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A journal of social practice & professional engagement for the Antioch community

Awakening the Spirit: Skunk Birkemeier ’25 at as Therapeutic Assistant at Camphill Village Kimberton Hills in Kimberton, Pennsylvania

For the past month and a half and for the duration of the spring semester, I have been working at Camphill Village Kimberton Hills for my first Antioch College co-op. In my time at the college, I plan to study psychology with additional interest in English literature as well as communications. I strongly believe that these topics coincide with one another and strive to explain the fundamental connection between these subject matters. My particular focus on psychology landed me in this lovely live-in therapeutic community for adults with developmental disabilities. 

Camphill Kimberton is dedicated to their mission of being an integrated community where adults with developmental disabilities live a life of dignity, equality, and purpose. In acting out this statement, Camphill provides a variety of workshops where residents and coworkers work alongside one another to accomplish tasks and creative projects which are either sold online at or crafted as personal gifts. At this website you can find products from fiber arts, teas and herbal blends from the herb garden, the weavery, and woodworking.   

 Among the products we sell are farm fresh dairy and produce. Using sustainable, biodynamic farming practices, these products are distributed amongst the village and sold off to private buyers and local businesses such as Kimberton Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. The community is sustained through our collective efforts, and our produce is quite honestly a joy to cook with, complimenting every meal wonderfully.

In addition to workshop assistance, I also tend to my residence house: doing various household tasks, cooking meals, and being present and engaged with the residents. In Pfeiffer House, I have been trying new lunch and dinner recipes as well as showing off my baking skills, which I thoroughly enjoy. My recipes have always gotten a stunning review from the rest of the house, but I think the showstopper thus far has been my apple fritters.

While cleaning, cooking, farming, and pursuing artistic endeavors, I have found time to express my passion for education. With assistance from the head of the Adult Education Program, I was able to reintroduce these classes and lead my own lecture. Within the luxurious library of Helios House, I taught a small group of residents and coworkers about the Lenapé, the indigenous people whose land we currently reside on. 

In embracing this community and becoming a valued part of it, I have been embracing various aspects of my own being. My time here has been transformative in a sense and in speaking to other coworkers, they seem to feel similarly. I believe this is in part due to the connectivity with nature. Disconnected from external pressures, the body and mind are able to connect, and the spirit awakens.

 To learn more about Camphill Village Kimberton Hills, visit their website at 


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