Learning and Living Organic Lifestyle with WWOOF

Sunday, November 16, 2008 by: David Hestrin
Tags: organic farming, health news, Natural News

eTrust Pro Certified

Delicious Pin It
(NaturalNews) Since 1971, people are living and learning sustainable lifestyles thanks in part to WWOOF - World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms. Founded by Sue Croppard, WWOOF was created with the goal of giving city dwellers a weekend opportunity to re-connect with nature and support organic agriculture.

WWOOF organizations publish listings of organic farms and gardens that host volunteers - providing food, housing, and in-field education in exchange for help from the volunteers. WWOOF has now become an international movement across six continents and more than fifty countries with programs ranging from weekends to seasonal and year-long stays.

Sue Croppard, founder of WWOOF, intends that through WWOOF people can get first hand experience of organic farming, give assistance to organic farmers, get into the countryside, strengthen the organic movement, form links between city and rural dwellers, and "facilitate inter-cultural understanding between people of different nationalities".

WWOOF is used by many to live sustainable lifestyles; living on a self-sufficient farm allows someone to live without driving and paying for food that was shipped from hundreds if not thousands of miles a way.

Wwoofing is also a method for low-cost traveling - since it is a volunteer arrangement, a person does not need a visa to work in a foreign country. Staying at hotels and hostels can be very expensive especially for long periods of time.

Also, those who wish to work in environmental advocacy may have trouble finding adequate work that pays enough for city-life. Through work-stay programs individuals do not have to concern themselves with rent, food, and may even improve their health through the hours of exercise under the sun.

What does Wwoofing look like?

There are over seven hundred farms affiliated with WWOOF in the USA alone and hundreds more in the world. The WWOOF listing contains wide diversity in location and farm type. If one wants to make sure they get the food they want, it is good to work at the farm that grows it.

There are farms that demand strict vegetarianism and grow nearly all their own food and there are also farms that focus on raising cattle or sheep for meat and purchase and trade for the rest of their diet with other local farmers.

Charan Springs Farm in Cambria, California grows lettuce, broccoli, brussel sprouts, mushrooms, watercress, tangelos, blood-oranges, chard, and five varieties of avocados. Charan Springs also offers medicinal hot springs. There are typically around a dozen people staying at Charan Springs.

Some farms in the tropical regions such as Hawaii and Costa Rica offer housing and organic food in exchange for as little as sixteen hours per week of work. Wwoofers are not paid for their time, but the cost might be profitable to some to eat a purely organic diet and live on a fifty acre ranch a stone`s throw from the Pacific Ocean.

Rebekah, a "wwoofer" at One Love Gardens, a farm on the Big Island of Hawaii said:

"The simplicity of life at `One Love` was brilliant: bathing in the fresh mountain stream and eating almost only what we grew, turns me on to a blessed and sacred way of being. To know that this way of life is still possible and is happening, in our crazy 21st century world opened the doors of my mind."

However, not all organic farms sound like vacations and expectations of the exchange are made clear before a person comes to volunteer. While wwoofers may work a four day sixteen hour work week on the Big Island... at a bio-dynamic farm near Grass Valley, California wwoofers are expected to wake before dawn to work fifty hours a week.

Another farm called Heaven and Earth Farm in Nevada County, California offers organic food, housing which consists of a trailer or tent, and a $50 a week stipend in exchange for forty hours of work per week. The specifics are made clear in the WWOOF guide.

What can people learn with WWOOF?

Educational opportunities vary from farm to farm and depend on season and length of stay. If one comes to a farm during harvest time the work might be limited to picking fruit or preparing vegetables to take to market. However there are many different activities that go on at any given farm.

Food preserving, planting, marketing, community living, green construction, alternative energy, animal husbandry, and permaculture are just some of the skills wwoofers can learn.

Heated in Aprovecho

"A great experience, but it can get dirty," said Elizabeth M. of Dayton Ohio, having wwoofed throughout California and Oregon. "It can be like any other co-housing situation with conflicts and house meetings, sometimes things got pretty heated in Aprovecho". Aprovecho, in Cottage Grove, Oregon, practices sustainable forestry and researches furnace design.

For some, wwoofing creates space for meditation and work on personal growth; much of the farm-work such as weeding by hand can be done by a single individual, so the farmer may instruct the wwoofer where to work and leave to work somewhere else at the same time.

"These are the survival skills of pioneers"

Says Verona Bass of her UK wwoofing experience: "Some of the most satisfying moments are when I can do lateral thinking to solve practical problems, to use 'logistics'. Sometimes the right tool is lacking, or a wheelbarrow can't go over the terrain but some sort of dragging device will work better. I think these are the survival skills of pioneers, and we may yet need to become more inventive to re-use what we have available but in altered ways."

Bass continues, "Wwoofing slows me down. I engage with the moment in a way not easily achieved anywhere else. When I've been working with my head down, and I straighten up for a while, looking over a long quiet view of hills, fields, a loch, or an estuary, I breathe in and feel privileged."

For more information visit WWOOF.ORG.

About the author

David Shlomo Hestrin is the author of The "Cure" For Blur an e-book written to help people improve their eyesight naturally by improving their relaxation and enjoyment of life. He also does health and nutritional research for the Better Earth Institute.

