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life experience

Longterm Volunteering

Camphill as a longterm way of life - Joining community in later life

Mature Volunteers - Volunteering as a Career BreakWhile many people, who volunteer in the Bridge Communities are in their early twenties and take a year out before going to university some are deciding to come to Camphill later in life as part of a career break.

Older co-workers often decide to stay for longer and become a very important part of the life of the Bridge Community.

They are usually able to take responsibility for others and can contribute their life experience to the different work areas in the community. While such a jump into the community in later life can initially take some adjustments those that continue and persevere often find that it is the kind of lifestyle they were looking for. Community can offer a lot that has become scarce in the world at large. It is a meaningful lifestyle with a strong sense of purpose and a shared striving for doing the good, sometimes intense, sometimes funny but rarely booring.

When people decide to stay longer they are usually joining our longterm group and become part of carrying the life in our community and the responsibilities involved.

There is many a story of people in Camphill who came for a year and enjoyed their stay so much that they decided to stay for longer, sometimes for 2-3 years, sometimes for 10-20 years or more.

This is often a gradual process of connecting to Camphill and of course depends on the individual.

Volunteering as a family lifestyle choice

Family VolunteeringFamilies form the heart and life of many house communities - Couples or single people and their children can really help in creating an atmosphere that is homely and engenders life.

I remember when my children were small and Justine, a girl with down syndrom used to play with them sometimes for several hours while I was doing other things around the house like trying to put a sunday dinner for 12 people on the table. My children grew up in this environment where there were always people around that they could relate to and where their social context was so much larger than just their Mom and Dad.

Many of the people with special needs appreciate the fact that there are children around and it helps people to connect to something that is more important than their own woes and troubles.

Yet we would be able to have three meals a day together with our children, something that many people who commute to work every day can only dream of.

Sometimes people ask me whether we think that our own family suffers living together with a house of many other people.

It is important to create moments in everyday when we are just our smaller family but that does not necessarily have to become a polarity.

I feel that it has enriched our family life and helped our children to be open-minded and tolerant and good communicators. They were able to grow up with a lot of space outside where they could run and be in a safe environment and if they wanted to they could quickly pop into wherever it was I was working and say hello or help a bit and get involved

Mischa (houseparent in the Bridge Community)


Why not contact us and we will gladly answer your questions about volunteering as a family...

Specific Needs for Workmasters

The following are openings and needs for live-in volunteers who are a little bit older (at least 25) who would like to take responsibility for a workshop with People with Special Needs and involve themselves in the life of the community on a more ongoing basis

Click below or on the right for current vacancies


Jan 01 1970



Minimum Age 0

Duration Minimum 3 months

The Bridge Camphill Community is currently seeking a highly motivated person to fill the following position.

Job Title:                   Special Needs Facilitator / Job Coach

Work Times:   9.30am  - 5.30pm Monday to Friday 35 hours

Pay Rate:                    €14.00 per hour

Job Purpose

To support the intentional community, in developing and formalising a person-centred culture, and to achieve a high quality of personal outcomes in a time of rapidly changing regulatory requirements, while maintaining its ethos and values.

The area of work will include a facilitative role for empowering people to expand their activities beyond the bounds of the community in line with the “New Directions” Policy. The successful candidate will demonstrate a willingness and flexibility to adapt within their role and take on additional responsibilities.

If you have a passion for empowering people with special needs and thrive on working in a job that requires many different skills sets, this might be for you.

General Job Description:

To provide residential, job coaching and lifestyle supports to adults with special needs, in an intentional community, by being part of a team of co-workers, volunteers and employees creating a positive living experience, and an environment and atmosphere within the home in which the needs of people can be met.

Key Requirements, Attributes and Qualifications for employees of The Bridge Community:

  • Level 5 or higher in health and social care or similar field
  • Excellent communication, people management and problem-solving skills, empathy and sensitivity to others.
  • The ability to work collaboratively and motivate a team to enthusiastically support individuals
  • Energy and enthusiasm, be highly motivated, reliable and  have a flexible approach to working hours
  • Good planning and time management skills
  • An openness to the Camphill Ethos and alternative  models of Social Care
  • An Understanding of HIQA Standards, Regulations, Safeguarding of Vulnerable Adults and Duty of Care
  • Work experience in a related area such as personal assistant/carer, community development or social care and/or community regeneration
  • Experience in supporting people that display challenging behaviour
  • Full Clean Driving Licence.
  • This post is subject to Garda vetting

Please direct all enquiries to Deirdre Mallitte at 045-481597. 

Full Job Descriptions and Person Specifications attached below

Applications will only be accepted by email to with letter of application and CV attached.

Closing Date for applications will be 5pm Wednesday the 02nd October 2019

Candidates shortlisted for interview will receive notification by the 4th October 2019
 for interviews being held between the dates 10th October to the 15th October 2018

Camphill is an equal opportunity employer.



Jan 01 1970

Local Volunteer


Minimum Age 18

Duration Minimum 3 months

At the Bridge Community we always welcome new volunteers to join our dynamic team of volunteers. There are many ways in which people can volunteer in our community and many different areas, some of which are:

  • An Tearmann
  • Coffeeshop/Bakery
  • House Workshop
  • Garden Workshop
  • Farm Workshop

If you have a spare few hours a week and would like to become involved in some way in our community do come in and chat to Ben Gamble who will be happy to discuss with you.

An awareness and interest in disability issues. The ability to work alongside adults with special needs, and volunteers while meeting the agreed developmental goals. Possess cultural awareness and sensitivity. Be highly flexible, honest and trustworthy. Excellent people, communication and problem solving skills.

Jan 01 1970

Volunteers for our Activities & Interests Programme and Befriending Programme


Minimum Age 18

Duration Minimum 3 months

-Do you have some time on your hands? -Would you like to make a contribution to a worthwhile cause? -Have you a sense of fun and are up to trying new things? If so we would like to hear from you. Our Activities & Interests Programme makes art, music, craft, literacy, sports, drama, dance, IT Skills and other topics accessible to people of all abilities in an informal and fun way. It is run with coworkers of the Bridge Community and the help of local volunteers who contribute their interest, knowledge, skill and enthusiasm in whatever way they can. If you think you might be able to contribute to a group of all abilities in one of these areas we would love to hear from you. We are looking for volunteers able to commit to Monday mornings from 9.30-12.30 for 2-3 months We are also looking for Volunteers for our Befriending Programme for a couple of hours a week in the evenings or at weekends, assisting with outings to museums, cultural centres, concerts, walking, playing cards, paired reading, going to the movies etc. We will try and pair you with someone with compatible interests.

All our volunteers need Garda Vetting and References. Don’t worry if this is a bit daunting - We can guide you through these and give you hand filling out forms. For further information please  phone Gese at 045-481597or 087-6390888 or call into the office and ask for Ben.

Contact The Bridge

Address  Main Street
Co. Kildare
Phone   +353 (0) 45 481597

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