The number of organic farms and volunteers joining the WWOOF network is increasing rapidly. You may be wondering why you should try WWOOF and what the benefits are. There are several possible answers, and they all have one thing in common: you’re certain to experience something different from anything else!
Reason #1: Discover a New Way of Life with WWOOFing
One thing for sure: volunteering on a farm will plunge body and soul into a life likely very different from your own:
- First of all, it’s a new environment. A new land will gift you different landscapes and perhaps a different climate. This is especially true if you live in a city, as most host locations are in the countryside. It’s a great chance to breathe in some fresh air!
- Your daily schedule is also likely to be turned upside-over: no more commute-work-sleep routine! You will work with your host for 4 to 5 hours, 5 days a week. Tasks are mostly manual work: sowing seeds, harvesting fruits and vegetables, or taking care of animals. The rest of the day is yours. In general, WWOOFers take advantage of this free time to explore the area and discover new hobbies.
- WWOOFing also involves adopting a healthy lifestyle with nutritious food and daily physical activity. Often, hosts will offer you fresh organic produce. If you help out, you can discover new ways of cooking and add many unique dishes to your personal recipe book!
- Lastly, you will undoubtedly meet many new people, including producers and other WWOOFers. With diverse backgrounds, skills, and knowledge, these human encounters promise to be very enriching.
And who knows? Perhaps this farm stay will ignite new passions and inspire a new calling in you. Indeed, WWOOF lets you experience the daily life of a farmer and determine if this way of life is meant for you. It has already changed many lives!
Reason #2: Gain New Knowledge
You don’t need to have experience in agriculture to apply to farms. Some farms may have specific requirements (usually specified in the job posting), but for the most part, beginners are welcome as long as they have a positive attitude, a willingness to learn, and a desire to help. Through WWOOF, you can gain practical experience in your area of interest. You will have the opportunity to develop skills in garden management, beekeeping, or medicinal herb harvesting by doing it yourself.
Opportunities for volunteering are plenty. There’s definitely something that will trigger your curiosity among the many available options:
- Market gardening, vegetable gardening
- Fruit and nut cultivation
- Cereal cultivation
- Poultry farming
- Pig farming
- Cattle farming
- Sheep, goat, horse farming
- Other animal farming
- Dairy farming
- Viticulture (growing grapes for wine)
- Wild foraging
- Horticulture, nursery
- Aromatic and medicinal herbs, tea
- Seed preservation and production
- Meat processing
- Vegetable and fruit preservation
- Beer, cider, wine, juice production
- Natural cosmetics
- Art and crafts
- Renewable energies
- Food self-sufficiency
- Mechanics, tools, technology
- Yoga and meditation
Even if you don’t plan to become a professional farmer, gardener, or market gardener in the future, you can certainly apply the knowledge you gain in your own garden and everyday life.
Reason #3: Travel Better and Cheaper
WWOOFing is ideal for taking your time and traveling better. WWOOF allows you to discover a new place off the beaten path. It’s easy to take the time to delve into the local culture and chat and learn from the locals. From a financial perspective, WWOOFing is also one of the most affordable ways to travel. Accommodation and food are provided, transportation costs during your stay are reduced, and often activities offered are free or very affordable.
And a significant advantage: the network is so extensive that it is now possible to WWOOF all over the world. The hardest part will probably be choosing your destination…
- What is WWOOFing?
- Where to WWOOF?
- How to WWOOF?
- Testimonial from Samantha, an experienced WWOOFer
- Testimonial from Terri and Bernard, farmers and WWOOFing enthusiasts