Rob and Elli started farming on a 1/4 acre back yard in downtown Richmond, VA in 2010. Inspired by their commitment, Elli’s aunt Liz purchased 31 acres in Keysville, VA in 2012 and invited Elli and Rob to expand their farm. They moved from Richmond with four laying hens and seven ducks. Within a year, the animal menagerie grew to 111 with additional ducks, laying hens, roosters, goats, geese, cattle, dogs, and cats. In 2014, Aunt Liz purchased an additional 80 acres which included a second farmhouse. Today, we manage heritage breed cattle, pigs, chickens, and ducks. We offer herd share dairy and cheese and deliver to drop sites in Richmond. We sell our duck and chicken eggs at a farmers’ market and two natural food stores in Richmond. We also sell pork and beef and will shortly begin producing broilers and meat ducks. With rotational grazing, we aim to restore top soil, sequester carbon, and grow nutrient dense delicious food.
Abundance Farm offers internships in 2016 for up to 5 interns. Each intern will adopt an enterprise to learn in depth and fully master over the course of the internship. Options include the following:
- Herd share dairy program that includes milking, making cheeses, and making fermented dairy products
- Beef cattle and pigs with a special focus on rotational grazing and pasture and woodlot management
- Laying birds with opportunity to work with chickens, ducks, and guinea hens in rotational grazing setting
- Meat birds including stewing hens and ducks, broilers, and meat ducks
- Market garden and compost program
At Abundance Farm, we are in our fourth year of existence and our first year of seriously marketing our products. Every penny we earn goes back into the farm to build the business. At this point, we cannot offer compensation.
We can provide free housing. We have a lovely farm house with three large bedrooms available. We will cover utilities and count on you to conserve energy to keep costs low. We also offer any food we have in abundance on the farm. In the spring and summer, look for lots of chicken eggs. During the late spring and summer, we will likely have vegetables from the garden. Throughout the year, as we process chickens, ducks, beef, and pigs, we will set aside some of the meat for ourselves and our interns. We won’t be able to provide you with all of your food, but you can count on tasting our products and relishing in any over abundance!
With three bedrooms, we can provide housing for three single people or two couples and a single person.
Interns will work an average of 25 hours per week on their particular enterprise. You can fill the remaining hours in a variety of ways. You may want to tackle a second enterprise. If we haven’t filled all of the internship slots, that is certainly a possibility. You may want to set up your own small garden to provide yourself with vegetables during the year. If so, we will carve out some space for you to do that. You could take a paying job in town or telecommute to earn some cash. That’s fine too. You might want to spend your time crafting your future farm budget and business plan. If so, we’d happily review it with you and discuss it so you can fine tune your vision and be ready for launching your own endeavor at the end of the year.
We ask interns to commit to staying with us through the end of November 2016. If you want to continue on for a second year to tackle a different enterprise, we are open to discussing that. If you want a second year to more fully master your current enterprise, that may also be an option.
Ten years ago, Elli was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis. The inflammation was extremely painful. Elli could barely walk or close her fist some days. Over the years, she has healed her body through diet, supplements, and lifestyle changes. Her diet no longer includes processed foods, sugar, grains, or modern oils. Most of the food she eats either comes from Abundance Farm or from farms owned by friends. Today, she can make a fist and dance all night. If you want to learn about nutrient dense foods, properly prepared, then Abundance Farm is the place for you!
How to Apply