“Bield” is a resonant old Scottish word rich in meaning, it may describe a place of shelter and refuge or an environment of protection and rest.

The Bield at Blackruthven was established in 1997 as a spiritual retreat.

Project language: English

Work start: 2016-06-13
Work end: 2016-09-30
Duration: You need to stay at least 6 weeks but preferably 8 weeks.
Application info: Follow th link below for more information.

Who can become voluntary staff with The Bield at Blackruthven?

  • Anyone who is 18 years of age or
  • Applications are welcome from all who are willing and able to participate fully in our common life of work and
  • Please note that in order to be a volunteer you must be able to speak and understand English well enough to function in a busy working
  • Please see our web site before considering volunteering – bieldatblackruthven.org.uk.

When can I come?

  • The volunteer programme runs from July to
  • The more flexible you can be in your times, the better chance you will have of being offered a place.

How long are the Voluntary Staff Positions for?

  • You must be able to stay for a minimum of 6 weeks but preferably for 8

What jobs can I do?

  • Work in The Bield Steading – housekeeping and general kitchen
  • Work on the Estate – grounds/general maintenance and garden/horticultural
  • Work at the Smallholding – assisting adults with learning disabilities to grow organic vegetables for The
  • You are not expected to carry out any tasks unless you feel you can do them in a safe and competent way and have been given sufficient instruction.

How much am I expected to work?

  • At The Bield you will work for 8 hours a day, normally starting at
  • You will have 2 full days off a week plus breaks in the morning, afternoon and at
  • You will need to be flexible. Sometimes you may be expected to work early in the morning or late in the evening or at
  • You may be asked to work in another area where the need is greater, even if it may not be what you were expecting to do.
  • Volunteers use their free time not only to sleep and rest, but also to enjoy all the facilities at The Bield (pool, tennis courts, art room, labyrinth, walks) as long as you take others into consideration, or exploring the local area and the Scottish countryside

– there are bicycles you may borrow, local buses and occasional lifts from staff.

What do I receive as a volunteer?

  • We do not pay volunteers, as that is not permitted by the
  • All volunteers receive a weekly allowance for their expenses of £30 in
  • All volunteers receive free lodging; food is provided during the working week but volunteers are expected to self-cater when The Bield is closed. You will get provisions from the Steading kitchen and choose fresh produce from the gardens /
  • UK volunteers can claim the equivalent of an Open Return bus fare from anywhere within the UK. Volunteers from other countries can claim the equivalent of an Open Return bus fare from their port of entry in the UK to The
  • Volunteers from abroad can also claim up to £100 towards the cost of their airfare – this is paid on arrival in cash.

Where will I live?

  • At The Bield, voluntary staff normally stay in a shared
  • It can accommodate up to 4 people in 2
  • You will be expected to share a bedroom with other staff and take an active part in keeping all common areas clean and tidy. It has its own lounge, bathroom and


Do I need to be a Christian to work at The Bield?

  • The Bield believes God is relevant in all parts of our lives – work, worship and recreation interweave into a common
  • Whilst worship is a central part of this common life together, we do not expect all our voluntary staff to profess a belief, but to be in sympathy with our aims and
  • Volunteers are most welcome to come to our 9 am morning and 5 pm evening services. Tuesday Morning Prayers are specifically for Staff and
  • During an open weekend our Communion Service is on Sunday at 9:30

What happens if we get sick?

  • UK residents are entitled to full NHS cover, and prescriptions in Scotland are
  • Citizens of other EU countries, Norway, Iceland, and Switzerland must bring a European Health Insurance Card with them – they will be entitled to free medical treatment both from the local Doctor and from
  • Citizens of other countries must ensure that they have private medical insurance. The Bield will pay for any prescription charge but not other medical

Can I bring my children?

  • We do not normally take volunteers with children. This is partly because our volunteer accommodation is at a premium, but it is also because volunteers are here to do a full time job, often involving early and late shifts and there would be no one to be responsible for looking after your children while you were working; and finally, because it would be difficult for you to have any quality time with your

Is there an opportunity to develop our own spiritual growth?

  • We recognise that there is a need for staff to share and discuss their own inner and spiritual
  • There is a priest, spiritual director and counsellor on the staff at The
  • Should the need arise they can arrange a suitable time with you on an individual

What do we wear?

  • In Scotland the weather can be very changeable, so a variety of clothes is advisable

e.g. summer clothes, swimwear, light footwear, suitable warm clothes, thick socks, waterproof jacket and trousers, walking boots, hat & gloves.

  • For work, wear what you feel comfortable wearing – protective jackets and steel toe- capped clogs are provided for the household team and boiler suits and steel toe- capped boots for the grounds/gardens
  • You must wear the protective clothing / equipment that you are given for a specific job.

What should we bring?

  • Bring your own toiletries – there is a major supermarket
  • Bedding and towels are

If this opportunity interests you please apply at the following link: