VOLUNTEER IN AUSTRALIA
Join 1000s of other WWOOFers (volunteers) experiencing Australia with the locals.
Travelling around Australia for 12 months, volunteering 4-6 hours per day on a host farm, getting your meals and accommodation provided.
WWOOF is a worldwide movement linking volunteers with organic farmers and growers to promote cultural and educational experiences based on trust and non-monetary exchanges, helping to build a sustainable global community.
What you will
Organic, Bio-dynamic and/or Permaculture methods
The importance of sustainability
Where your food comes from
About life in Australia living with locals
Practice your English conversation skills
Join a 5,000+ online Community
Connect to Host Farms and other WWOOFers on the Website or Mobile App.
Membership features …
Create your own unique Profile, showcasing your enthusiasm, skills and personality to Host farms.
Found a potential Host Farm? Save them to your Favourites and access them online or offline.
Images & Video
Upload your favourite pics to your Profile gallery, or show who you are with Videos.
Download our free Mobile App and search for Hosts, or connect with other WWOOFers in Australia.
Use the intuitive Map Search and find Hosts or other Volunteers nearby your location or anywhere in Australia.
Read the Reviews of Hosts and other Volunteers, or leave your own Reviews of Host Farms you’ve stayed with.
WWOOFers bring more enthusiasm & happiness
We have been host members of WWOOF for 1 year now and have had 4 amazing ladies stay with us and another arriving this week. It took some time for us to decide to join the… Read more “WWOOFers bring more enthusiasm & happiness”
A beautiful cultural understanding
Thank you for this wonderful experience for our two daughters – being surrounded by multicultural visitors, they have developed a beautiful cultural understanding. Besides, we were lucky to build really strong friendship with some of… Read more “A beautiful cultural understanding”
Search for Hosts using our Website or Mobile App
Connect with Host Farms directly or team up with other Volunteer WWOOFers and share your experiences.
More about WWOOFing ...
WWOOF Australia was established in 1981 and is Australian owned and run. It is part of a worldwide WWOOF volunteer and cultural exchange movement.
Each country operates independently, with its own lists of WWOOFers and WWOOF hosts. Volunteer membership is for 6 or 12 months and includes personal accident insurance.
Host profiles provide members with names, contact details and a description of each host property, as well as the work to be done and what kind of accommodation and meals are provided.
Our hosts practice sustainable land care: organics, bio-dynamics or permaculture.
Choose the host that interests you, contact them and offer to help out. Volunteer for 4 to 6 hours each day and in return your host will provide all of your meals and snacks and accommodation, often in their home. Your food will often have been grown on the property.
WWOOFing is a hands-on way of learning about organic farming and environmental rehabilitation, but that’s not all.
Leave the tourist trail and see the real Australia, visit unique places off the beaten track, meet the locals, save on travel expenses, add skills to your resume, improve your English and offset your carbon travel footprint at the same time!
WWOOFing is one of the most eco-friendly ways to travel.
Join in 3 Easy Steps!
Joining WWOOF Australia is as easy as 1, 2, 3 - gain access to 1,500+ Organic Host Farms and experience Australia as the locals do.
Sign Up for $70
Join for 12 months $70, or a six month membership for $50.
Create Your Profile
Totally talk about yourself, your skills, your likes and contact details.
Search for Hosts via a Map Search, Skill Search, or view the full List.
WWOOFer Volunteer Pricing
Payment via: Credit Card, Paypal or Direct Deposit
12 month Plan
SINGLE Membership Only.
All WWOOFers are checked by Hosts.
Six month Plan
SINGLE Membership Only.
All WWOOFers are checked by Hosts.
FAQs and Legal Stuff!
Visa and Insurance information as well as some History and background as to what WWOOF is all about.
What does my WWOOFer Insurance cover?
WWOOFer insurance covers volunteer members if they have an accident while they are WWOOFing (Volunteering) on registered WWOOF Host properties within Australia.
More details ...
You will find details of the WWOOF insurance policy below, including the policy number and contact details in the event of needing to put in a claim.
In all cases WWOOF Australia will need to verify with the insurance company that you are a registered WWOOFer on a registered WWOOF Host property at the time of the incident relating to the claim and the Host will need to verify that the accident occurred during a WWOOFing activity.
