Volunteer in France


Improving a hiking trail in the foothills of the Vercors
Baume Cornillane, Rhone-Alpes       July 2 - July 15, 2017


Volunteer project: Located in the foothills of the Vercors, this is a project for those who love nature and the great outdoors! The residents of La Baume Cornillane welcomed international volunteers in 2016 and will be waiting for you again for a two weeks of friendly exchanges and cultural discoveries. This small, rural and agricultural village protects its historical and environmental heritage and offers many starting points for beautiful hikes. Looking out over the plain of Valence and the surrounding mountains, this historic site offers a beautiful panoramic view of the region. The residents and local town council members are counting on your help to highlight the environment.

The village has natural and historic treasures. You will have the chance to leave a personal mark on this project. You will operate in a popular spot among hikers: a waterfall and a cave named “La grotte de la Dame” which is at the origin of the village’s name. Your task will consist of clearing plants away from the path going to these beautiful spots. Then you will make the path more safe by adding some wooden planks to protect it from the river. The place is shaded and surrounded by nature! You will be led by a professional who will help you with technical tasks. The work will take place in the morning (5 hours per day, 5 days per week). It’s a 20 minute walk from your accommodation to the work site.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: Meal with a local family, visit to Crest, hikes in the Vercors to explore caves and cliffs, swimming, visit to a farm, tasting local products, discovering villages typical of the Drôme area and, of course, intercultural exchanges with the other volunteers and residents.

Accommodation: You will enjoy a shared living space, basic but comfortable. You will sleep in tents on a site not far from the centre of this small village. You will have access to a municipal building with a kitchen, a large room for group activities and showers. Tents and mattresses will be provided; remember to bring your own sleeping bag.

Location: Located approximately 20km from the town of Valence and at the foot of the Vercors, a mountain range in the southern Prealps, La Baume Cornillane benefits from a beautiful environment, perfect for walks and relaxation. It is a small village in which the only business is a restaurant and it has no fewer than 3 goat farmers! The residents have their hearts set on showing you their region, countryside and gastronomic specialties.

Terminal: Valence

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Volunteering in an Emmaus community
Neuilly-Plaisance, Île-de-France       2 projects of 3 wks in July and August


FRENCH SPEAKING PROJECT
Volunteer project: Emmaus is a community that welcomes marginalised and homeless people, mostly men. They are called "companions". The community provides them with a place where they can live and work. It is a place where people live together in a spirit of solidarity. Some companions live there temporarily while going through a difficult phase in life and the community supports them towards social reintegration; others see life in the community as an alternative lifestyle. There are 3 founding principles in all Emmaus Communities: welcoming everybody regardless of their origin and past; rehabilitation through work; sharing and solidarity within the community.

The work will consist in helping the community in their everyday tasks such as: sorting out second hand clothes, sorting out second hand furniture, materials or books, helping to collect second hand items from the people's houses (only strong volunteers can do that), selling the books, clothes, furniture to the public, tidying up the different little “shops” in the community, and finally, any job that can be of benefit to the community.

There are 50 men living in the Emmaüs Neuilly Plaisance community. Most of the companions have had hard times and harsh experiences. They are often tough people in appearance, who won’t talk much at first. Volunteers should be mature and aware of the potential difficulties in communicating with the companions and gaining their trust.
It is important to keep in mind that this is a social project, and that the volunteers will have to adapt their schedule to the one of the companions. Volunteers will have to be really motivated because it is hard work: the team will work from Tuesday to Saturday, from 7:30 am to 5:00 pm. Sunday and Monday are free. Please note that although the project is close to Paris, you will have limited time to visit the city, due to long working hours.

As an additional activity, you will create an exhibition on the topic of tolerance, together with the companions. Your creative talents will be needed!

Special requirements: A motivation letter in English or French is required, to ensure that the volunteers understand the project and explain why they want to participate. Coming to Emmaüs means a commitment to respect both the companions and the rules of the community. You have to show tolerance and open-mindedness. Some knowledge of French would be appreciated.

Language: French

Possible free time activities: Walks along the Seine, visiting Paris or Vincennes, organized activities with the companions.

Accommodation: To facilitate communication and integration, volunteers will take their meals with the companions at the community restaurant. Volunteers will be hosted in basic conditions in a prefabricated building.

Location: Town of Neuilly-sur-Marne, Seine-St-Denis department (Ile de France)

Terminal: Neuilly-sur-Marne

Age range: 20 - 30 years old

All available dates for this project:
July 3 - July 22, 2017
July 31 - August 19, 2017

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Restoration of dry stone walls in the Beaujolais countryside
Charnay-en-Beaujolais, Rhone-Alpes       July 9 - July 23, 2017


Volunteer project: The small village of Charnay-en-Beaujolais, one of the most beautiful villages of the Pays des Pierres Dorées, is hosting this summer its second international volunteer project in order to combine the preservation of its heritage with a new dynamics of cultural exchanges. Residents are looking forward to welcoming the volunteers and sharing their love for the region. Welcome to the heart of the Beaujolais wine region!

Joined by local volunteers, who will share some traditional masonry techniques, you will take part in the restoration of a long wall made of dry stones upon the heights of the village. The region is well-known for its stone walls, therefore it is very important for the village to preserve and restore them. You will work 5 days a week, 4 to 5 hours per day, in the morning.

Special requirements: Volunteers must be able to ride a bicycle.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: You can visit the villages of the Beaujolais, the city of Lyon, several cellars, you can taste some Beaujolais wine, meet local people, join village festivals and the July 14th celebrations. Bikes will be provided for the volunteers - indeed it will be the preferred mode of transport to enjoy the surroundings.

Accommodation: You’ll be accommodated in a municipal building. Please don't forget your sleeping bag.

Location: Charnay (1100 inhabitants) has the great advantage of being located only 30 km from Lyon and at the very heart of the famous Beaujolais region! The area offers numerous possibilities for walks and tours which will enable you to discover the old villages and vineyards of the Beaujolais. Locals will advise you on the best spots!

Terminal: Charnay

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Rehabilitation of socially disadvantaged areas in Clermont Ferrand
Clermont Ferrand, Auvergne       July 9 - July 22, 2017


FRENCH SPEAKING PROJECT
Volunteer project: The group of international volunteers will be involved in the rehabilitation and cleaning of urban furniture in a socially disadvantaged area in Clermont Ferrand. The work will mainly consist in painting, cleaning entrance halls and common areas, tag cleaning, creating murals. You will work with local youth of the neighborhood, supervised by a professional. The local participants are unemployed young people who are part of a social and professional integration program. You will be divided into small groups to allow a mix between you, the volunteers, and the local youth. The aim is to enable young people in difficulty to open up to Europe and international opportunities. In addition, it will show to local young people another vision of youth, from outside their neighbourhood, in order to change their vision of the world.
Motivation is essential! You will work from Monday to Friday, from 8am to 12pm. You will participate in different activities in the afternoon: cultural visits, sports, etc. The project will have a real impact on people who live in this district.

Special requirements: Motivation letter required with application.

Language: French

Possible free time activities: Exchanges with sports and cultural associations, meetings with associations developing actions towards youth. In the town: walking tours, Cathedral, visit the various museums: the Museum of Art, museum Lecoq, museum Bargouin, sports activities, discovery of the Puy de Dome, visit of Vulcania.

Accommodation: You will be accommodated in an apartment in Clermont-Ferrand.

Location: Clermont-Ferrand is the prefecture of the department of Puy-de-Dome and capital of the Auvergne region. It is located in the Massif Central, at 410 m altitude. To the west, the city is dominated by a basaltic plateau (900m on average) with the chain of Puys, the largest chain of volcanoes (extinguished) in Europe, including the Puy de Dome, the most famous volcano. To the east, the metropolitan area reaches the plain of Limagne, with river Allier. The city is both a point of contact between the plain Limagne and Mountains of Domes. A large part of the city occupies a volcanic hill called the central plateau. It is, in fact, the edge of the crater, 156.000 years old. It is approximately 1,5 km in diameter and has been filled by the alluvium of the Tiretaine, a small river running through the city. Clermont is also built on the edge of the valley of Allier. The city has developed around this central plateau on which stands the cathedral, extending to the east in the plain, and to a lesser extent, on the hillsides to the west.

Terminal: Clermont Ferrand

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Restoration of a stone wash house
Montel-de-Gelat, Auvergne Rhône-Alpes       July 9 - July 29, 2017


Volunteer project: The work site in this project has a special interest: it tells some of the history of Montel-de-Gelat and the old way of life of its inhabitants. You will participate in the wash house renovation - an important place previously used and abandoned in recent decades. The work done during the project will benefit the local population.

You are going to restore a stone wash house (cleaning, storage stones, masonry) and a dry stone wall nearby using traditional dry stone techniques. The stone used is a typical local volcanic stone from the Auvergne volcano region. This project will allow to immerse ourselves in a somehow forgotten past. This is your challenge, and we are counting on you!
A technical supervisor will teach you specific techniques regarding this restoration. The work takes place in the morning for 5 hours a day. Afternoon and weekends are dedicated to other activities.

Language: English

Accommodation: You will be accommodated in the municipal camping in the center of the village. Mattress and tents are provided, please bring your sleeping bag.

Location: The village offers visitors a unique view of the Monts Dore, of Limousin and “Le Plomb du Cantal”. The city of Giat which is 3 km away offers numerous activities and festivals are organized during summer. The city of Giat shows its history in its built heritage but also thanks to the museum “Maison Archéologique des Combrailles” located in the neighboring town: Voingt. The town of Giat at the border of Millevaches Regional Natural Park. This small piece of land combining historical and rural heritage is also a good place to have some rest and enjoy beautiful hikes by the water!

