About.

Who we are:

We are a young family Homesteading on a Caribbean Island of Bocas del Toro in Panama. We are looking for volunteers to help us with various projects. We aim at becoming more sustainable by reducing our dependence on external resources. We also aim at one day becoming a permaculture educational center where others can benefit from a rich, hands-on learning experience in which students can gain the practical knowledge and skills to apply to their own projects.


Some of our ongoing projects include:

Setting up a hydroponic system, black fly larva farming, setting up a plant and tree nursery, building a classroom area, building a campsite area, improving our waste management practices to produce zero waste or trash, building with clay or adobe, setting up a bio water-filter, create more raised beds and farming zones, make more trails, identify local plants, help create and design maps of trails and areas of the farm... These are just some examples of the many projects we aim to complete in the short term.

We are looking for hardworking and highly motivated individuals who are passionate about nature, don't mind getting dirty and wish to learn and gain skills in Permaculture and sustainability.


We are looking for anyone with experience or a strong will to learn any of the following skills:

Natural construction, gardening and farming, cloning and grafting, plant identification, food preservation and fermentation, woodworking and timber framing, aquaponics and hydroponics, renewable energy, water management and harvesting, homesteading, sustainable designs, organization systems and more.

If you think you have a skill that's not listed above that can benefit our project please get in touch!

Accommodations:

At this moment we have a main bunk room with very comfy mattresses, fan, wifi, etc inside the main house. We also have a few tents also with very comfy mattresses and WIFI on a deck inside a roofed wooden structure overlooking the sea.

Volunteers will have access to hot water for showers, drinking water and 2 meals per day. Volunteers will be responsible for helping with cooking and house chores to help things clean, tidy and organized.

Food:

We have mainly vegetarian diet, but we have no restrictions except for gluten. We occasionally eat meat and fish if from good sources. If you have a special diet or food allergy please let us know before making a commitment.

Free time:

During free time volunteers can enjoy our incredible waterfront location and go swimming, snorkeling, kayaking fishing, etc. The closest beach is only 5 minutes by boat or 30minutes by kayak. We also have many jungle trails to explore. We have a double kayak, a paddle dingy and an inflatable paddle board which you can use anytime, we also have snorkel sets but you are welcome to bring your own.

Transportation:

If you require transportation to town or the beach, we can arrange it for you, keep in mind that due to our location, transportation cost can be high. If your intention is go out parting often, or go to town every other day, we may not be your best option.


Volunteers will earn a great skill set from working on hands-on projects along like-minded individuals with which we all share great experiences while working together.

Bookings.

Free / Work-Trade

Carpentry and Woodworking

Minimum stay: 30 nightsMaximum capacity: 4 people
Food included
We are looking for carpenters/ woodworkers with some experience. Must be capable of using power tools (electric saw, drill. etc)

Accomodation in dorm provided. Towels and lienens provided.
3 meals per day included.
Wifi and hot showers.
Free / Work-Trade

Tree Surgeon / Arborist

Minimum stay: 10 nightsMaximum capacity: 2 people
Food included
We are looking for an experienced arborist to help us keep up with fallen trees, taking down dead trees and triming others.
Must be experienced using a chainsaw.

Accomodation in dorm provided. Towels and lienens provided.
3 meals per day included.
Wifi and hot showers.
Free / Work-Trade

Farming / Gardening

Minimum stay: 30 nightsMaximum capacity: 6 people
Food included
We are looking for self-driven individuals who are passionate about growing food / medicine.
Some of the ongoing tasks include:
Starting new plants, grafting, cloning, harvesting, composting, mulching, making raised beds, feeding the animals, nursing plants, etc.

Accomodation in tents. Towels and lienens provided.
3 meals per day included.
Wifi and outdoor showers and compost toilet.
$10/night

Outdoor tent w/ Outdoor shower and toilet

Minimum stay: 2 nightsMaximum capacity: 8 people
Food Not Included
Outdoor tent sites with access to outdoor shower. compost toilet, drinking water, WiFi and electricity.
Tent, matress and bed linenes provided.
$20/person

Long Term Internship Programs (8 weeks - 6 months)

Food included
Our program is great for anyone who is looking for a unique hands-on learn/work experience surrounded by nature and amazing like-minded people.

We believe that the best way to learn something is by doing it! Our hands-on programs will provide the stage, tools, and guidance for students to express their creativity and imagination while completing tangible projects in several different fields related to permaculture, sustainability, biology, natural building, renewable energy, agroforestry, botany, design thinking, food preservation, waste management, community building and much more.

WHAT IS THE COST FOR THE PROGRAM?
All options include meals, airport transfer, weekly transportation to town and more. (See “What’s included”)
Bunk room: $20 per night
Tent w/mattress, linens, power, outdoor shower and dry compost toilet: $15 per night

WHAT'S INCLUDED IN THE PROGRAM?
Besides the hands-on learning experience, our program also includes:
3 healthy and delicious meals per day
Round-trip airport transfer
One weekly round-trip transfer to town
Bed linens and hand-made soap provided
Free drinking water, tea, and coffee
Free use of kayak, paddle boat, snorkel gear
Free WIFI

WHAT IS THE TUITION FEE APLIED TO?
Tuition fees are used to cover the costs of lodging, meals, supplies, employee’s salaries, transportation, materials and tools for projects, improving and adding new infrastructure.

100% of your tuition fee gets reinvested in making La Chacra a better place for future students. No salaries or profits are collected by the owners.

CAN I RECEIVE UNIVERSITY CREDITS?
Most students are able to receive credits from our program, but it’s really up to your school, we suggest you consult with your University before enrolling in our program. We are more than happy to answer any question or provide any information they may require.

WHAT ARE THE THINGS TO DO ON FREE TIME AND DAYS OFF?
I’m glad you asked! Besides the already included trips to the beach and boat tours, there are many ways to have fun and enjoy your free time at La Chacra.
Some of the things to do in free time include:
Kayak or snorkel around the near by coral reef
Kayak to Red Frog Beach
Explore the jungle
Swim from the dock
kayak to the bat caves

MINIMUM STAY 8 WEEKS
Free / Work-Trade

Film Maker (Youtube)

Minimum stay: 45 nightsMaximum capacity: 2 people
Food included
We are looking for long term interns / volunteers to help document the various projects around the farm, make how-to, instructional or otherwise informational videos for our youtube channel.

Must have some experience in: Film making, video capture and video editing.
Must bring own camera equipment and must have a computer capable of editing video.

Accomodation in dorm provided. Towels and lienens provided.
3 meals per day included.
Wifi and hot showers.

MINIMUM STAY 8 WEEKS

Key Stats.

Year founded

2016

Size of project site

5.5 hectares

Languages spoken

  • English
  • Spanish

People on site

5 - 12

Dry season

December to April

Wet season

April to December

Living Conditions.

Sleeping

  • shared rooms
  • tent camping

Omnivore Food

  • communally cooked meals
  • over 80% locally sourced

Internet

  • medium: voice calls (no video)

Opportunities

La Chacra is currently offering the following opportunities:

  • carpentry
  • permaculture
  • making trails
  • clearing vegetation
  • natural building
  • planting, trimming and harvesting
  • Hydroponics
  • general farm work
  • marketing
  • content creation (blog articles)
  • content creation (video)
  • Marketing and branding
  • creating soil
  • water management
  • construction

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