GRANDVAUX ECOVILLAGE is the first ecovillage of the French part of Switzerland, in Grandvaux (VD), in the middle of the vineyards of Lavaux (UNESCO). Our ecovillage is labelled ECOPOL, and we are part of the Global Ecovillage Network (GEN). Grandvaux is situated at 10 minutes by train from the city of Lausanne and 15 min walking from the Leman Lake. In front of the house, we have a common permaculture garden and some hiking path close to our house.
We adopt an ecological and community-based way of living. We live in relatively small private rooms (some of them have private bathroom and kitchen) and we have big shared spaces (cafeteria, party rooms, garage, multi-purpose rooms). The food is usually vegetarian and organic and we share as many things as possible in our everyday life, material and immaterial.
Kitchen Hand Cleaning Housekeeping Gardening
I spent 3 weeks in Smala and I learned a lot. The house has an awesome view of the lake and of the vinos. I need to warn, especially girls, that the place has a lot more men and that didn’t make me feel comfortable. I applied to do one kind of job and I ended up doing another one, even though they told me this would change with time. Hours of work are usually not assigned until either the night before or first thing in the morning and you need to fight for your days off. I was supposed to stay for 2 months, but I left early.
9 months ago
Julia arrived for 6-7 weeks to help in half housekeeping and other half social media contribution, as defined with her. After arriving, she starting complaining about housekeeping tasks. In our humble opinion, she was not very cooperative not respecting her duties, many times changing last minute and putting pressure on the team (rebel attitude). She kept on repeating her father was lawer and she did not show much cool attitude needed for an ecological sober life. We offered her extra leasures such as a flight simulator and a nice mountain treking at our own costs, and were happy to bring her joy.
But she explaind us she always had a housekeeping lady paid by her parents to make her laundry and other housekeeping in her house Brasil, and thus most of basic tasks were new for her such as making tea, using laundry... Lack of experience plus rebel and not much cooperative spirit did not facilitate her inclusion.
regarding her comment on hours. She did not use the digital tools toogl that we provided her to track her hours of volunteering, therefore we were unable to manage her schedule correctly.
Other volunteers such as Dylan and Mike stayed longer and were very happy, she was a bit isolated in her position.
It was her first volunteering experience and although we did not feel confortable with her frequent demands and pressure, we pardon and wish her the best !