Internships & Volunteers

2017 PCA Internship program at Djanbung Gardens

InternJoin us for a living learning experience as an intern at Djanbung Gardens. Interns will have completed a PDC (Permaculture Design Course) and be looking to consolidate their permaculture knowledge through practical experience on a well established working permaculture farm.

What we offer

  • A unique opportunity to learn in a living, working permaculture environment: vegetable gardens, orchard & food forest, integrated animal systems, water systems, and whatever other activities may be happening at the time such as building, bamboo work, events, general farm and property maintenance.
  • Mentoring and on-the-job training with our team of qualified experienced permaculturists
  • Practical experience in sustainable lifestyle, homesteading and a diverse range of permaculture practices and seasonal production systems
  • Communal living where you cooperate to share cooking, cleaning and living space with fellow interns as a self-organising community in the railway carriages, which contain a well equipped kitchen, showers, sleeping space, under-cover and outdoor communal living space, fire pit, cob oven etc. The carriage have electricity (solar-grid).
  • Free wifi and access to the incredible PCA reference library (thousand of books about permaculture, gardening, health and sustainability)
  • The option to take on additional activities according to your interests such as research, practical projects, involvement in local community projects and events
  • Option to participate in some of our workshops and special events for free and/or apply for a scholarship rate for short courses and professional development intensives. NB conditions apply.

Interns-gardeningWhat we expect from interns

  • Willingness to learn and share knowledge and ideas
  • Keen to work with us, independently and under direction, to listen and follow instructions
  • Ability to work in a team, accept feedback and take responsibility for your work
  • Participate in routine jobs as well as interesting and challenging projects
  • Be respectful and community-minded, participate in community living, chore-sharing and rosters
  • Passionate interest in nature, permaculture and sustainable living
  • Motivated to do your best and take pride in your work
  • Interact with visitors and the public in a polite, friendly and informative manner
  • (NB we do not tolerate substance abuse or working under the influence of alcohol or drugs.)

Please check out the detail information below about the different types of internships available

Internship work schedule

Work days are Tuesday-Friday, generally 5-6 hours per day, plus one weekend day per fortnight.  Mondays & free weekend days you will still contribute to the rostered daily routine chores of feeding the animals and watering the gardens.  Internships involving structured short courses will have different hours during the course program.

You need to bring:  sensible work clothing and long-sleeve shirt, closed shoes or work boots, your own bedding (and tent if camping), towel and toiletries (only natural products please). You are also welcome bring your own tools such as secateurs, gardening/work gloves and musical instruments.  We provide you with essential personal protective equipment for specific jobs. We do not permit pets on site.

Internships available in 2017


General PP Internships involve participating in a diverse range of seasonal work, garden and farm activities, communal living and whatever exciting things are happening at Djanbung Gardens. Permaculture Practices Internship is a minimum stay of 3 weeks payable in advance (we prefer a commitment to 4-6 weeks). These are available throughout most of the year, please check regarding availability for your preferred dates.

Note: we do not accept new interns less than 2 weeks before intensive courses and PD training programs, unless enrolled for the course

Permaculture Practices Internship Fees 

Initial 3 week period:  Basic w/camping $495 • w/Bunk bed $570 • w/Private room $645 

These fees cover camping/accommodation, site facilities (kitchen, showers, electricity, gas, wifi, use of permaculture library), basic contribution to communal kitty, orientation, mentoring and supervision. Interns may need to cover some additional food costs. 

Additional Weeks: Basic w/camping: $150/week ($275 for 2 weeks) •  w/ Bunk bed accommodation $175/week ($325 for 2 week) • w/ Private room accommodation $200/week ($375 for 2 weeks).  For periods longer than 5 weeks please see Long Term Internships

NB some specialist internship programs commence with an intensive short course to fast-track skills you’ll be practicing during your stay and these internship fees will also include the course cost.

APPLY NOW   download the General Internship Registration Form   Download

Specialist Internships

Robyn-Francis-basket-wrGREEN THUMB INTERNSHIP + Growing Abundance April 1 – May 15  (limited places available)

This internship commences with the 9-day intensive course Growing Abundance Year-Round for Self-reliance and Market Gardening followed by 5 weeks residential internship planting the winter gardens, harvest summer crops and participating in permaculture living at Djanbung Gardens.

Other activities during this internship will include making simple garden structures with bamboo, working on the Artisan Workshop for Forgotten Arts, assisting with special events, and other Djanbung activities. Special events during this period at Djanbung Gardens include Repair Cafe, Nimbin DJ Club,   Buninj Festival (Bundjalung Aboriginal Cultural Festival) and will end with hosting the Permaculture Australia Fair and AGM.

Green Thumbs Internship Fee: for full 6 weeks $1475  includes Growing Abundance Course & handbook (worth $925) plus 5 additional weeks living and participating in hands-on permaculture camping and communal kitty contribution for full internship period for an extra $550.  Optional extras for accommodation:    •  Bunk bed  $150 extra •  Private room  $275 extra

More details and Application form HERE

Long Term Internships

Djanbung Team and interns 2016

Djanbung Team and interns 2016. Fellicia, Andrew, Melian, Robyn, Sam, Aleasa and Pung

“Four of the months in Australia we have been living as interns at Djanbung Gardens, the Permaculture College Australia. We have learnt so much at this amazing place and meet heaps of inspiring and crazy people here. We have worked in the gardens, taken care of the animals, building bamboo structures helped setting up wonderful events and also attending heaps of courses.” – Pung (Sweden)

LONG TERM INTERNSHIPS 3-12 months  These are available by special application to interns who have already completed a minimum of 5 weeks General PP internship or completed a specialist internship at Djanbung Gardens. Long term Interns participate in all aspects of Djanbung Gardens and PCA, and be responsible for supervising volunteers in the gardens, coordinate rosters, conduct garden tours, develop management skills working with the management team and support the organisation of training programs, workshops and special events at Djanbung Gardens.

There is no charge for long term internships, though they will continue to contribute to the communal kitty ($25-$30/wk). Long Term Interns will receive free accommodation, access to courses and workshops and a personal garden plot. Long Term Interns can also undertake special projects of personal interest and are encouraged to participate in Nimbin community projects. Past interns have volunteered at the Nimbin Food Co-op, environment centre.

Long term interns are expected to contribute a 25-30 hrs/week plus meetings.

Study while you intern… We have had long term interns who’ve been undertaking full time vocational studies (e.g. Certificate IV in Permaculture at BRCC or by correspondence) while they live here. These interns have access to our extensive library and training resources, a personal garden plot, personal projects for course assignments and mentoring. These placements are subject to a 6 week trial period, during which time you will pay a reduced basic internship fee.

Do you have specialist skills to offer?   Talk to us if you have skills in photography, video & film editing, marketing & promotion, data base & IT, writing & editing, or in a specific trade such as building.  Special Skills Internships are individually negotiated. Send us your CV and let’s start talking…

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