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advice to farmers about interns/wwoofers

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Uploaded on Dec 16, 2010

http://www.permies.com

There are thousands of people willing to work on organic/permaculture farms for free or nearly free. Many farmers have explored this path and found it too frustrating and have elected to no longer do this. Here are two well known farmers that have had agreat success and this is their advice to farmers considering this path.

Doug Bullock and Jacqueline Freeman give advice to farmers thinking of bringing some interns/wwoofers onto their farm.

I get a slice of Doug Bullock's lunch time as he takes a break from being the guest instructor for a permaculture design course taught by Toby Hemenway. The Bullock Brothers Permaculture Homestead (http://www.permacultureportal.com) is famous for being a powerful intern magnet. Interns actually pay to go there. As a result, the Bullocks get to pick from a large pool of interns wanting to go there. And they have had excellent results with their intern program.

Doug's advice includes:

Establish your farm before you get interns.

Don't ask your interns to do just the dirty work.

A lot of interns come from a priveledged background - be prepared for that.

Keep the work interesting.

Look for interns with some skills and maturity.

If you have three or fewer interns, you shoudl include them in your family.

A hot tob, sauna or pizza oven really helps.

Jacqueline Freeman of Friendly Haven Rise Farm (http://www.friendlyhaven.com) is famous for her beekeeping skills. She tells me that in the last five years she has had more than 90 interns/wwoofers.

Some of Jacqueline's advice:

Give interns the work that matches their personality.

Praise interns when they have earned it.

Teach interns something every day.

Good food!

Fun with work. A swim on a hot day is a good idea!

To learn more about folks that want to come and work on your farm, visit the World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms at http://www.wwoof.org

Music by Jimmy Pardo

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