Area (ha):
Persons: 8-13
Category: Other
Host ID: 12434
Region: Northwest Territories

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Last Updated: March 23, 2020


Welcome to your home away from home in the serene, Canadian north. We are located 100km east of Yellowknife, NT in the rugged wilderness of Northern Canada. This is a multi award winning eco wilderness resort that caters to tourists, educational groups, conferences and guests alike.

Many miles from roads, or national suppliers of electricity and water, our lodge nonetheless provides many of the benefits of a luxury hotel, with the priceless addition of a pristine wilderness environment, unpolluted by artificial light or noise, the perfect setting for getting back to nature, discovering your true self, and tons of activities, all under the winter dark skies or the summer’s midnight sun.

First open in 1981, we have hosted a variety of international guests, including our staff and volunteers. To date our volunteers have come from Canada, the USA, Mexico, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Singapore, China, Japan, Korea, Thailand, Antigua, Taiwan, Malta, Ukraine, Poland, Bosnia Herzegovina, Austria, Germany, France, Italy, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Spain, Belgium, Philippines, Ireland, England, Scotland, and Wales. In a normal situation the lodge would have between 3-8 paid staff on site and 8-13 volunteers at a time.

The HelpX program provides a great opportunity for people to spend time closer to nature, experience northern Canadian living, refining and gaining skills, discovering and growing as a person, having a once in a life time travel and volunteer experience, as well as contributing to the life, survival and growth of the lodge.

The goal of our volunteer program is to open our small community to the world for people who have a keen desire to learn and participate in a working atmosphere of a remote bush camp / eco lodge. A work trade environment allows our lodge to operate with an international community, built of individuals with a variety of skills, languages, and passions, and to provide a life time experience as one of the only hosts in the north of Canada.

We offer a work trade agreement of 6 hours per day, 6 days per week, plus dishes pending on the business of the lodge. In return, volunteers are provided with full food and lodging, plus access to most of the amenities, equipment, and experiences that can be had onsite.

Meals are prepared by a professional chef, and are extremely high quality (and quantity!) often incorporating wild meats, local fish, produce from our gardens, plus hand harvested herbs and wild plants on site. Although we are able to cater to guest preferences only and most food allergies, we might be able to accommodate you if you are vegetarian, gluten free, etc, only if you are not picky, have an open mind and are okay with having say two out of three dishes served at a meal. Our food goals are northern, harvested, local, wild, sustainable, and everything is home made from scratch!

There are two varieties of accommodation available, one being our staff house, which is an open concept building with hang out space that sleeps 9 people. Or a shared canvas tent frame that sleeps two or three, but are usually reserved for couples. This is the wilderness your home is quiet and peaceful in nature, located in the forest, which of course comes with the responsibilities of chopping your own wood, kindling, getting water, and using outhouses! The benefits are limitless, making friends, family, community survival, and of course having your own sweet woodstove!

We ask for an 8 week (2 month) minimum stay as a volunteer with our operation and community, no exceptions. This is because it takes about three weeks for your to get used to our training, routines, and site, plus we have to cover all of the high costs of operating a remote location. Volunteers can get to Yellowknife, and from there we cover all of your flights on the bush planes, food, accommodation, and experiences.

A normal ‘year’ here is broken down into the following seasons:

December 10th – Mid April = Winter/Spring Season
Mid April – Mid June = Break Up
June – August = Summer Season
August – October 10th = Fall Season
October 10th – December 10th = Lodge is Closed to guests, but can be open for freeze for Freeze Up for minimal staff to do maintenance and cleaning.

Depending on the season, any special projects and your interests there are a wide variety of tasks available.

Year Round Work Includes:
• Baking, Cooking, Kitchen Prep, Serving, Cleaning Up Meals
• Dishes, Kitchen Cleaning, Bathroom Cleaning, Garbage and Recycling
• Bar Tending, Night Shifts, Aurora and Photography Watch, Child Care, Media Work (video, photo, blog writing)
• Carpentry, Construction, Plumbing, Electrical and Mechanical Work
• Hospitality, Guest Services, Guest Activities, Guiding Tours, Translating
• House Keeping, Laundry, Systems, Environmental Practices, Manual Labor
• Wood Chopping, Kindling Cutting, Chain Sawing Logs, Hauling Water etc.

Summer/ Fall Specific Work Includes:
• Planting, Watering, Harvesting the Gardens, Collecting Herbs and Wild Plants
• Fishing, Wildlife Track, Nature Tours
• Painting, Trail Building, Summer Projects and Maintenance, Kids Camps

Winter Spring Specific Work Includes:
• Snowmobiling, Hauling Wood, Pumping Water, Winter Activity Guiding
• Cabin Fires, Chopping More Wood, Moving and Packing Snow, Snow Trails
• Aurora Borealis Tours, Night Watch, Aurora and Guest Wake Up Services

We have hosted volunteer from 17 to 72 years of age, but are now welcoming applications from anyone over the age of 19.

We welcome a variety of skills and interests that can be shared and incorporated into your work contribution. As important as the skills and experiences that you have, it is extremely important to be open, flexible and try new things. It is also good to know your limitations and to be able to ask for help when needed. Although English is the language required to be spoken at the lodge, we are happy to take volunteers whose English skills may be limited.

How to Apply:
1) Send us a message on help x, then we can email you back and you can send us the following;
2) In the email tell us the dates that you are interested in coming.
3) Attach an updated resume or CV to the email.
4) Attach a letter of interest for why you think that you would be a good fit for our team, to the email. Tell us why you think you are a good fit for our team. This letter can tells us about yourself, your skills, your passions, any previous experiences that may be relevant, or what makes you want to come to this remote location?

*Please do not send us messages on facebook, social media, our Blachford tourism website, etc.

After you send us an email we will respond with our availability and schedule. We also have a document that we can send to you from our email that has all of the information about the lodge, how to get here, what you would be doing, what you would need to bring etc. . .

Please note that it can take up to two weeks for us to respond! We love to be outdoors and on adventures, and are not always online. Please be patient, we promise we will email you back!

Looking forward to hearing from you!
Cheers and Happy Travels,

Office Administrator
HR and Projects Consultant

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