Natural Building Collective

FAQ

When is your next workshop?

-We have workshops and work parties every spring and summer. But we often don’t know really far in advance what the dates will be. If you are curious about our upcoming season’s schedule, the best thing to do is keep checking the website. Events will be posted on our website as soon as their dates and details are confirmed. Generally there isn’t anything going on over the winter, though we occasionally have talks and slide shows.

How do I apply for a workshop?

-Each workshop or client’s work party will have its own write-up with all the info about where, when, how much, etc, a link to our application form, and the email address of that project’s coordinator. Please fill out the application and email it directly to the coordinator of the project you want to take part in. General applications (with no project specified) are not accepted.

Can I apprentice/volunteer with you? How can I become a Mudgirl?

-The first step to working with us in any capacity is to take a workshop with us or participate in a client’s work party that we are facilitating. This way we get to know each others personality and skills. If you are interested in learning from us more, come to as many projects that season as you can.
-All our workshop or workparty participants are technically volunteers. We charge for food and a cook’s wage, and participants barter their labour for the learning they are receiving. Our clients pay us, or we barter with each other, but we never charge labouring workshop participants for our wage. This is how we keep our workshops accessible! This also means that when you come to any of our projects you have an obligation to participate to the best of your abilities.
-Being a Mudgirl is about more than just doing natural building. We are a consensus-run collective of individuals who work together, make and follow policy together, have regular meetings, socialize, barter with each other and all contribute volunteer hours into making the Mudgirls Natural Building Collective a cohesive entity. If you really want to be a member, well, like any relationship, let’s get to know  each other and see where it leads. 🙂

I live in ____insert anywhere here__, will you come work for me?

-Maybe! We require that client’s pay our travel expenses as well as our wage. We also usually do an initial visit of the land, and another visit before a project starts to check on the quality of the materials we plan to work with. This is all challenging when our client is far away. However if travel expenses aren’t an issue for you, or if we are confident that we can transmit the necessary information without in-person visits, then it is quite possible that we can work for you. However you may find it more economical to find a local builder to work with.

Do you want to host a workshop on my land?

-Maybe! That depends, can you afford to hire us? When we hold workshops or our clients host work parties, our clients pay us our wage and travel expenses, and the workshop participants pay for food and a cook’s wage, and then barter their labour in exchange for the skills they are learning.

I want to hire you for a project, what’s the first step?

-You have land and a budget to build what you have in mind? Great! We can be hired to do a job from start to finish, or to come in at any stage of your build to do anything in our skill set (which is quite diverse). We can be hired as a crew, where it is just experienced Mudgirls working on building whatever you have in mind. We can also be hired to host a work party, wherein participants come and learn natural building skills while acting as a labour force.

Email us at mud.girls.cob@gmail.com. Tell us where you are, and about the project you have in mind. We will get back to you as soon as possible to discuss it further. Once it is established that you are a serious client with a feasible project, you will be assigned a Coordinator from within our collective. She will be your main contact as you work out all the preliminary details, and while we are on your job site.

What is the difference between a workshop and a work party?

-This is a technicality for us. Work parties are when clients pay us to facilitate people that want to learn natural building, while those people, the participants, act as a labour force to help get the client’s job done.

Workshops are when we are building for a Mudgirl. In this case, the Mudgirl facilitators are bartering with the project-hosting Mudgirl for our labour time, and once again, a group of participants are on hand to learn and labour.

The experience is very similar for the participant. The distinction is ours. In either case, participants pay for food and a cook’s wage, and are expected to work as well as they can on the job we are doing. Childcare is always free, meals and some snacks are provided, and participants are provided with space to camp for the duration of the workshop/work party.

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