Saturday, September 13, 2014

What The F#%k Is WWOOFing- WWOOFing,

I had already done the extreme whirlwind backpacking adventure around Europe last summer, so this year I was looking to embark on a slightly different aspect of Europe. I was looking at ways I could travel minimalistic, as I don't have the funds or the energy I did last summer. When I heard about a program called WWOOFing, which stands for World Wide Opportunity on Organic Farming some years ago I always had the notion in the back of my mind that it would be a fantastic way to travel a country.
Founded in England in 1971 WWOOFing began as "Working Weekends on Organic Farms". An idea started by Sue Coppard a Londoner who saw the importance of creating an opportunity to access the countryside. Now WWOOFing is a program that gives people from all over the world the opportunity to volunteer their time to work towards organic and sustainable living. The bases of the program is that you offer your services to a farm and in return they put you up, feed and care for you. There is farms set up to choose from in over 100 countries. Anyone can apply for these farms with just a simple membership registration to the country of your choice, along with a small signup fee that protects you on an insurance bases to be working in that particular country.
The jobs and details are subjective to each farm so without any hesitation I signed up for WWOOFing Italia where I began looking at lists of farms in the Tuscan region and applying for jobs. Unfortunately I obviously wasn't the only WWOOFer to be that had the grand idea that working in one of Europe's most prestigious wine regions was a great way to spend a summer. All of my applications were rejected as farmers already had WWOOFers that were organised for this summer months in advance. Slightly disheartened I had no one to blame but myself, as per usual I had left everything until the last minute. So I began widening my search and started to look into other regions of Italy. I wanted to explore an area where I had not yet discovered, I longed for something new and exciting. That's when I began to peruse the idea of Sicily. Not knowing particularly too much about this area of Italy I decided to apply for a farm in each region. Weeks later I was successful and landed a job in the region of Caltanissetta, situated on the southern side of Sicily a close point to Africa. There I would be working alongside an Italian man Mario on his farm Il Giardino Delle Belle, which produces mainly olives and citrus trees.
Working towards a brighter, healthier and eco friendly way of living is something I believe strongly about. I can't wait to learn and discover new ways of life through the land and take on board different ways of thinking and experience an alternative way of life.

The Wanderer's Daughter xx 

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