As a young girl, I had the great fortune to be raised in the countryside of Bulgaria and learn the value of working one’s land and grow one’s own produce. Even though at the time I often complained about having to spend time helping my parents instead of playing with my friends (it was summer vacation after all), I now realize that this was a positive experience that taught me the true cost and worth of labour. Taking into consideration the literature on forced labour and exploitation I have been focusing on during the past few years, I clearly understand the importance of being able to work one’s own piece of land, however small, and be able to support one’s family. In my opinion, everyone should have the chance to work on a farm at least once in her life, especially if that person is interested in eradicating labour exploitation. And now I have learned about the perfect opportunity to achieve that.
Recently, through one of the many newsletters I subscribe to, I found out about the World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms, an organization that combines two favorite activities of mine: traveling around the world exploring different cultures and working on a farm contributing to a sustainable way of living. Apparently, this idea first made an appearance in 1971 and I can’t believe I am just now hearing about it. It puts couch surfing to shame as far as I am concerned. The hope, of course, is that I will actually have the time and opportunity to participate in this wonderful and adventurous opportunity. Maybe I should just quit school for a while and start traveling and being productive:).