Fresh From the Farm: WWOOFing
WWOOFing Around at The Open Gate Farm
WWOOFing is a hoot. The Open Gate Farm became a host farm for World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms last fall and since then we have been getting 3 or 4 young folks a week emailing us from around the world to see about coming to the farm to learn how we have become a sustainable farm on small acreage. They pay their own way here, give us 35 hours a week of effort and we house, feed, give a small stipend, and teach them all we can. Pirmin from Switzerland helped build our barn. Jenny and Fay from Mainland China weeded and painted signs and persuaded us to open on Wednesdays the rest of the summer. Ann-Elise from France made us real French Crepes. Jon and Ona from Massachusetts opened our eyes to efficient land use. Anna from South Carolina made us recycle more. Each one brings their special talent that broadens us and each one leaves with a great education on what it takes to be a successful farmer today. So if you have a young person who has a bit of wandering to do to find themselves, or if you yourself are curious, sign up and give it a go! There are similar organizations in Italy, Turkey, Spain, Brazil…lots of places waiting for you! It is a great way to visit a country and come in to the lives of the common people on their back porches. Just as in Permaculture we learn that the margins are where life is most prevalent (think of how estuaries teem with life), so in life moving out to the edge of adventure will fill us with memories to carry us when we finally hit the rocking chair stage of life. If we ever do”. – Jon Stevens.