The story of the Farm Village is a miraculous one.
It started in 2019 with the purchase of a 197-acre property in Head Waters, Virginia. Through a series of remarkable events, our community came together to create a place for strengthening families.
We spent the first few months cleaning, painting, remodeling, and doing whatever it took to prepare the place for guests. (We're so grateful for those of you who came to help.)
But soon after the purchase, the pandemic struck, and we were forced to close down the property for two years, bearing the operational costs as best as we could.
As a way of getting creative, we applied for a private campground permit so we could safely host families outdoors and continue paying the bills. Our permit came through in time to host a few events, but now that winter is closing in on the mountains of Virginia, we are faced with a steep mountain of our own.
Good things are often hard things. And the Farm Village has been the source of so much goodness.
Families have been brought closer together. Mothers and fathers have been strengthened and encouraged in their roles. Children have been given the space to make unforgettable memories and run wild and free.
But after two years, as we enter this winter season, the same gifts of goodness that helped us obtain this place are the same gifts needed to sustain it.
Now, more than ever.
We have four, critical needs that could use your help.
Repairs to the Staff House
Caleb & Sarah Thatcher and their four, precious boys just moved from Arizona to be the new caretakers at the Farm Village. But when they moved into the staff house on November 1st, we discovered several problems: The dishwasher and dryer didn't work. The roof leaked. There was no ventilation in the attic. And it needed a new heat source besides the wood-burning stove. The estimated repairs come to $12,000.
A Work Truck for the Property
We recently lost the only truck we had on the property and need to replace it with a 4WD heavy-duty vehicle that can haul supplies, traverse rugged terrain, and handle icy hills in winter. This truck will equip our property manager Caleb to do his job and provide a capable workhorse for the property. Without it, we can't do the work we need to do. The estimated cost of a work truck is $13,000.
Bathhouses for the Campground
We just moved three, small cabins across the property to be converted into bathhouses, which are required by the county's campground regulations by spring. They are now sitting in place, ready to be transformed.
In a stroke of divine providence, a Wild + Free family named the Etheredges moved into the house across the road and have become a wonderful support. Jason is a former builder and ready to lead the charge on converting these cabins into beautiful, heated bathhouses. The cost for finishing them is $12,000.
Provision for the Winter
As a peaceful calm comes over the Farm Village during these cold, winter months, the property hibernates for a season. It's a beautiful place to behold in the winter. However, the operational costs won't hold off until spring. Each month, we have to continue paying our staff's salaries and the bills for electric, gas, and other utilities, even without any income to cover them. The operational costs for winter come to $12,000.
Gifts for Goodness' Sake
We could have offered "giving perks" for various levels of contributions. We've done it before and understand that it's how most fundraising is accomplished in our Kickstarter culture.
But this time, it's different.
We can't afford to diminish the impact of your gift by spending half of it on a token item.
Miracles come in times of need, not plenty. In hardship, not ease. And they are inspired by passion, love, and faith. And we're praying for another one to come along right now. Just in time for Christmas.
There is a story of a young, ancient king who accepted his new appointment with fear and trembling, as he thought about taking on the responsibility and burden of the role alone. But the written account says that "he was joined by valiant people whose hearts God had touched."
If you were to ask us, "Why should I give to the Farm Village?" we probably couldn't convince you through logic. The Farm Village, as miracle stories go, makes no earthly sense. We shouldn't even have it.
As we share our needs, we are looking for valiant people whose hearts God has touched.
People who feel compelled to give because of something within.
People who recognize a miracle story and want to be a part of it.
People who want to give for the sake of goodness.
If you've read this far, you are likely one of them.
Will you help us raise the needed funds by December 31st?
Donate at this link or the button below. You can also send a check to the address below.
We know for a fact that individuals can make a difference.
But we have seen firsthand how a community can make a miracle.
This isn’t just our story. It’s your story. And it's only just beginning.
Will you join us?
Come back to this page for updates on the campaign.
Love to you and yours,
Ben & Ainsley Arment
P.S. Giving Updates
Here updates as of 12/04/21 to the "Gifts of Goodness" campaign:
Repairs to the Staff House: $0 out of $12,000
Work Truck for the Property: $0 out of $13,000
Bathhouses for the Campground: $3,415 out of $12,000
Provision for Winter: $6,915 out of $12,000
P.P.S. Legal Stuff
The Wild + Free Farm Village legally operates as Historytellers Productions, Inc., which is a charitable non-profit organization under Section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code. Please consult with your tax adviser or the IRS to determine whether your contribution is tax-deductible.
100% of your donation will be used for the causes specified on this page. If we receive more or fewer funds for a given project than can be applied, we will use those funds to meet a similar pressing need.
Contributions are solicited with the understanding that Historytellers Productions, Inc. has complete control over the use of all donated funds.
You can make checks payable to:
Historytellers Productions, Inc.
P.O. Box 4331
Virginia Beach, VA 23454
For more information on donating, you can email us or call 703-869-9523.