We are a family (with two young kids) working toward implementing permaculture practices on a new homestead near Yosemite National Park. Below is, hopefully, most of the info you need.
It’s rough land that we recently purchased. There is currently nothing setup in terms of gardening, farming or permaculture. We are working with a permaculture designer and getting ready to implement supporting infrastructure. The work can include anything from digging, planting, simple construction, tending small animals (or helping to prepare spaces for them), and more—your flexibility is important. This is not yet a producing farm or homestead. We simply try to get ready for that. We ourselves are learning permaculture as we go.
We are in the town of Oakhurst, about 15 miles from the southern entrance of Yosemite National Park. There are regular buses that run between Oakhurst and Yosemite, and we are willing to pick volunteers up from as far away as Fresno, Merced or Modesto, so a car is not necessary. Our homestead is about 1.5 miles from the conveniences of Oakhurst, which include major grocery stores, restaurants and a theater. We are only about 3000 feet (1000 meters) in elevation, so it can be quite warm during the summer. Morning, evenings and nights are quite nice. We try to do most work before the heat of the day.
Accommodations will either be a tent (a large one, if you have kids) or an RV/trailer (which you might help to rehab). We ourselves live in a trailer that we are rehabilitating. A heated shower, compost toilet and laundry facilities, which we all use, are outside. Though things are a little rough right now, we do our best to keep things clean and neat. Our arrangement is more like glam-camping than actual camping. If you are single, you may need to share a tent/RV with someone else. Families, couples and friends will share their own space.
We expect 4 to 6 hours of work per day for 5 days per week. That said, we are perfectly fine with you taking multi-day excursions to Yosemite and Sierra-Nevada high country. A simple, 2-week, itinerary might be to work with us for 5 days the first week, then you explore Yosemite and the mountains for 3 to 5 days, and then come back to work another 4 days or so. It's all negotiable. It's best to go to Yosemite during the weekdays. During the weekends it's unbearably congested and not worth the hassle.
We require a minimum 2-week stay. Longer is better, so long as well all agree that the relationship is working for everyone.
We are hoping for families with young kids (ages 2 to 10). Our girls are 2.5 and 5.5. That said, if you do not have kids that's okay. Just be aware that our girls are social and will want to spend time with you. You will need to be open to this. And willingness to help build play structures for kids is appreciated.
We will provide 3 meals per day and can accommodate any kind of diet. On days that you travel into Yosemite or elsewhere, you will need to provide your own food.
We speak English, Russian, and broken Spanish. My wife's Russian language blog is here (lot's of pics--though not many from the homestead yet): http://polina.harbertstudio.com
If you have any questions, please send me an email or reply here. Thanks!
I'm interested in volunteering with your homestead. Are you still looking for help? I love gardening and animals. I don't have any children but love kids and would be happy help build play grounds. How many volunteers do you plan on housing?
I'm a single mom with 2 children 6 & 8. I am taking a permaculture design course with OSU and will be done in June, so I would love to see what the permaculture designer came up with on your site!. I'm from France but currently live in Oregon, and used to live in the Bay area before that, so I am familiar with the area you live in as I have hiked in Yosemite several times. I could come with my children the last week of July and first week of August or the 2 first weeks of August. Would this work for you? I'm interested in getting hands on work as my class is only online. How do you intend to keep children busy for 4 to 6 hours a day? My children are older and need some social interactions too, but I'm wondering how you think it would work with your much younger children, so my children wouldn't need me to watch over them during the time I'm working.
Let me tell you a bit more about us. My son is 8 and loves gardening and animals, so I would love to know what animals you have on site. I'm sure he could help tending them as he is very responsable. He is also good at babysitting younger children. My daughter is more of a girly type and loves dressing up and pretend games. But they are both used to being in nature. (we just moved back from living in a little village in the Alps in France).
Outside of permaculture, I'm a Montessori teacher.
Looking forward to hearing back from you.
posted 2 years ago
And here is a selfie of the 3 of us.
posted 2 years ago
Hi Isabelle & Vanessa! We'd love to have you both and I'm sending you private messages right now. Let's carry on the conversation there.
Hello!! ) I am very interested in helping out! I love this way of life and would dream come true to do this!! I don't have family. Never knew them. Wasn't lucky enough to get married or have kids bc it seemed the women around me just don't like being in nature like I do! Lol! Again I'll go into further detail later on if you guys are still seeking help. 2 weeks 2months 2years 2decades is not a problem either lol! I hope to hear from you..)) Collin.
Hi my name is Autumn and Id love to live on your land and help out and learn this lifestyle. Me and my fiancé have been wanting to learn this lifestyle so we can make it come true for us as well. We are both hard workers and willing and eager to learn. We have a 5 year old daughter named Arianna and she loves the outdoors as well. If you are still looking for help we would love to hear from you.