3 or 6 Month Permaculture Apprenticeship

Permaculture Design a

Whole Systems Agricultural Approach


March 3rd to May 26th  2018, 3 places Full

June 2nd to August 25th 2018, 3 places Full

 2200€ per person

We are no longer taking applications.

This opportunity is offered in response to previous volunteers and Permaculture students who valued their experience here so much they demanded a formal long-term taught course. This required the construction and renovation of accommodation and facilities for students to use while on site.

We have invested a great deal of  time and thought in designing a curriculum to make this opportunity a valuable and mutually rewarding experience. The focus of this opportunity is to equip students with the skills to design, build and maintain durable abundant life sustaining systems. We have one of the most advanced permaculture design sites in the world but we are still evolving, demonstrating the advantages of integrated whole systems design, starting with the soil and working through animal husbandry up to the built environment. For 2018 we have our final building project planned an 11 by 3.5 meter Walipini (semi submerged greenhouse) some of this construction is from recycled materials, but this will be a valuable learning experience for our students during 2018 both in the construction and internal planting design.

This opportunity is open to English speaking none-smokers over the age of 18 who have a desire to learn and invest in a sustainable future. The apprenticeship intake starts at the beginning of the growing season so you will get plenty of opportunity to learn how to grow your own food intensively. The apprenticeship finishes at the end of May or August towards the end of the growing season, giving you the opportunity to learn how to harvest store and preserve the food you helped to raise and grow.

Each intake of apprentices will follow The Permaculture Design Certificate Course  curriculum on one day of each week culminating in a group design presentation before the end of their 3 month term. The first intake will help us start off the growing season with their study concentrating on the soil, sowing, planting and grafting. While all the theory will be covered during the permaculture curriculum, we will use the day to day routine to inform your mind and body with embedded skills which the PDC does not give us time for.

You will also have the opportunity to learn any of the crafts practised by Fiona or Steve including sewing, spinning or knitting, green woodworking, blacksmithing and woodturning, this is not the focus of this opportunity and is only offered as supplementary skills building addition to the main course curriculum.

The accommodation during the apprenticeship is our purpose adapted room with double bed en-suit shower, electricity and WIFI connection, or one of two new private rooms we constructed in our barn during 2015 these have single beds electricity and WIFI connection with access to compost showers and dry toilets nearby. We will provide bedding, but you will be responsible for the laundry of your bedding for the duration of the apprenticeship.

Kitchen room 006

Food; we offer 3 simple nutritious seasonal meals a day & Garden teas. No snack food or black tea and coffee. During the beginning of the growing season our diet is simpler, but as the year goes on we enjoy a more varied diet as intended by natures seasons.  We do not cater for any specialist diets, omnivore diet only on long-term courses. Catering is a communal activity with everyone taking part on a rotational basis cooking and clearing up after meals.

Apprentices work as part of the on-site team taking part in all activities necessary to maintain and improve all the systems on site including: feeding animals, milking cows, harvesting, making compost, collecting and stacking hay, gardening, weeding, fencing, hedge laying, food preservation, cheese making, butchery and sausage making, collecting & stacking firewood, preparing cooking and cleaning up after meals on a rotational basis etc. Some of these tasks can be repeated over days or weeks as the systems demand. Some of these tasks are seasonal or only necessary when our livestock dictate so may not be performed during your stay, if you have a particular interest let us know in your application so we can discuss whether that interest will be fulfilled. For more information Click Here and read this post it will give you more insight into our daily life. Our animals require feeding and milking seven days per week so the morning and evening routines will be performed by everyone on site seven days of the week, the morning routine takes about an hour and is done before breakfast. The evening routine can be done in much less time as we do not process milk in the evening, but milking still takes up to an hour.

Applicants should display the ability to be positive, flexible, committed to the opportunity and hard-working, if you are not capable of a days hard work because of health problems physical or mental this is not the opportunity for you. You will be required to be good at time keeping, able to work on your own or in a group and be self motivated. Applicants are expected to respect our and each others privacy, property and possessions throughout their stay.

We like to enjoy our surroundings so it’s not all work, we like to observe most weekends so when the farm does not make demands on us we have time to cycle, walk or visit local markets, brocantes and festivals including live music at the local bars 4 and 10 kilometres away. We have spare bicycles available for you to use during your stay to tour the area, we expect you to be responsible and care for the bicycles, including making repairs if you damage them.

The fees for this opportunity are fixed at 2200€ per person, if you are accepted we will ask you to pay a 1000€ none returnable deposit, first come first served, to reserve your place, the remaining 1200€ is due one month before your chosen start date. Your fees will be invested in our site helping to repair and regenerate the ecosystem for generations to come. Early application is recommended as there are a maximum of three places available for each intake. We will consider single people or a committed couple or committed friends for these positions.

We may consider someone taking up two apprenticeships consecutively if this is desirable, staying for the full season the fees would be  4400€, with a 2000€ none returnable deposit, first come first served to reserve your place, the remaining 2400€ is due one month before the start date. Once  accepted your deposit is expected within two weeks of acceptance. The application process takes a couple of weeks, please only apply if your funds will be available within that time scale i.e. one month.

There are no concessions available for these opportunities, the value of what is on offer far exceeds the fees. These are the lowest cost fees for a quality Permaculture a apprenticeship anywhere in the world at just 25€ per day these fees cover your accommodation and food costs our time and expertise are paid for with your full engagement in the work on the farm and the courses on offer.

One precautionary note this is not a holiday its a valuable learning opportunity, anyone hoping for a vacation paid for by their parents will be extremely disappointed by our daily work routine. I have only added this comment because of previous totally unfulfilling experiences with students who have lied to us on application and have little or no interest in our way of life.

We require a Skype  ID on which we can call you for a face to face interview we will organize an appropriate time with you so you are prepared for the interview. This is intended as a two way conversation so you understand what is expected of you and what you can expect to get from the opportunity on offer.

Please reread this page again and This Page before you fill out the form below in English as your first point of contact if you are interested in this opportunity. Applications received in any other format will not be considered as it demonstrates you have not read the page to this point.