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EC Canada: English + Farmstay

Farmstay offers an opportunity for students to enjoy the countryside and experience farm life. The Farmstay Programme gives international students the opportunity to do this, and to get a “natural” Canadian experience.



Min. required level of Pre-intermediate level English or French.

Course Duration
2 - 4 weeks of farm work (with an EC course of minimum 1 week duration)
Available In

What can you expect on this course?

With this Farmstay programme, students are placed for a 2 to 4 week period on a farm in the wilderness of BC, Alberta, Ontario or Quebec. There, they live with a family and assist in the day-to-day up-keep of a family farm.  Students get to see the great outdoors, get up close and personal with animals, and try Canadian food, fresh out of the ground.

Farmstay gives students an added opportunity to practice their English or French in a real social context.

Sample Placements:

Vegetable / Fruit Farm: Small farms specialising in mixed vegetables or fruit, includes orchards.

Arts/Crafts/Artisanal Food Processing: Farms specialising in production of small craft foods or craft products like certain types of jam, or specialized lamb, or heirloom vegetables.

Mixed Farms (animals and produce): These are typical “family” farms that students would be used to seeing on TV programmes and movies.  They include a small collection of animals, and a medium sized patch of crops.

Ranches: Cowboy placements, usually on a small guest ranch, occasionally done on larger cattle ranches. Students must have previous experience with horses.
Vineyards: Small hobby vineyards producing regional wines.
Sample Work:
  • Gardening
  • Harvesting
  • Caring and Feeding for Animals
  • Cleaning / Maintenance
  • Household accommodation duties
Please note that every farmstay placement experience is labour-intensive and requires the student to be physically fit and active.



  • Low-Intermediate level of English or French (before placement programme)
  • 18 years and above
  • Students must be physically able to perform farm work.  This includes being able to lift at least 20 kg.
  • No allergies to animals, wild grass or pollen
  • Application for Farmstay Programme must be received at least 6 weeks in advance of desired start date.
  • Step 1: Student completes application indicating type of placement and length of stay.  Student must make more than 1 choice of farm type.
  • Step 2: Consultation with the student.
  • Step 3: Student is matched with a farm and is sent a Farmstay Profile and a bus ticket (if within province) with instructions .

Placement Fee:  $900.00 CAN

Other key points:

  • This is unpaid work
  • Students require a visitor visa
  • Includes room and full-board accommodation
  • Includes one-way bus transportation from city to host farm within province.  For any placements out of province (Rural Ontario and St Lawrence Valley Quebec) , students will need to pay for their own transport.
  • Placements available in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver
  • Placements are not available in December and January
  • Placements include accommodation for the duration of the placement, accommodation during English course is not included unless otherwise booked
  • All placements are isolated, far from cities, and students will not be able to commute from a city to their farmstay
  • Minimum placement is 2 weeks
  • Maximum placement is 4 weeks
  • 15 to 25 hours per week
  • Students must be registered at least 6 weeks in advance of their placement start date
  • No maximum number of study weeks