thirtieth July 2016 • Stephanie’s Blog • Stephanie Donaldson
In 1971 I used to be in my early twenties and dealing for a design firm in London once I picked up a replica of Time Out and noticed an advert providing weekends volunteering on natural farms. It was simply what I used to be after, I wanted to get out of the town and breathe some nation air, so I rang the quantity. That cellphone name modified my life in some ways.
Working Weekends on Natural Farms was the brainchild of Sue Coppard who has watched her thought develop from 5 folks squeezing right into a mini to go and dig potatoes to a thriving worldwide charity now often called Worldwide Alternatives on Natural Farms. WWOOF supplies natural farmers and market gardeners with invaluable free labour in return for board and lodging and provides younger folks the chance to journey to completely different nations and become involved with rural life in a approach that may by no means occur in the event that they have been following the well-trodden hole yr routes.
So how did WWOOF change my life? The very first weekend I went on was to a cottage in the course of the Ashdown Forest. Jenifer, the proprietor, wanted assist together with her vegetable backyard and as we labored I talked to her and we shortly turned – and stay – good buddies. I went on different WWOOF weekends and realised that I wished to maneuver out of London and turn out to be an natural gardener. I returned incessantly to stick with Jenifer and met her circle of buddies. A number of of us determined to arrange a commune, initially near the Ashdown Forest, earlier than six of us moved to Wales the place we purchased a farm and established a dairy herd. I grew the greens.
The farm has outlasted the commune and is owned by one of many authentic group, whereas the remainder of us went in several instructions. I married a farmer and went to reside on his household farm, the place as soon as once more I gardened organically. Once we went our separate methods I continued to work as a gardener, however with two youngsters to assist, I returned to an early love of writing and started to jot down about natural gardening. Over time I’ve written many books, together with co-authoring The Components of Natural Gardening with the Prince of Wales and till lately I used to be the backyard editor of Nation Residing journal. I now divide my time between writing freelance options for nationwide newspapers and magazines and spending time in my backyard – gardening organically. I usually ponder how completely different my life might need been if I hadn’t answered that advert. Thanks WWOOF and thanks Sue for a really good thought. www.wwoof.org.uk