Terminal: Pontaumur

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Creating a garden and renovating a dry stone wall in the heart of Beaujolais
Pays d’Oingt, Rhone-Alpes       July 9 - July 29, 2017


FRENCH SPEAKING PROJECT
Volunteer project: Come and discover the captivating region of Pierres Dorées through a variety of cultural and environmental activities! This summer, the three neighbor towns of Chatillon d’Azergues, Le Bois d’Oingt and Chessy-les-Mines will welcome for the 7th time in a row an international volunteer team in this pretty countryside between Lyon and the famous Beaujolais region!

The volunteer team will take part in various types of outdoor work every morning (4-5 hours per day, 5 days a week).
The first mission will be to carry on the renovation of a dry stone wall at the entrance of Châtillon d’Azergues village. You will have the opportunity to learn this technique with the help of the specialists who will be happy to lead you on the working site.
The second part of the project will be dedicated to the construction of the new municipal park of Bois d’Oingt, a beautiful “rose village” in the heart of Beaujolais vineyards. With the help of local youngsters and volunteers, you will participate in the creation of a green spot in the village center. Under the direction of permaculture specialists, you will create a botanic garden for public use that will aim towards a better maintenance of biodiversity. This will be a good opportunity to discover a new form of agriculture in an original way!
This project is a very good opportunity to establish contact with French speakers and to actively participate in the life of the community! The local youngsters will accompany you during the entire project.

Special requirements: This is a French speaking project. French will be the main language for the daily life, work and activities. We expect the volunteers to have at least a basic level of French!

Language: French

Possible free time activities: You will have various opportunities to discover this scenic area. Possible leisure and cultural activities include visits of the villages and wine cellars of Beaujolais, trip to the city of Lyon, French national day festivities, meetings with the locals, shared meals, tennis and river swimming. You will be invited to spend two days at an experimental permaculture farm, for a first agricultural and cultural experience.

Accommodation: This is a project for camping lovers! The former Chessy-les-Mines camp site, which will be your accommodation place, is situated halfway between the two towns and offers an ideal location near the village center, perfect for guitar nights and outdoor BBQs! Tents and mattresses will be provided; please don’t forget to bring your sleeping bag!

Location: The Pays d’Oingt is located 40 km north of Lyon, in the “Land of golden stones”, a lovely part of Beaujolais, known as "Little Tuscany". One can discover here many charming old villages and vineyards on the hill tops. Testimonies of past heritage are present everywhere.

Terminal: Chatillon d’Azergues

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Heritage conservation in Haute-Loire
Saint-Jean-de-Nay, Auvergne Rhône-Alpes       July 9 - July 29, 2017


Volunteer project: Saint-Jean-de-Nay is a picturesque rural village based in Haute-Loire. The municipality will welcome this summer a group of volunteers for the revitalization of the village. The residents and the municipality look forward to welcome you! Saint-Jean-de-Nay has a rich built heritage. Thus the municipality wishes to preserve with your help this heritage for the current and future generations.

You will participate in the renovation of the fountain which is a central element of the village. The tasks are: cleaning, repairing of the stones, reinforcement of the structure and paving around the fountain. This project will mainly require masonry work: a great opportunity to learn about this ancient craft! A technical supervisor will be on site to teach you specific restoration techniques. The team will work in the morning, for 5 hours a day.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: Visit to a cheese manufacture, sport activities, hiking, excursions, swimming.

Accommodation: You will be accommodated under tents with all the facilities nearby, 5 minutes from the town center.

Location: Saint-Jean-de-Nay is a rural village of 430 inhabitants, located in a preserved environment and it has a great architectural and historical build heritage. Archaeological remains from the Antiquity were found there. Saint-Jean-de-Nay is 6 km away from Loudes and 18 km away from Puy-en-Velay (the main city of Haute-Loire).

Terminal: Le Puy en Velay

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Restoration of an ancient castle in the Pyrenees
Durban-sur-Arize, Midi-Pyrenees       3 projects of 3 wks in July and August


Volunteer project: The Medieval Castle of Saint-Barthelemy and its chapel stand on a hill just above the gorges of Arize, in the municipality of Durban-sur-Arize. The aim of this project is to go further in the conservation of these buildings and continue the protection of the site, secure access to the castle and complete the development of a permanent visitor and volunteer center. A group of international volunteers is invited to help in this project for the fourth time.

The volunteers will take part in various maintenance and development projects on the site of the Château Saint-Barthelemy. This includes restoration of walls (masonry work), clearing of vegetation, etc.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: Located in the heart of Séronnais, the site offers many hiking opportunities. Local volunteers will offer you an introduction into archeology and rock climbing.

