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QuintaAmieiras

Host

It is very frustrating :bang: as a Host to look up Wwoofers and find all there is is a name, PLEASE PLEASE put some information about yourself so hosts have an idea about you. It will also probably mean you get more contact from hosts. : :D

Emx (not verified)

I can't believe people don't do that? I know it's volunteering, but it's still kinda applying for a job... It was the first thing I did now that I've joined.

barbeito

Host

We always give WOOFers with well written profiles priority before WWOOFers with poorly written profiles,
We always give WWOOFers with poorly written profiles priority before WWOOFers with empty profiles.

The content and formulations can really help us feel confident about what kind of a stranger we are inviting into our home. It doesn't matter if the English isn't native.
Just the fact the a WWOOFer has shown everybody the courtesy of introducing themselves to the WWOOFing community is a big plus, and sets our minds at ease.

We [b]NEVER [/b]contact WWOOFers with empty profiles.

WWOOFers with empty profiles who contact me, I regard with suspicion until they have convinced me otherwise.
Empty profiles worry me, and I also think they are just plain impolite in a network that is supposed to be friendly and mutually beneficial.

I've also noticed that blanket enquiries with no hint of specific interest in our farm are nearly always sent by WWOOFers with empty profiles.

This is the kind of thing I mean; "Hi, I really liked reading about your farm. Can I come on the 10th?"

I used to try to elicit more information from such WWOOFers, but this nearly always required me to write double the amount of text that I recieved in answer and the WWOOFer would loose interest because it was too much work to keep answering questions, questions that I would have hoped would have been answered in the WWOOFer's profile and their initial enquiry. A WWOOFer like this is not the kind of person I want to host, some-one who shows a tactic of minimum effort at my expense.

So now, when faced with such enquiries, I simply answer. "Please, fill out your profile and read our host profile."

Perhaps my expectations are unreasonable, but I will say that the WWOOFers who have approached me in an informative and confidence boosting way, are the ones who actually came to stay, and they have all been diligent and committed volunteers, as well as polite, helpful, intelligent, interested, and lovely people.

BadWolf's picture

BadWolf

WWOOFer

Hello everybody.

I've just realised now that my description was empty and I never thought before that it could be a problem.
I have wwoofed in the south of France and therefore subscribe to WWOOF France. You can put a little description on your profile, but since there weren't any internal messages system, it wasn't of any use.
So each time I ask for a placement, I describe myself in a few words and try to show why I've decided to wwoof, what I consider to be esential when sending an email to a host.

Do you think that my empty profile can still be an issue ?
I mean, I never thought about it, and I don't want to be considered being rude or anything.

Casalinho

Host

As a host, I'm looking for an informative email first and foremost.

But I do find it irritating that potential volunteers email before they've bothered to read the information we make available in our profile and website. Only by reading that can someone make an informed decision about whether we are the right farm for them to spend time at. It's a huge waste of my time dealing with questions which are answered elsewhere.

BadWolf's picture

BadWolf

WWOOFer

Mh, I see your point.
I'm going to fill my profile then.

Thanks for your answer.

QuintaAmieiras

Host

We am glad that we are not the only ones to want more information on WWoofers. Bad wolf, im sure you will get better responses if you fill out some information on your profile, good luck anyway :D

Expired user

Hi all

Some farms (such as Hästekasen) get a lot of interest and many prospective woofers write and ask if they could come.

So there obviously has to be some selection process.

I have discovered a few different traits in woofers.

1. The slightly older ones that has been to many farms and like the "lifestyle".
The level of ecology and the quality of the food can be more important for this group.
2. The total beginners often young that hardly has touched a farmtool in their life.
But they love animals and love nature.
3. Some that study things related to farming and actually see a professional life ahead within the business/lifestyle.
4. Some that are looking for "sightseeing" and some vacation with a purpose in a new country and getting it fairly cheap.
5. Some that really like the "couchsurfing" perspective where the actual meeting of different people/lifestyle is the important.
6. Some that are fleeing from social/economical/emotional problems and just want a change of air to sort out their life.
7. Some that see the woofing as work that has to be endured, and everyday wish for an easy task they can do as slow as possible hoping food will arrive soon.
8. Some that eagerly asks to start new projects and get all sweaty and one has to call them in for supper or when it gets dark.

On many farms you come and join the family, sit at the same table, use the same toilet e t c, on other places you are lodged separetly.
Some places have working schedules and fixed times and the work that has to be done is decided for many days in advance.
Some places just go with the flow and have many different projects running where woofers can choose from and when it rains everyone goes in and watch a movie.

The more open we are about who we are and what we want - the better matching.

And of course, the impersonal short letters from woofers get even shorter "no´s" in response.
If you are taking someone into your family for weeks and want to share more or less the same world view, you better choose carefully - well both sides should choose carefully.

Sebastian
Http://www.hastekasen.se

PS The woofer in the photo declared he was from the working class and working long hard hours is what he expected :-)

barbeito

Host

Cebaztian, I like your classification of motivations.

At Quinta do Barbeito we value enquiring WWOOFers' motivations in the following order (greatest interest on our part at top and least at bottom)

8 - so engaged they loose track of time
3 - budding professionals
2 - beginners we can inspire
1 - know the score
6 - escape from rat-race or bad relationships
5 - socialising
4 - cheap holiday
7 - eating for free

Clearly many WWOOFers have mixed motives. Recently an enquiring WWOOFer made it clear that 6 and 7 were his main motivations. We do need help urgently, but not that urgently.

handcramp

WWOOFer

I've only just joined so as such have only just got round to doing mine. Maybe with some people they just don't want to rush it?

I liked cebaztian's post though I don't think a lot of your points are mutually exclusive. There are a lot of things that appeal to me about wwoofing, the lifestyle, the opportunity to learn more about things I'm interested in, the opportunity to explore a new country relatively cheaply, the chance to meet new people. I think everyone has their own reasons for getting away. At the end of the day as long as people are willing to work & play hard in equal measure should people's motives for wwoofing really matter?