Camphill Kyle: Information for volunteers
Hi folks, much of the general information for living and working in Camphill Kyle can be found on the Kyle homepage and in our pages on home life, work and activities, so please check them out. Below you will find more specific information which we hope will help you find your way to Kyle.
Applying to come to Kyle
If you are interested in spending some time in Kyle please contact Inga Schmager, Camphill Kyle, Coolagh, Callan, Co Kilkenny, Ireland Tel. 0353 (0)56 7706309, email: KyleCommunity@gmail.com ,who deals with volunteer and co-worker applications. You will be sent further details about Kyle plus a medical declaration and health questionnaire which you will need to complete and return. You will also need to provide three references and a police clearance certificate (this is a certificate from your local police office confirming that you have no criminal convictions). You can also go directly to our on-line application form on the Vacancies page of our website for the actual application form.
When you apply to Kyle please think carefully about how long you can commit to being here: if you offer a year we will expect you to stay for 12 months, if you are only free for 10 months or less please say so. It is confusing and disruptive if we do not have the necessary information to plan effectively, and last-minute changes are a problem for everyone.
People working in care situations such as ours are advised by the Health Authorities to consider vaccination against hepatitis B. If you wish to be vaccinated, please arrange it before you come.
Travel to Kyle
Travel to Ireland and to Camphill Kyle is straightforward: there are many cheap flights to Dublin, and from Dublin airport there are regular buses to Callan our local town.
Once you arrive here you will be shown around the community and given two or three days to settle in. You will then be given advice and guidance in relation to your work with the people you will be supporting. There are also two training programs that all volunteers participate in, the induction training and the introductory course.
Practical Needs, Money and Health Care
In common with other Camphill communities, nobody in Kyle receives wages. Volunteers receive €50 a week pocket money and, for those staying longer than three months receive €63 per month for holidays. Accommodation and all your food and basic toiletries (soap, shampoo etc) are provided by Kyle. You will need to bring clothing suitable for cold and wet weather and for working outside on the farm and garden. We also ask that you bring some smart clothes for celebrations and festivals.
Volunteers from European Union (EU) countries will qualify for a medical card in Ireland which entitles you to free medical treatment. However, you are advised to bring form E111 with you in case treatment is needed before the medical card is processed. It is advisable to have your teeth checked and dealt with before coming. If you do not come from a country in the EU, you will need to arrange private medical insurance before you come for the time that you are in Ireland. You will also need to bring four identical passport photographs in order to register with the police when you arrive.
Free time and holidays
Everyone has one free day during the week. In addition as there are no workshops during the weekends and life is more relaxed. You are entitled to 4 weeks holidays during the year but before arranging holidays this must be discussed in your house community to ensure that it is practically possible at any particular time.
In general, we are happy to host your friends and family for short visits. However, there are various conditions attached to this. Any proposed visits must be discussed in the house community before plans are made to ensure that the timing of the visit is suitable for everyone. We feel it is usually better that you don't receive visitors during your first three months in Kyle so that you can concentrate on settling into the community. We are a working community, not a holiday resort, so any visitors staying for more than two or three days would be expected to join our working life.
Is this for you?
Living in our community can be a great opportunity. It might sometimes be challenging in the beginning, when everything is new, to share not only the house but also ones life with those we support and with other co-workers from many different countries. Everyone has their own room of course but it can still feel quite intense, especially in the beginning to be surrounded by other people nearly all the time. At the same time, it can be great fun. It's a very idealistic way of life and a great possibility to learn about oneself through learning about the needs and gifts of others.
We look forward to welcoming you here and are confident you will have a positive experience.