Get breaking news alerts on GMOs, fluoride, superfoods, natural cures and more...
Join over four million monthly readers. Email privacy 100% protected. Unsubscribe at any time.

Have comments on this article? Post them here:

comments powered by Disqus

Take Action: Support

Email this article to a friend

Permalink to this article:

Reprinting this article: Non-commercial use OK, cite with clickable link.

Embed article link: (copy HTML code below):
Most Popular
Today | Week | Month | Year

See all Top Headlines...


Now Available at

O3 Essentials OraJuvenate™
A powerful, cleansing dental cream for maximum oral/dental health.
New Cancer Solutions
Over 3 hours of content covering today’s best cancer tests, how to kill cancer cells and the best diets and exercise routines.
Freeze-Dried 100% Organic Whole Corn
Our freeze-drying method preserves taste, texture and nutrients better than any other food preservation method ever invented.
Fenix TK35 Flashlight
Tough, waterproof, extremely bright and it’s touted to throw an 800+ lumen beam more than 1,000 feet into the night.
Inca Treasure Smoothie Pack
This pack of our four most popular superfoods from South America is the perfect combo pack for smoothie lovers.
Pink Himalayan Salt
This salt delivers significant levels of magnesium, zinc and selenium, with trace levels of dozens of other elements.
Pinhole Glasses - Aviator Style
Pinhole glasses are becoming famous for helping people improve their vision without the risks of laser surgery.
Oxy-Rich Facial Serum
O3 Essentials Jojoba Oxy-Rich Facial Serum is cellular nourishment for your skin. Helps smooth fine lines while enhancing tissue elasticity.
Freeze-Dried 100% Blackberry Halves
Our freeze-dried blackberry halves are grown in Serbia under strict organic standards.

Also on NaturalNews:

Health Ranger Videos
Activist music
CounterThink Cartoons
Food documentaries
FREE Special Reports
Colloidal Silver

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Support NaturalNews Sponsors:

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Most Popular Stories

Flu shot kills 19-year-old, but vaccine industry still has total immunity against lawsuits
Here's a nutty fact: Eating more tree nuts lowers the risk of all-cause death by up to 20 percent
Six important facts you're not being told about lost Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 now clearly a government cover-up: All evidence contradicts official story
10 other companies that use the same Subway yoga mat chemical in their buns
BLM fracking racket exposed! Armed siege and cattle theft from Bundy ranch really about fracking leases
High-dose vitamin C injections shown to annihilate cancer
U.S. treating meat with ammonia, bleach and antibiotics to kill the '24-hour sickness'
USDA to allow U.S. to be overrun with contaminated chicken from China
Vaccine fraud exposed: Measles and mumps making a huge comeback because vaccines are designed to fail, say Merck virologists
Battle for humanity nearly lost: global food supply deliberately engineered to end life, not nourish it
Diet soda, aspartame linked to premature deaths in women

25 Amazing Facts About Food

This FREE downloadable report unveils a collection of astonishing and little-known facts about the food we eat very day. Click here to read it now...


Resveratrol and its Effects on Human Health and Longevity - Myth or Miracle.

Unlock the secrets of cellular health with the "miracle" nutrient Resveratrol Click here to read it now...


Nutrition Can Save America

FREE online report shows how we can save America through a nutrition health care revolution. "Eating healthy is patriotic!" Click here to read it now...

The Healing Power of Sunlight and Vitamin D

In this exclusive interview, Dr. Michael Holick reveals fascinating facts on how vitamin D is created and used in the human body to ward off chronic diseases like cancer, osteoporosis, mental disorders and more. Click here to read it now...

Vaccines: Get the Full Story

The International Medical Council on Vaccination has released, exclusively through, a groundbreaking document containing the signatures of physicians, brain surgeons and professors, all of which have signed on to a document stating that vaccines pose a significant risk of harm to the health of children. Click here to read it now...

Health Ranger Storable Organics

GMO-free, chemical-free foods and superfoods for long-term storage and preparedness. See selection at

Recommended Resources On:

Natural News trends
Health Ranger news
Natural News GMOs
Mike Adams tracker
Natural News photos
Natural News Global
Natural News in focus
Natural News connect
Natural News shocking stories
Natural News radar
Health freedom
Dr. Paul Offit

This site is part of the Natural News Network © 2014 All Rights Reserved. Privacy | Terms All content posted on this site is commentary or opinion and is protected under Free Speech. Truth Publishing International, LTD. is not responsible for content written by contributing authors. The information on this site is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice of any kind. Truth Publishing assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. Your use of this website indicates your agreement to these terms and those published here. All trademarks, registered trademarks and servicemarks mentioned on this site are the property of their respective owners.

eTrust Pro Certified Android app on Google Play

Sign up for the FREE Natural News Email Newsletter

Receive breaking news on GMOs, vaccines, fluoride, radiation protection, natural cures, food safety alerts and interviews with the world's top experts on natural health and more.

Join over 7 million monthly readers of, the internet's No. 1 natural health news site. (Source:

Your email address *

Please enter the code you see above*

No Thanks

Already have it and love it!

Natural News supports and helps fund these organizations:

* Required. Once you click submit, we will send you an email asking you to confirm your free registration. Your privacy is assured and your information is kept confidential. You may unsubscribe at anytime.