Accommodation: You will stay in tents on the grounds of the castle. Housing conditions are simple and basic (dry toilets and solar showers). The project is for those who love peace and nature. Access to the castle is only by foot (15 minutes up a steep path from the village).

Location: Located halfway between Foix and St Girons, Durban-sur-Arize, crossed by Arize, is a charming village in the Ariège part of the Regional Natural Park of the Pyrenees. With the castle overlooking, the village has a remarkable built heritage with many preserved stone buildings. The Castle of Saint-Barthelemy is an ancient medieval fortress dated back to the 11th century.

Terminal: Durban sur Arize

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

All available dates for this project:
July 10 - July 29, 2017
July 31 - August 12, 2017
August 16 - September 2, 2017

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Nature experience camp for teens
Vassieux en Vercors, Rhone-Alpes       2 projects of 2 wks in July and August


FRENCH SPEAKING PROJECT
Volunteer project: The project is based in an outdoor nature camp in the heart of the Vercors Regional Natural Park, a protected area of forested mountains in the Rhône-Alpes region of southeastern France. All kinds of projects have been hosted here through the years, with one goal: to enable a wider audience to live in the wilderness. The site is meant to become an educational place about energy transition. Since 2011, international volunteers have contributed to this project. In the last five years, the camp hosted groups of young volunteers for an eco-construction project and collective outdoors life, and wishes to repeat the experience this year.

During the project, your mission will be to continue the work done by the volunteers last year. You will be guided by the site’s supervisors and will accomplish varied tasks of eco-construction, such as redoing the primers and making the finishing touches on the roofs of eco-huts and on the paths. Natural/recycled materials will be used. You will also be given other tasks in order to maintain and keep the site running such as looking after the vegetable garden, writing a blog, doing different little improvements and constructions, and realizing a radio podcast. You will take part in leisure activities for the kids hosted in the site. This is the prefect project for nature lovers and creators of all stripes!

Special requirements: This is a French speaking project. French will be the main language of the daily life, the work and the activities. We expect the volunteers to have at least a basic level of French.

Language: French

Possible free time activities: With the help of the group leaders, you can organize numerous activities for leisure and discovery, group games in nature, hiking, visiting local food producers. The Vercors plateau is known for having sheltered great acts of resistance during the Second World War - you can also explore this piece of local history.

Accommodation: The facility is comfy but basic, made for the outdoor life enthusiasts. You will be accommodated in tents on the camp site. Mattresses will be provided, but please bring your sleeping bag. The camp host pays special attention to the management of resources, energy and waste on the site, but also to the source of materials and food. Whenever possible, meals are prepared with local and organic products.

Location: The campsite is located a few miles from Vassieux en Vercors, a mountain village at over 1000m altitude.

Terminal: Vassieux en Vercors

Age range: 14 - 17 years old

Extra fee: 380 Euro

All available dates for this project:
July 15 - July 29, 2017
August 1 - August 14, 2017

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Restoration and promotion of the historic heritage of Viviers
Viviers, Rhone-Alpes       July 16 - July 29, 2017


Volunteer project: Attention all architecture and heritage lovers! A great project is organised, with historical discoveries and friendly meetings. In this project, international participants will join efforts with French volunteers for the restoration and promotion of the regional heritage of Viviers, a splendid little town in Ardèche near the Rhône river. They will work on several historic sites, in particular a large Renaissance residence in the downtown and an old working-class housing. In partnership with Viviers town hall, international volunteer projects took place in the past 3 years. Local people will be happy to help you discover their city and its surroundings.

The international team will work with local volunteers on the two historic sites that are the pride of Viviers. If you are attracted by construction and architecture, this project is made for you! You will do stone work and stone cutting work, in a protected area alongside the House of the Knights, which is a magnificent mansion from the Renaissance. Your work will concern the enhancement of an arch, a window and a façade (for this a scaffold will be used with a specialist). You will also work on the site of a former working-class area called «Cité Lafarge» in order to clean a room which eventually could be used to show the way of living in the 1900’s. Two people specialized in stone work will also share their technical and historic knowledge with the group. You will work every morning, 4 to 5 hours a day, 5 days a week.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: Special evenings and meals will be organised during the project. Along with the local volunteers, you will have the opportunity to discover the region and its history: visits of the old city and historical sites in the surroundings, markets, hiking, kayaking the Ardèche river, nautical base. The local people are very enthusiastic to welcome the international volunteers!

Accommodation: The group will be hosted in a building in the city center. Mattresses will be provided but don’t forget to bring your sleeping bag.

Location: Viviers is a beautiful city of 4.000 inhabitants that overlooks the Rhône Valley. It has an important architectural heritage and a very nice and warm weather. The town hall and the local volunteers want to take advantage of your presence to organise a lot of meetings with the local population. Cultural discoveries and good atmosphere are surely guaranteed!

