Help Exchange

What is Help Exchange?

Help Exchange, an online listing of host organic farms, non-organic farms, farmstays, homestays, ranches, lodges, B&B, inns, backpackers hostels and even sailing boats who invite volunteer helpers to stay with them short-term in exchange for food and accommodation (board and lodging).

Lena on an evenings ride near her house

Someone enjoying an evenings ride in the paddock

This scheme is primarily provided as a cultural exchange for working holiday makers who wish to have the opportunity during their travels abroad, of staying with local people and gaining some practical experience.  The typical arrangement is for the helper to work an average of 4 hours per day and in return receive free accommodation and meals for their efforts.  This time range can vary considerably.  Some will give weekends off.

The Stables

The Stables

Each host operates differently so it’s matter of making a suitable arrangement between host and helper.   Helpers will often live with the host family and be expected to join in and offer a helping hand with day-to-day activities.  Therefore the success of this partnership will depend on mutual co-operation.  To contact Giddy Up GG’s just click here.

What Giddy Up GG’s may except from you?

One of my help exchange members mucking out embers stable

Joe mucking out embers stable

When coming to work on this horse farm, you should expect to do a wide range of various jobs.

You should expect; Working with the horse (feeding/horse care)/Egg collecting/Gardening/Playing with the dogs/General maintenance + repairs (from mending fences to painting)/House work (light cleaning +

Start of the rug rack project

Start of the rug rack project

cooking)/Chook herding/Various building projects (previous projects included:- Chook housing, Shed building, Making stable doors).

Obviously not everyone who wishes to come here is expected to do all the above.  It’s just to give you an idea of the things you can have a go at. Things that will help you are  some basic skills and knowledge (knowing what the difference between a spade and shovel is), being to work independently and you will also need to bring one of those big old  smiles with you, but if you don’t have one we’ve got plenty here you can pick from.

Reviews from past help exchange members

Joe Bogumsky

Joe and Milo

Joe and Milo

I arrived at Digger’s Rest, not totally sure what to expect.  Got off the train and was warmly greeted by another help exchange member.  Got shown around the house, stables etc….had a cuppa tea, while getting licked by three wonderful dogs, and then, coming down the lane was Lena.  From a distance she waved madly at me and at that point I felt right at home.  My job’s/project’s a.k.a obsessions were

Joe's stable door

Joe's stable door

to make a big chicken coop, fix loads of things, make a new stable door, finish building a shelter for two horses etc…..most of the material’s I found around the farm/stables, but my love became known as Bunnings (hardware shop).  I also wanted to learn about horses, which I did.  It was a shame that I had to go as it had really become just like home for just over a month.  This has been a fantastic start to my Help Exchange adventures.  Thanks so much for the opportunity to become part of the mad house!  Loved every minute of it!  Message to Help exchange members – there are so many job options, it just depends on what you enjoy.  If you want to get stuck in with jobs around the farm, maybe fix things, make things and learn about horses, then this farm is definitely the place to be.


I’d only been here for one weekend when I knew I’d be sticking around for a while. The work is endless, but so are the cups of tea… You’re exhausted when you fall into bed at night but you look forward to what the next day will bring. The knowledge you gain here is priceless, yet no matter how overloaded you may or may not get, you will still ask more and more questions – between them, both Lena and Laurence are pretty much guaranteed to know the answer. As well as hard work what will be expected of you is: smiling, laughing, dancing, SINGING (at the very top of your voice!)

this is how you use it! Aly 12-2-10

I’ve met some wonderful people and I’m already thinking about how much I’ll miss them when I’ve gone…

Even though that may not be for a while…!Be ready to try anything, and enjoy it!

Emily and Nico:

One word to start….awesome!!!!!

We spent three weeks in Giddy up ggs…we learnt a lot in this place…it was the first time for us to riding…great experience!

A big thank you for  Lena and Laurence…they are amazing!They know every things about horses…

The horses…we need to talk about them…they are so cute, so differe

nt from each other…we need to learnt about each personnality…it’s very interesting!

We are already so sad to leave…!We lived a very good time here with you!

Thank for all,  for your smiling and your happyness!

See you!

wake up Nicho!

work harder Nicholas!


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