Join the community in Benediktus
Description: Benediktus is a small NGO that builds a community for people with mental disabilities in a village in Železné hory (Iron Mountains) in the centre of the Czech Republic. People with and without disabilities live together here and reconstruct this historical place in the spirit of traditions, handicrafts, and cultural legacy of our ancestors. Through life in community they strive to find and show the uniqueness of every single person. The community provides social services, creates sheltered employment (pottery, weaving and basket weaving workshops, fruit and herbs drying kiln) and supports local cultural and spiritual heritage. Moreover, people of the community formed a music band called BeneBend. They are very happy, when international volunteers come and have fun together!
Type of Work: Benediktus owns an estate which was abandoned for longer time in the past, so there are still several houses and projects under reconstruction. The volunteers will work manually and the tasks will focus mainly on building a shed for tools, chopping wood for winter, garden mowing, painting of buildings, gardening work such as weeding and cleaning of flower beds. Moreover small reparations and general maintenance of the area it depends on the current needs of the organization. Volunteers will work approximately 6 hours/day, weekend will be free.
Study Theme: The community of Benediktus offers an alternative to the psychiatric hospitals, and in contrast to them creates an environment where mentally disabled can establish friendly relationships with their assistants, develop their skills and to some extent gain independence. Coming here is a unique chance to experience life in such a community, work and spend free time with the people and learn something about social inclusion. But you will feel like you are in a big family, that is how friendly everyone here is! Moreover, you will discover the beautiful countryside of Iron Mountains.
Accommodation: Volunteers will be accommodated in a separate house, sleeping on beds and mattresses, please bring your own sleeping bag. There is a bathroom & toilet in the same house, and 2 more in another building few metres away. Heating can be provided by stove for wood. Volunteers will be eating together with the community and help with preparation of meals, vegetarian food possible. There is wi-fi access.
Language: The language spoken in the Czech Republic is Czech, but we do not expect you to know it! English will be the language of the workcamp, and we will teach basic words in Czech at the beginning, since most local people do not speak English. But do not worry, the people of Benediktus are very friendly and easy-going!
Requirements: Open mind and willingness to spend the whole workcamp together with the community. You will work, cook or make trips together.
Approximate Location: Community is located in a really small village in the middle of a beautiful nature of Železné hory. It is perfect for trips in calm woods and swimming in a river dam nearby.