Pearlstone is seeking:
Professionals, active retirees, folks in between employment, or families with children ages 10 and up, you are welcome to come with younger children if you are able to supervise them; working in our pasture is a unique opportunity to engage with the animals, the community and/or the center.
High school students who want to complete service hours after school.
College students interested in farming, animal care and giving back to the local community.
To give one day a week for 10 weeks in a row – or 10 times over a shorter time- in the morning, afternoon and/or evening (times change with sunset and farm schedule!)
A midrash tells us that before seeing the burning bush, Moses walked a great distance to find a lamb that was lost. When Moses found it he said “I didn’t realize how thirsty you were and now you are exhausted” and he lifted it up onto his shoulders in order to take it back home. Upon seeing this, the Almighty declared “such a compassionate one, is the appropriate person to take my people out of bondage!”
You’ll hang out with our amazing herd of 7 loving dairy goats, 8 beautiful chickens and 4 ducks!
Learn compassion for your fellow creatures and homesteading skills
Access to ask questions to, and to join in our community of farmers, educators, and spiritual events.
Who can volunteer?
Must be able to lift and carry 50 lbs
Must be able to push and pull a goat weighing up to 150 pounds.
There is sometimes poison ivy in the pasture. We will teach you how to take precautions and not get itchy, but if you have an extremely severe allergy, eg: where breathing in the oils can affect you, then this is not for you.
Must be able and willing to work in all weather conditions, barring dangerous emergency conditions, of course.
Must be 14 years or older to volunteer with direct supervision
Must be 18 or older to volunteer without supervision (eg: weekend care when animal manager is off-site)
What is the expected volunteer commitment?
Volunteers will make 10-week commitments
This might include coming once a week or more often for those 10 weeks.
What are the Hours?
8-9 am to open the animal pasture during these summer months.
4-5 pm to close the animal pasture.
What do Animal Care Volunteers Do?
Apr-Nov: 3 jobs
Morning Care: 8a-9a Feed the chickens and goats, milk our two producing goats!
Egg collection: collect wash and label the eggs.
Evening Care: 30 mins to an hour at 4-5 pm: feed and close in the goats, close the chicken coop and duck coop
Contact us if you are interested in milking our goats. We especially appreciate volunteers interested in weekend goat milking and in spending time with our goats when they are pregnant, birthing and have had babies we must bottle-feed. Learning to milk a goat is a highly rewarding experience, which takes time. You will make a commitment to come more than once a week during the learning phase which will last as long as you need for it to, and then arrange an ongoing milking schedule when you are able to check in on the goats and milk safely, hygienically, and independently. Milking starts in May, a few weeks after our goats give birth. We cannot guarantee when you’d be able to start to get trained or what the schedule will look like in advance! Our goats are “dried off” in October-November. Volunteers interested in making a commitment to milking are encouraged to learn other pasture tasks and to get to know the goats before the milking season begins. This might also afford you the opportunity to care for the goats while they are pregnant and require different types of feed and care, or even to witness a goat birth.
How are Animal Care Volunteers Trained and Supervised?
Hygiene and safety for yourself and the animals
The basics of what to look for when checking in on the animals and their health
How to log your volunteer hours, to learn new tasks that need to happen and communicate with farmers for any needs or emergencies
If working independently: What to do/who to contact in the case of animal sickness, death, escape or other emergencies on the property
Our volunteer coordinator, and animal manager or other farm staff will work with you side by side until everyone feels comfortable! You may then work on your own, depending on the task.
The volunteer coordinator will check in with you via phone and email, let you know the schedule and someone will always be ‘on-call’ for the pasture while you are there
What should Animal Care volunteers wear/bring?
Long pants and closed toe -shoes at all times of year.
Water proof boots
Rain gear as needed
Sun protection/hat as needed
In winter: if you want to wear gloves, they should be a non-slip fabric to handle eggs
Evening workers should have a headlamp.