We are seeking single and married Catholic adults who will commit to 1-3 years of year round volunteer service, for one to five days each week to work to restore our farm and farmland. When complete, it will serve as a place of hospitality for families, clergy, and children from difficult places; and a place to share our Catholic faith with each other as well as with visitors. The farm is designed to sustain itself through sales of its produce, and to support our family life apostolate’s projects and programs: strengthening family life, inspiring self sufficiency, and offering permanency to fatherless children.
It is our intention that this should be a valuable hands-on learning experience for everyone. Each individual will bring his or her own knowledge, experiences, and insights. What we propose is a kind of ‘rural life institute’ where we can practice self-sufficiency skills, and build a very close network of families that will help each other in prayer and deed. We hope that our volunteers will take what they learn here and teach it to others, perhaps start farm apostolates of their own. It is also our intention that a portion of the produce of our farm should be shared among our volunteers including vegetables, eggs, meat, and firewood. Grass fed beef will be made available at cost since the cattle belong to another farmer.
Ideally, we would have 50 or more volunteers, including individuals from families. Teens are welcome to volunteer with their families. Children are also welcome, but must be closely attended.
Capability and confidence with a variety of farm tools and equipment is a plus, but not necessary for all volunteers. These include chainsaws, tillers, chippers, scythes, machetes and more. Training on the operation of the tractor and equipment is possible.
The work can be heavy, dirty, and wet. Tasks include:
- mucking the barn
- clearing debris
- cutting trees and brush
- running electric fence
- scything hillsides
- building high tunnels
- building and repairing hives
- field prep
- seeding, planting, weeding, and harvesting
- watering fields
- tapping trees and boiling sap
- moving livestock (goats and later chickens)
- delivering water to animals
- assisting in the dairy (milking, processing, and cleaning)
- construction (hay wagons, mobile and standard barns/coops, gates and fences)
- event planning, marketing, and social media