Terminal: Viviers

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Enhancement of the Fortress of the Dunes in the North of France
Leffrinckoucke, Nord-Pas de Calais       July 17 - August 7, 2017


Volunteer project: After eleven successful years of hosting international volunteers, the municipality of Leffrinckoucke wishes to invite a new group to take part in the restoration of the "Fortress of the Dunes", a military fort built in the XIXth century. The fortress is located in the North of France, 500 meters from the beach and 500 meters from the town of Dunkerque. The goal is to develop and enhance the site so that it can be visited and used for cultural purposes by local associations and groups, and at the same time to create intercultural dynamics by favouring links between the local people, visitors and volunteers.

In the past years, many improvements were made to receive the public: guided visits are organised, a secured guided circuit tour is offered outside, several rooms were restored including a particular one dedicated to the history of the fortification with an interactive map of Operation Dynamo.

With a technical leader, you will work on various parts of the site of the fortress. The planned activities consist of clearing the outskirts, restoration of the external staircases, collecting old paving stones and branches and clearing undergrowth off the ditches. This work will be carried out in small groups.
The volunteers will help prepare and participate in a meeting with associations of the town (Beach Fest) during the last weekend, and will present the international volunteer workcamps.

Language: English

Accommodation: In tents, at the municipal soccer field (stade municipal). Kitchen and showers nearby.

Location: The town of Leffrinckoucke is located a few kilometers from the town of Dunkerque. Buses are available to reach neighbouring towns. The nearest train station is in Dunkerque, and many connections are available by TGV to Lille (35 min) or Paris (2 hours).

Terminal: Dunkerque

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Jazz Festival in the medieval town of Crest
Crest, Rhone-Alpes       July 23 - August 9, 2017


FRENCH SPEAKING PROJECT
Volunteer project: Every year, the Crest Jazz Vocal Festival is the highlight of the summer in town. The preparation of this major event needs a lot of time and people available. For more than 10 years, motivated volunteers have helped with its organization.

Guided by volunteers of the association in charge, you will participate in the installation of the festival area, setting up rooms, cleaning after each performance (stages, outside space), waste management and recycling. At the end of the festival, you will have to remove and store the materials. On some evenings, you will also participate in drinks and concert posters selling. Therefore, participants have to be able to communicate in French. This is a project for enthusiastic and motivated volunteers who wish to practice French and enjoy good jazz music!

Note: Some tasks are repetitive, but essential. The organizers of the festival rely on your motivation to help them before, during, but also after the festival. Working hours will vary according to the needs. The time for leisure or group life will depend on the need for help for the festival. The volunteer work is 20 hours a week; you may have to work on Saturday and Sunday. The volunteers are expected to be dynamic, motivated, enthusiastic, ready to meet the many local volunteers and the festival audience, and of course, fond of music! You will have a free access pass for the whole festival duration and be able to attend most of the concerts.

Special requirements: In order to facilitate the contacts with the local population, this project is meant for French speakers/learners only! Language for working activities and exchanges within the volunteer team will mostly be French. You have to be able to communicate in French, at least at a basic level.

Language: French

Possible free time activities: Visit of the Tower of Crest, visit of the towns of Valence or Die (old town and cooperative cellar), night markets, free concerts within the jazz festival, swimming pool, canoe, hiking in the Vercors mountains... The volunteers will organize an international meal for the local people during the project.

Accommodation: In a former school. Mattresses will be provided; bring your own sleeping bag.

Location: Located in the Drôme valley, in the south of the Vercors regional park, the small town of Crest has 8000 inhabitants. Dominated by its medieval tower (52 m high), the town owns an inheritance of quality. Very busy in the summer period, the town offers many sport and cultural activities. Towns nearby: Montélimar (40 km) or Valence (30 km).

Terminal: Crest

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

Extra fee: 50 Euro

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Restoration of ancient water mills in Auvergne
Besse, Auvergne Rhône-Alpes       July 23 - August 12, 2017


Volunteer project: The diversity of the natural and built heritage of Besse-Et-Saint-Anastaise (the full name of the town) gives it a special attraction. It is located in the heart of the Auvergne volcanoes situated on the Massif du Sancy (the highest mountain in Auvergne). The town is known for its Ski resort “Super Besse”. The town attracts tourists both during summer and winter. Besse is also distinguished by its human dynamics, the number of associations and events happening in the area throughout the year. It is with great enthusiasm that the residents and the local associations will meet you in this authentic village.

Besse is crossed by a river taking its source from one of the deepest lakes in Europe, Lake Pavin. On the banks of this river called Couze Pavin, you can find old water mills. Two centuries ago men built water mills to use the energy of the river. These mills are now in ruins but they need to be saved. Your mission will be to preserve these mills. This would require cleaning the sites from invading vegetation and traditional masonry work. The aim of the project is preserving the history written by men of the past. The restoration work will be guided by a technical supervisor. The work will be for 5 hours a day in the morning.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: Some activities will be proposed to the volunteers such as tours, excursions, hiking, swimming.

