Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Want to Help Restore a Medieval Village?

If you're thinking of visiting Provence next year...do it this way and you'll learn new skills, give something back, leave your mark on an ancient village and meet people from all over the world.

Since 1969, the international volunteer program La Sabranenque has been devoted to the safeguarding and restoration of traditional rural architecture in Southern France. They're now accepting applications for summer 2012, to work on the restoration of the medieval Provencale site and village called Saint Victor la Coste. La Sabranenque hosts 150 to 200 participants of all ages and nationalities annually. No previous restoration work is required but you must be at least 18. 

Saint Victor la Coste is a picturesque village of approximately 1900 people set in a beautiful landscape between Nimes and Avignon.  At the foot of a hill dominated by a medieval castle, the village overlooks a small vineyard-covered plain. The territory has been inhabited for several millenia; neolithic and Bronze Age artifacts have been found and several known Roman sites are nearby.

Volunteers may sign up for various sessions in 2012, some of which include cooking and wine experiences. In the traditional program, volunteers work on the site in the morning and have afternoons free to explore and relax. Volunteers also participate in everyday, communal activities such as kitchen work. A Provencale cooking stage, which involves no stone work, is a new program this year.

The various options for 2012 are:  
*Traditional 12-day volunteer sessions (offered June 4 through Sept 22).
*Provencale Cooking Stage (with no stone work).
*Volunteer and Visit in Provence.
*Volunteer and Wine Exploration.
*Volunteer, Hike and Discover Provence.

For more info, visit the Sabranenque site here. You can also email: info@sabranenque.com

Photos: The work, restored village walls, the village from above, more work.


  1. Sounds very worthwhile and fun. I'll have to do a post on this sometime in the future, too. I imagine many would be interested.

    Thanks for the info, Julie!

  2. What a wonderful project! Thanks so much for sharing this information with us.

  3. This is so cool, Julie. I sent it off to my kids within...oh...30 seconds. And I want to do it too!

  4. I did this program 2 years in a row...once for 4 weeks, the second for 6 weeks. La Sab changed my life, forever. Since then (11 years, now!) I have returned to the area every summer, and keep in touch with the friends I made there. HIGHLY RECOMMEND!!!

  5. Well this sounds like paradise for us, we have a fantastic village in Italy we have our eye on for a restoration...fantastic will be following along, ciao lisa

  6. It's actually a cool and useful piece of information. I'm glad that you
    shared this helpful info with us. Please keep us informed like this.
    Thanks for sharing.