WWOOF Bangladesh is a totally new initiative with its seeds going back to 2008 with the visit of John Vanden Heuvel from WWOOF Canada to the IUBAT—International University of Business Agriculture and Technology in Dhaka. In February 2010, the seed is ripe for germination. Dr Mohammed Ataur Rahman is very knowledgeable about the organic farming scene in Bangladesh and will be the main contact with the full support of Professor Dr M Alimullah Miyan, Founder and Vice Chancellor of IUBAT. The WWOOF Bangladesh headquarters will be established here. John Vanden Heuvel (from WWOOF Canada) is the guiding person to bring WWOOF Bangladesh into its reality.
WWOOF stands for World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms. It provides opportunities for the organic farm producers to share information, knowledge, techniques and cultural practices among the volunteers and members of the Organic Farming community around the world. The members of the WWOOF are the WWOOFers, exchange their experiences on organic farming learn new things and also contribute knowledge from/to the other regions as guest WWOOFer and Hosts. WWOOFing is solely a volunteer mechanism to reestablish organic farming worldwide for a sustainable agriculture and also for keeping a better world for the future lives and mankind.
In short, WWOOF is an exchange: in return for your help on organic farms, gardens and homesteads, you receive meals, a place to sleep, and a practical insight into organic growing methods.
WWOOF was started in 1971 in England by Ms Sue Coppard, a London Secretary, with the idea to work on organic farming on weekends to provide access for herself to the countryside for supporting the organic movement. Her idea started with a trial working weekend, which she arranged for four people at the bio-dynamic farm at Emerson College in Sussex through a contact in the Soil Association. The weekend was a great success and things gathered momentum very quickly and the organization was called “Working Weekends on Organic Farms”, WWOOF. Soon many more organic farmers and smallholders were willing to take people keen to work on this basis (WWOOFers). It seemed that many people were just desperate to get into the countryside. Hosts and workers made new friends and enjoyed the experience of working in common in an exchange of assistance and knowledge. However, the name “Working Weekends on Organic Farms” was changed to “Willing Workers On Organic Farms”. But eventually with the worldwide recognition it was renamed as “World Wide Opportunities On Organic Farms” in 2000 to resolve the confusion caused by the word ‘work’ which usually meant for migrant workers to differentiate from the volunteers of organic farms, the WWOOFers.
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