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Valence-en-Poitou
All Year: Yes
Area (ha): 3
Persons: 1 or 2
Category: Homestay
Host ID: 38518
Country: France

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Last Updated: September 22, 2019

Hello everyone!

We are a French family and we welcome helpers throughout the year!
A great variety of tasks at hand: interior decoration, barn conversion, garden, landscaping, paint jobs, carpentry, making pizza in the old stone oven...We are also looking for people who like to spend a little time with children! And we have two horses and a donkey, who are not technically ours but who live with us. So the choice of what you do will also be yours!

We live in a large and comfortable farmhouse near the medieval city of Poitiers. Many attractions close by: we are 15 minutes from the Vallée des Singes (a huge park with monkeys running free), 1 hour from La Rochelle and the seaside, and 30 minutes from the famous Futuroscope, ...
We are trying to get an organic garden (permaculture) going, and are renovating some of the buildings on our land to host artistic workshops one day soon.
One of our last jobs was to roof an old stone oven building, insulate the roof in the barn, do the floors and plaster the walls.

If you like to work with wood, we have furniture to revamp/build, and any creative idea is welcome! I am creating pallet furniture for the garden and the barn this summer (2019).
If you like to be outdoors, there is landscaping, planting, weeding and woodcutting. You can learn how to drive a tractor.
You could also just spend time on the huge trampoline with our children (aged 12,10 and 7), they will make sure you get enough exercise!
Or walk our lovely dog (whippet) Horus!
We recently created a coworking space in our littel town, and there are lots of opportunities there to do things: bake cookies and serve coffee at the bar, make salads and quiches, help with the monthly art exhibition (install the pieces), help out with the communication, etc.

In exchange, you are offered a cosy room (1 or 2 beds or a double bed if you are a couple) with your own bathroom, good - mostly organic - food (we will adapt to any diet), wine, a great variety of different types of chocolates ;-) and good company.
We have three outgoing and curious children who like making new friends, they speak French and German, and are always keen to learn a word or phrase in other languages. Their current interest is arabic, since we just came back from Morocco! Our oldest son Milan has Down Syndrome, he will explain to you what that means and how it makes life interesting.
During your stay you can use a car. The village of Payré is very close by (you can even take the boat directly from our garden if you wish), it has a beautiful park called "îles de Payré" (Payré islands) with an outdoors fitness track, playground,etc.
I can send more photos if you contact us.
Apart from French, Yohann and I speak English, German and Spanish fluently, as well as Swedish (Yohann) and some Portuguese (Vera). We both work part-time in teaching. If you are learning French, we can most definitely help!
Our aim is to turn our home into a peaceful, and yet lively and stimulating place to live for everybody. We have a 8-year experience in participatory construction, since we have been building a straw bale house in the south of France, in the Ardeche region. We will gladly share that experience with you (we go regularly and some helpers have come and have loved the experience!).

We have had about twenty helpers so far, and it has been a great experience every time. We are still in touch with many of them, and some even come back! Helpers may stay anything from one to three weeks or possibly longer upon agreement - up to a few months, if things work out. We live 25 minutes from the centre of Poitiers, in a rural area. We can pick you up in Poitiers, but the nearest train station is Anché-Voulon (it's 5 minutes from our home).
We hope to hear from you!
Best regards, Vera and Yohann

Bonjour, nous sommes une famille franco-allemande. Nous vivons dans une ancienne ferme, dans un cadre rural, à 25 minutes de la jolie ville de Poitiers. Notre projet est de démarrer un potager bio et de rénover certains bâtiments pour en faire un lieu d'accueil culturel.
Nous avons trois enfants âgés de 10, 7 et 5 ans, et un petit chien très gentil, un lévrier whippet. Nous avons de l'expérience dans les chantiers participatifs, ayant construit une maison en paille en Ardèche sur ce mode. Ce fut une très belle expérience, et nous souhaitons poursuivre les rencontres avec d'autres personnes ouvertes, curieuses et solidaires.
Actuellement, nous cherchons de l'aide pour finir de décorer et d'équiper la maison, ainsi que pour le jardin (entretien, taille, bois), le verger, etc.. Nous avons mis en route la base du potager, selon des principes proches de la permaculture. Nous avons également entamé la restauration des bâtiments annexes, dont un four à pain en pierre (dont il faut finir le toit en vieilles tuiles) et une dépendance.
En échange, nous proposons un (ou deux) lit(s) douillet(s) dans votre chambre avec salle de bains, une bonne table (nourriture surtout bio), du bon vin, un accueil sympathique ...
La gare la plus proche est celle de Anché-Voulon. Nous pouvons aussi venir vous chercher à la gare de Poitiers!
A bientôt!
Vera et Yohann