Accommodation: You will be accommodated in an exceptional setting in a small cottage. Mattresses are provided. Please, bring your sleeping bag.

Location: Besse is considered as one of the most beautiful sites of the Auvergne region. The village is a part of the Natural Regional Park of the Volcanoes of Auvergne. It is located in the Massif du Sancy born 5 millions years ago. The village benefits of a preserved environment and great landscapes made up of volcanoes and lakes. Besse is 1hour away from Clermont-Ferrand. Terminal: Clermont-Ferrand

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Renovating an ancient fortification in Salins
Salins-les-Bains, Franche-Comté       July 30 - August 19, 2017


Volunteer project: Come to Salins-les-Bains, a small typical town in the French Jura, for an incredible experience! Salins is a welcoming town which has an impressive natural, gastronomic, and architectural heritage, such as the famous Great Saltworks listed in the UNESCO World Heritage sites. You will have the chance to take part in the enhancement of local heritage by taking part in this project!

The town owns a land plot in the centre that the representatives of the Community Center wish to transform into a community garden. In order to secure the access to the future garden, the municipality needs to renovate the fortification wall and stairs under there with the help of an international volunteer team.

You will help renovate an ancient fortification using traditional masonry techniques: removing old coating, jointing, and rebuilding some destroyed parts of the wall. You will be trained and supervised by a specialist who will happily share with you his knowledge and expertise. You will work 5 hours a day, in the morning, 5 days a week.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: Visit of the town, of the Salt museum, hiking in the surrounding mountains, swimming, shared meals and parties with locals, visit of a farm or a vineyard etc. You will be in charge of organizing an international meal for the inhabitants during your stay.

Accommodation: Accommodation will be in the Golden Tower (Tour Dorée), another architectural beauty of Salins. You will have a choice to sleep inside or in the garden in tents. Tents and ground mattresses will be provided, but please don’t forget to bring your sleeping bags.

Location: Located in the charming valley of La Furieuse, in the heart of the Jura region, Salins-les-Bains is a typical little town of Franche-Comté that has over 3000 inhabitants. Overlooked by two ancient forts and the Mount Poupet, the town has a rich cultural and natural heritage, as well as beautiful buildings which show the glorious past of this “saline city”; among them the UNESCO World Heritage “Saline building”. Salins-les-Bains developed with extraction and commercialization of salt and hosts nowadays many spa-goers.

Terminal: Salins-les-Bains

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Preservation of the ruins of a castle from the XIIc.
Bramevaque, Midi-Pyrenees       August 1 - August 19, 2017


Volunteer project: The municipality of Bramevaque and the district council of Barousse are mobilized to maintain and to restore the remains of the castle of the Earls of Comminges which attracts many visitors. For 22 years now, the small village of Bramevaque has been hosting international volunteer projects every summer which makes it possible to carry out this task and to create an original event in the village.

Supervised by an experienced mason, the group of volunteers will continue the conservation of the remains of the castle of the Earls of Comminges in Bramevaque. The work activities include clearing the overgrowth, masonry, building small stone walls. The site hosts several hundreds of visitors in the summer months.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: Hiking, swimming in the river, visit of prehistoric caves, the famous abbey of St Bertrand de Comminges, the water sports resort of Antignac, the Barousse museum.

Accommodation: You will stay in tents on the grounds of the castle. The living conditions are very simple and basic. The project is suitable for nature lovers. Access to the castle is only by foot (10 minute walk up a steep path from the village).

Location: Bramevaque is a charming rural village of 30 inhabitants, at the foot of the Pyrenees mountains marking the border with Spain. The site offers beautiful landscapes and view points. The Barousse valley is one of the most remarkable valleys of the Pyrenees; it is also on the itinerary of the “Tour de France” cycling race. The nearest cities are Montrejeau (15 km) and Toulouse (25 km).

Terminal: Montréjeau-Gourdan-Polignan

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Preservation of the Saint-Ilpize Castle
Saint-Ilpize, Auvergne       August 6 - August 26, 2017


Volunteer project: This project is about preservation and promotion of Chateau Fort Saint-Ilpize. International volunteers will have the opportunity to participate in the enhancement of this beautiful site and enjoy the local culture. The municipality of Saint-Ilpize is also a partner in this project. The castle is a protected national historic site.

The castle was roughed by nature: storm, winter snow, lush vegetation, and is now in great need of maintenance and rehabilitation. The group will work on the restoration of the staircase to the dungeon. This involves stone and masonry work. The project gives volunteers a chance to acquire skills in traditional masonry. A technical supervisor will be on site to teach you specific restoration techniques. The work is 5 hours a day in the morning.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: You can swim in the Allier which runs right next to the campsite. Hikes are possible around Saint-Ilpize. On August 15, you will participate in the feast of the UFO (Unidentified Floating Object): you’ll build a raft to participate in this fun and creative party!

