Explore Our 2024 Guide to Gap Year Programs!

    Camphill Communities of North America

    Camphill Communities of North America


    • Listing Type: Gap Year Programs
    • Program Delivery: Residential
    • Destinations: Canada, United States
    • Credit Awarded: College
    • Program Length: Academic Year, Semester, Other
    • Start Month: January, June, September
    • Category: Community Service
    • Selective: No
    • Gender: Coed
    • Ages: 18, 19+, 19
    • Housing: Dorm, Homestay, Other
    • Financial Aid: Grants/Scholarships, Other, Work Study
    • Minimum Cost: Free
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    We create inclusive communities and schools that recognize and develop the unique gifts and capacities of each individual through artistic expression, sustainable agriculture, and a healthy interdependent lifestyle. Each community is designed to meet the needs of children or adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

    In Camphill, volunteers live in extended-family style homes and work alongside people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to create a neurodiverse community where everyone can contribute and receive. A Camphill experience provides an opportunity for you to discover and develop your potential as you cultivate lifelong friendships with interesting people from many different countries, backgrounds, and abilities. You will build new skills and creative capacities as you explore our different work areas, including:

    • Biodynamic farming, gardening, and forestry 

    • Artisan crafts from baking, bookbinding and ceramics to woodworking, weaving, and more

    • Performance arts like music, drama, and dance

    • Holistic special education and therapeutic practices

    No matter what you do, you are offered a life-changing opportunity with incredible personal growth potential. During the day, you will help support activities like those listed above. At home, you will have a private room in a beautiful environment, enjoy (and learn to prepare) nourishing, organic meals, and be part of a warm household community. In the house, you will join with others to help with the care, beauty, upkeep, and running of the home. You will also help with the health and care needs of the people with whom you live. Through this work, you will learn how to listen and observe more deeply, communicate more effectively, and connect with people more profoundly and therapeutically.

    Living in Camphill requires maturity, stamina, perseverance and an openness to learn. For those excited by this challenge, the rewards are manifold: personal satisfaction, friendships, discovering new interests and capacities, developing skills, making a impact, being part of a community effort for world healing. The selection process tends to give priority to those who are able to contribute more to the community and the people Camphill serves than they themselves require in terms of personal support and healing.

    If you enjoy nurturing the land, exploring the arts, and working with people, then get your Camphill application in today!

    Volunteers play an important role in the life and work of the community. Spend a year as a member of one of our house communities, sharing your life with houseparents, other volunteers and interns and, of course, with a group of individuals with special needs who will challenge you, engage you and ask you to change and develop every day. You will become part of a close-knit group of peers from all over the world who are going through this experience together and often develop long-lasting friendships that continue to be a significant part of their lives even after they have completed their volunteer service.


    Admissions are rolling, all coworkers receive full room and board, as well as a monthly stipend. Enjoy living in one of our vibrant and inspiring communities, eating healthy food and building lasting friendships.