reviews (24)
Helper: Franca Becker Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: Germany Date: September 8, 2019
I'm so sorry for the late review, but better late than never, right? I spent... view complete review

Helper: Sunil Bhatla Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: United States Date: June 13, 2019
When Vera contacted me and invited me to visit, I immediately said yes! And n... view complete review

Helper: Weizhe TAO Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: China Date: May 11, 2019
Sorry for the late review. I remember I writed a letter before I left, so I f... view complete review

Helper: Michele Renee Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: United States Date: April 24, 2019
Technically I was not a Helpx guest... I was the guest of a guest... However... view complete review

Helper: Audrey and Fabrice Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: New Zealand Date: April 7, 2019
This was a great place to stay with a good family in the countryside which wa... view complete review

Helper: Carlotta Partzsch Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: Austria Date: February 25, 2019
I stayed for 10 days at Vera and Yohanns place. The whole family is very wel... view complete review

Helper: Cristian Salvay Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: Argentina Date: October 2, 2018
I stayed 10 days with this wonderful family. It was my first helpX experience... view complete review

Helper: Christopher Allison Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: United States Date: October 1, 2018
Being my first HelpX experience, I was not sure what to expect. From the mom... view complete review

Helper: Eszter Kasi Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: Hungary Date: September 24, 2018
I had the time of my life with the Vera, Yohann and the children! I spent one... view complete review

Helper: Alejo Eremita Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: Argentina Date: August 24, 2018
What can I say, the two weeks I spent in Vera and Johan's place was the highl... view complete review

Helper: Seb Smith Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: Australia Date: June 18, 2018
I had a great time with Johan, Vera and the kids at their beautiful property.... view complete review

Helper: Patrick Malley Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: United Kingdom Date: May 29, 2018
I decided that I wanted to stay with Vera, Yohann, Milan, Felix and Yasmine a... view complete review

Helper: James Rafferty Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: Australia Date: February 17, 2018
I had a lovely time staying with Vera, Yohann, and there 3 kids. It was wonde... view complete review

Helper: Grant Percival Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: United Kingdom Date: October 19, 2017
The welcome I received from Vera, Yohann and their family was as warm as the ... view complete review

Helper: Matthew and Barbara Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: United Kingdom Date: August 18, 2017
This was our first Helpx experience so we were unsure what exactly to expect.... view complete review

Helper: Andreas Walter Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: Germany Date: August 9, 2017
I spent about 3 weeks with Vera and Yohann and I have nothing but good things... view complete review

Helper: Mahna Karan Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: Belgium Date: July 16, 2017
There is a place in the nature out of the map where you can find peace, joy, ... view complete review

Helper: Carlos Novillo Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: Argentina Date: July 2, 2017
This proyect is inspiring. The place its located between wheat, corn or sun... view complete review

Helper: Jack Paton Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: United Kingdom Date: June 16, 2017
I spent two weeks with Vera and Johann and their family in April, and I had a... view complete review

Helper: Adam Sinclair Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: Australia Date: July 3, 2016
After staying over 3 weeks I only have wonderful things to say about Vera, Yo... view complete review

Helper: Fay Kennedy Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: New Zealand Date: June 7, 2016
I have just completed a 1 month stay with Yohann, Vera, Katharina and the chi... view complete review

Helper: David Nelson Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: United Kingdom Date: April 28, 2016
Je viens de passer trois semaines plein de bonheur chez Yohann, Vera et les ... view complete review

Helper: Pascual Guiral Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: Spain Date: March 26, 2016
I was 4 months with the family, I was a experience! We did many different job... view complete review

Helper: Liam Hardy Profile: hidden - premier members only
From: United Kingdom Date: March 11, 2016
I left Yohann and Vera's house a few weeks ago, and I miss them! I had a w... view complete review

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