Accommodation: The volunteers will stay at the campsite near the castle and just next to the Allier River. Mattresses and tents are provided. Please, bring your sleeping bag.

Location: Saint-Ilpize is a village of nearly 200 inhabitants located along the Allier River. The setting is exceptional: the nature is lush and historic sites are numerous!

Terminal: Saint Georges d'Aurac

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Improving access to the medieval castle of Montaigut-le-Blanc
Montaigut-le-Blanc, Auvergne       August 6 - August 26, 2017


Volunteer project: The city of Montaigut-le-Blanc is hosting for the second time a group of international volunteers during the summer of 2017. This project will be in partnership with a local association which is engaged in the preservation and enhancement of the town.

The village is crossed by many byways that provide access to the top of the village where the castle is located. The project will focus on these paths with the creation of a staircase and the implementation of stone. The objective is to facilitate access for people who want to discover this beautiful village. This project is a real opportunity to learn the craft of traditional masonry. A technical supervisor will be on site to teach you specific restoration techniques. The team will work 5 hours per day, in the morning, 5 days per week.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: Many activities can be arranged for exploring the area. You will also have free access to the swimming pool of Montaigut-le-Blanc (located nearby the campsite).

Accommodation: You will be accommodated in tents next to the town center in a green area along the river. Mattresses will be provided, bring your sleeping bag. Shops in the city of Champeix are located 3 km from Montaigut-Le-Blanc.

Location: The village of Montaigut-le-Blanc has an exceptional heritage making it a touristic village. It is characterized by its old houses arranged in tiers around a rocky outcrop which itself is crowned by a medieval castle.

Terminal: Champeix

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Restoration of ancient stone walls in Cantal
La Salve, Auvergne Rhône-Alpes       August 6 - August 26, 2017


Volunteer project: At the heart of an exceptional region with lush flora, let’s come to a colorful town! The municipality of Saint-Mamet-la-Salvetat wants to host a volunteer group, in the framework of development projects and arrangement of its historical heritage. Saint-Mamet-la-Salvetat is 750 meters above sea level, facing the mountains of Cantal and Aubrac, near Aurillac City, where a big festival takes place in August.

You will work at a 1000-year old site that needs to be restored. This site is located in a small village, La Salvetat, where stone and rocks are « the Master ». The work to save this site will focus on the restoration of dry stone walls around the Commandery (the name of the site is from the time it was established and ruled by Knight). You will learn how to build dry stone: the ancestral technique for stacking stones without any binder for making a wall solid and durable. A technical supervisor will show you the restoration techniques. The team will work for 5 hours in the morning.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: In the region, you can admire the landscapes by canoe, you will discover local farms, and hike the many trails through mountains and rivers.

Accommodation: Volunteers will be accommodated in a communal building. Remember to bring your sleeping bags.

Location: Saint-Mamet-la-Salvetat has an exceptional heritage: the bread oven, the cross of Cayre, the farrier shoeing stock, the fountain rack system, the mural of the village from past to present, the orchard with its young transplants, the “secadou” (building where chestnuts are dried), dry stone walls, the workshop (the former center to bottle carbonated water)... Indeed, in 1821 was discovered a source of sparkling water in the area, and it became legendary. A Natura 2000 site (200 hectares) is located nearby, and works to protect bats which hibernate in mining relics.

Terminal: Aurillac

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Heritage restoration project in Auvergne
Herment, Auvergne       August 6 - August 26, 2017


Volunteer project: The village of Herment is hosting for the fourth time an international volunteer project this summer. The project is part of a dynamic program of the municipality and regional agencies to enhance the attractiveness and openness of the village to the world. The aim of the project is very ambitious: the restoration of a historic dry stone retaining wall!

The dry stone wall that you will be working on is essential for maintaining a historical site called "The Walk of the Walls". You will restore this dry stone wall using traditional dry stone techniques. The stone used is a typical local volcanic stone from the Auvergne volcano region. A technical supervisor will teach you specific restoration techniques. The work takes place for 5 hours in the morning. Afternoons and weekends are dedicated to other activities.

Language: English

Accommodation: You will be accommodated in the municipal camping in the center of the village. Mattress are provided, bring your sleeping bag.

Location: Located at 830 m of altitude, the village of Herment has a remarkably rich heritage. The village offers visitors a unique view of the Monts Dore, of Limousin and “Le Plomb du Cantal” from the "Promenade des Walls". In addition, this rural mountainous area benefits from the tourist attraction of winter resorts and hydrotherapy in Massif du Sancy.

