Nepal is still rooted in agriculture, so spending time on a farm will shed light on many aspects of Nepali culture and language. But volunteers have been drawn to this program for more varied reasons: to learn skills in running an organic farming operation so they can start a business back home, to take a sabbatical from desk jobs by working outdoors for a month or longer, to learn techniques to help relieve hunger among impoverished people without using toxic pesticides or fertilizers.
No matter what your skill level, you can volunteer with our Organic Farming and Permaculture Program and gain hands-on experience helping farmers, students and local communities cultivate and harvest organic crops, vegetables, fruits, herbs through sustainable farming methods. Staying on our farms, you will have opportunities to learn more about organic farming, experience rural Nepali lifestyles and practice Nepali. Volunteers participate in the seasonal and daily rounds of the farm and household and can also engage in community projects.
Specific activities may include:
- milking buffaloes
- planting or harvesting vegetables, fruits, crops and herbs
- developing forest farms
- preparing compost
- controling pests with organic methods
- preparing organic liquid fertilizers
- preparing biogas.
Of course, growing food is only part of the job. Next comes all the work that gets that food to the table. In Nepal, that work is often done by women, but in many of our host homes, men are encouraged to join in too. So volunteers may learn to churn butter, grind turmeric and specialty flours, prepare spicy chutneys, and learn how to make homestyle Nepali dal bhat.