WWOOF has been around for over 50 years, and in that time the separate national WWOOF organizations have developed a diversity of structures and approaches. In recent years, there came a shared realization that for WWOOF to survive in the face of technological advances and imitators, WWOOF groups had to work more closely together. These discussions began in 2000 in the UK, at the first ever WWOOF international meeting, before becoming more serious at a second event, in San Francisco in 2012.
Since that time, WWOOF groups have sought to meet at least every four years to cooperate more closely in order to strengthen the community and to protect the core values of this movement. These meetings have led to the creation of version 1 and 2 of the Common WWOOF platform, the unified WWOOF branding, and the creation of the Federation of WWOOF Organisations (FoWO), of which WWOOF Canada is a proud member.
The most recent meeting took place between September 14 and 18 in Canada near Montreal, at WWOOF Host Terra Perma. Along with WWOOF Canada staff Becky, Robin, and Caroline (who were the organizers of the event), 19 other WWOOF groups were represented. This meeting saw discussions on a number of topics, including conceptual subjects like the host application criteria and the WWOOF Mission Statement, and technical subjects, such improving the review system and a proposal for an international membership. The FoWO has a large presence at the event and a number of FoWO Committees also presented, such as the PR committee, finance committee, and IT committee.
While no big decisions were made, the meeting confirmed without a doubt that a diverse but unified WWOOF community is stronger than ever, and that even brighter days are ahead.
Below we have included a few photos from the meetings for those who have an interest. If you have any questions about the meetings or FoWO and WWOOF Canada’s involvement in either, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.