Terminal: Laqueuille

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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Couvre Feu music festival
Corsept, Pays-de-Loire       August 17 - September 1, 2017


Volunteer project: Couvre Feu is a music festival with rock, reggae, ska, metal, and pop rock concerts, which takes place every year in Corsept in the Loire-Atlantique department in western France. The 16th edition of the festival will take place on August 25, 26 and 27. The organization of such an event requires a lot of time and people available, and from the start, international volunteers have been involved in the organization of the festival to help run the event and accommodate nearly 30,000 visitors.

Supervised by the directors of the organizing team, you will participate in setting up and taking down the festival. This includes the installation of circus tents (where concerts take place), closing the site with fences, arranging parking lots, dressing rooms, refreshment stands and catering, dismantling and equipment storage. During the festival, you will be responsible for welcoming the public and site maintenance. The week following the weekend’s festival will be dedicated to dismantling, equipment storage, cleaning and restoration of the site.
Note: Tasks are a little repetitive but essential. Festival organizers are counting on your motivation to help before, during and after the festival. The work schedule will vary a lot according to the needs. Little time for leisure activities, but the atmosphere is very festive. Volunteers must be especially dynamic and enthusiastic, and of course must be music fans!

Language: English

Possible free time activities: Enjoying the beach and water sports; charming beach resorts like Pornic and Saint-Brevin-les-Pins; large sandy beaches dotted with fishing spots; walks along the coastal footpath in Bourgneuf Bay, along the Loire estuary, or in swamps and thickets of the hinterland.

Accommodation: You will stay, as all the other volunteers and organizers in tents at a camping site. Tents will be provided, you will need to bring a sleeping bag and mattress.

Location: Located on the south bank of the Loire estuary, and northern boundary of the Pays de Retz Atlantic, the village of Corsept has 2,600 inhabitants. Pays de Retz is at the heart of unspoiled landscapes between Brittany and the Vendee, west of Nantes and bordered by the Atlantic Ocean and the Loire.

Terminal: Nantes

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

Extra fee: 50 Euro

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Incredible Edible Billom
Billom, Auvergne       August 20 - September 2, 2017


Volunteer project: After 16 years of partnership with the Municipality of Billom, the locals welcome ever more enthusiastically the international volunteers. The project will take place in the heart of this beautiful medieval town.

The aim of the project is to help enrich the community of Billom by providing easy access to healthy local food. The volunteer work will involve the development of a garden plot in the park in the heart of the medieval town, where local residents will plant different vegetables and aromatic herbs in the spirit of the Incredible Edible movement. A technical supervisor will teach you specific techniques. You will work 5 hours a day, in the morning, 5 days a week, from Monday to Friday.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: Participation in a medieval festival, meeting with the local associations, visiting the medieval city, swimming pool, football, basketball, tennis, hiking in the gorges of Madet, horseback riding, visiting Mauzun Castle and the Castle of La Chaux Montgros, visiting the park Livradois Drill, visiting the cities of Clermont-Ferrand and Issoire.

Accommodation: In the main building of the campsite. Mattresses will be provided; bring your sleeping bag. There's a supermarket, bakery, butcher’s shop, restaurants, pharmacy and café in the village.

Location: Billom is a town of 4800 inhabitants located in the Regional Natural Park of Livradois-Forez, 20 min from Clermont-Ferrand and from Thiers. Originally Gallic village and druidic center, the Romans made of it a stop on the great way connecting Lyon to Bordeaux. Its intense development enabled the village to become one of the first important towns of Auvergne in the XII century and to build its fortifications. Billom is renowned for its medieval quarter in the heart of the city and its architectural and historical heritage. It is a dynamic city that hosts many events throughout the year. Billom is 25 km away from Clermont-Ferrand.

Terminal: Billom

Age range: 18 - 35 years old

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Building a path to the castle of Saint-Floret
St Floret, Auvergne Rhône-Alpes       August 20 - September 9, 2017


Volunteer project: The diversity of the built heritage gives to the town of Saint-Floret a special attraction. Located in the beginning of the Sancy Mountains, people love to come here during summer to have a good time. The local people are expecting the team of international volunteers with a great enthusiasm.

The volunteer work will focus on the enhancement of the former hamlet near the castle that is registered as a Historical Monument. You will participate in the construction of a stone path to create a way among the ruins. The work will be physical but interesting and rich of experience. You will work under the supervision of a technical person who will also teach you the needed techniques. The work takes place in the morning, 5 hours a day.

Language: English

Possible free time activities: Activities will be organized during your stay in partnership with local associations: a guided visit to the local heritage sites, excursions, hiking ...

Accommodation: Accommodation in a big room inside a public building nearby the town center. Mattresses are provided. Please, bring your sleeping bag.

Location: Saint-Floret is a lively tourist town in summer. The village offer a preserved environment and beautiful landscapes.

Terminal: Issoire

Age range: 18 - 30 years old

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