Theomerla.. Set in the heart of the Swedish countryside..
Volunteering at Theomerla
We have volunteer opportunities at Theomerla Eco Project in Sweden throughout the year but especially during the summer from April to November. The normal work week for a volunteer will consist of 6 hours a day, 5 days a week, depending upon on the weather, plans and jobs (this includes the breaks we have). After the work is done, it is time for us to relax.
We can currently welcome up to 4 volunteers in the main house (rooms consist of 1 single, 1 twin and 1 double room - see photos of the rooms on the gallery page). You will have access to the facilities in the main house including, the upstairs toilet, downstairs shower and toilet, as well as the utility room. You may also use the wireless internet connection in the evenings if needed.
You will share meals in the main farmhouse in return for assisting us with various projects on the buildings and land. Placements are usually offered short term of up to 3 weeks (however longer term opportunities can be negotiated up to a maximum 7 months).
In your leisure time, there is plenty to do and see in the area. On site we have a pool (seasonal) and sauna which you can book the use of. There is also a small library of books and magazines you may borrow. We also have film nights in the lounge on occasion which you will be welcome to join us at.
Lake Vänern is approximately 10 minutes away by car, where there is a beach and café. Kristinehamn is approximately 22 minutes away by car; here you will find many attractions, shops, café’s and supermarkets (find out more about what is nearby in our local area section). There is a bus service into Kristinehamn and we will happily take you to the bus stop with prior arrangement. You will be welcome to come with us on trips out and into town shopping.
If you are interested in volunteering at Theomerla, then please register via the contact form giving us information about the dates you are available. You will then be contacted via email with a list of all volunteer opportunities currently available.
What do hosts expect from volunteers?
Written by Claudio Pozzi of WWOOF Italy
The most important quality for a volunteer to have is to be able to fit into the very different lifestyles that the hosts lead. You are expected to be interested in what they do and help. They would like some help with the chores (such as cooking and washing up) and appreciate it if you did not create more work for your host. Hosts are all very hardworking people mainly living on a tight budget and you should accept this fact and respect it.
Volunteering is NOT a cheap holiday and way to travel. It is to help small organic farms and to teach people about the organic movement and give them hands on experience and to help out organic producers as organic production is very labour intensive. If all you are looking for is free accommodation on your holidays VOLUNTEERING IS NOT FOR YOU.
Always respect the dates you arrange with your host, if you have to change them for any reason you must give your host ample warning so that they can make other arrangements. Please don't just not turn up, this can cause major problems for your host (who has probably turned down other people as they were expecting you to come). Please be responsible and thoughtful and take your responsibilities seriously. If your stay is not working out for your host they can always ask you to leave, although with good communication between host and volunteer it does not usually need to resort to this.
What should volunteers expect from hosts?
Written by Claudio Pozzi of WWOOF Italy
A host should offer you basic accommodation and food, you should check before you go exactly what this is as it varies greatly from farm to farm. Some may only have a tent, others may ask you bring your own tent. You may well need to take a sleeping bag. Most have a room for volunteers. If you have special dietary requirements (ie vegetarian, vegan etc) or specific allergies (ie to animals) you should check with your host that this is alright before you go. The host should be with you at times and be willing to teach you about organic farming. It is very likely that you will have to do things on your own a fair amount and many of the tasks may be mundane, but a lot of agriculture is! Once again check with your host what jobs you will be doing. If for some reason the situation is not satisfactory for you discuss it with you hosts and if a solution cannot be reached you are under no obligation to stay if the situation is intolerable. Any feedback to us would be appreciated.
List of Jobs/Projects at Theomerla we are looking for Volunteers to help with:
Clearing the Land
This will involve clearing away rubbish, debris from previous tree cutting, removing the ground cover, trimming bushes and removing some trees as well as levelling and terracing the land to make it suitable to plant crops. We also need to clear all the drainage ditches and remove all the self-seeded firs from the land.
Establishing the Vegetable plots
We will be setting out the beds for growing Vegetables as well as marking out the areas for the polytunnels and greenhouses. Then planting the seeds for the first crops.
Establishing the Orchard
Here we will be marking out the area for the mixed fruit/nut orchard and planting the first trees.
We want to establish some small coppices of varying trees including; Willow, Sweet Chesnutt, Birch,
Beech, Ash, Oak, Hazel and Alder.
Repairs to the North Barn
The North Barn needs repairs to the Roof, as well as general repairs to the walls, doors and windows to make it weather tight.
Repairs to the South Barn
The South Barn needs general repairs to its walls, doors and windows to make it weather tight.
General Building Maintenance
All the buildings need general maintenance and repainting to bring them up to a good standard and stop any further deterioration.
General Land Maintenance
Hedge trimming, tree felling and firewood collection.