For more information read the Product Disclosure Statement and WWOOF Schedule. These documents are in Adobe Acrobat PDF format. You will need the Acrobat viewer to view these files, this can be downloaded free of charge from Adobe Adobe.
Note: This policy is very basic, up to a maximum cover of AUD$10,000.00, and would be unlikely to cover all medical expenses in the event of a serious accident. It does not cover WWOOFers in the event of illness so it is a vital that WWOOFers also take out some form of medical insurance to cover illness.
We strongly advise WWOOFers to ensure they have adequate Travel insurance and medical cover to suit their needs. The cost of ambulance transport and hospital admissions in Australia is VERY expensive. WWOOF insurance policy only covers ambulance transport up to $3,000, and a total claim of $10,000.
Air ambulance transport can cost tens of thousands of dollars so it is vital to have separate additional insurance cover for this. Some WWOOF properties are remote or isolated and air ambulance maybe necessary to get to a hospital.
WWOOFer INSURANCE CERTIFICATE
Policy reference # 0014699 Aon Risk Services Australia Ltd Phone: 02 9253 7000
WWOOF Pty Ltd, in Association with Aon Risk Services Australia Ltd certify that the following insurance cover has been paid for by WWOOF volunteer members, who are covered against accidental injury for a period of their membership as below:
Cover is applicable only to accidents occurring to registered WWOOF members while engaged in WWOOFing activity on a registered WWOOF Host property including direct travel to and from such voluntary work.
Policy covers: PERSONAL ACCIDENT only, EXCLUDES sickness or illness
Policy Limit $10,000 Maximum Payout
- Death (Capital Benefits) - $10,000
- Weekly Benefit (**Restricted Cover for those aged 60 and over) -$500 (**max 85%)
- Broken Bones - $1,500 maximum
- Weekly Domestic Help* (non income earners) - $500
- Weekly Student Tutorial Benefit* (non income earners) - $500
- Non Medicare medical expenses (Australian Residents) - $10,000
- Non Medicare medical expenses (Non-Australian Residents) - $5,000
- Home/Car Renovation* - $10,000
- Out of pocket expenses (non income earners) - $1,500
- Emergency Transport - $3,000
- Funeral Expenses - $10,000
- Pharmaceutical Benefits - $1,000
*On the advice of a qualified medical practitioner.
Cover is only within Australia, and ceases when a person covered under the WWOOFer’s policy ceases WWOOFing activity, or returns overseas (home).
For new Australian Residents, cover for medical expenses incurred in Australia and ongoing due to their injury, once back in their home country, will be covered up to the policy limit where insurers can legally provide this cover.
104 weeks (**but reduced for those aged 60 and over)
$50 for each and every claim
- Any sickness/illness related injury or condition or pre-existing injuries
- Any accident which results from being under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Flying in an aircraft other than as a passenger in an aircraft licensed to carry passengers
Training for or participating in professional sport of any kind
- Intentional self injury or criminal act
- There is no cover under this policy for any loss, damage, liability, event, injury or sickness which is covered under any other insurance policy (e.g travel insurance), health or medical scheme or Act of Parliament or is payable by any other source
Any occurrence giving rise to a claim will need to be attested to by a Host (as to when and where it happened) and be notified to Speciality Claims, Aon Risk Services on 02 9253 7000 as soon as possible, quoting the WWOOF/Aon Personal Accident Policy reference # 0014699.
Claim forms include a Physician's statement which must be filled in by the attending Doctor and are available from WWOOF Pty Ltd by e-mail email@example.com
This document has all the Product Disclosure information about the WWOOFer Volunteer Accident Insurance Policy.
Please read it.
What is a WWOOFer?
A WWOOFer is a volunteer WWOOF member.
How do I pay?
We offer payment by most credit cards, PayPal or Bank Deposit (EFT).
If you pay by credit card or PayPal, your Account and Profile are active immediately.
If you pay by Bank Deposit (EFT), your access is restricted until your payment clears.
If you live outside of Australia and wish to pay by Bank Deposit, please contact WWOOF Australia for alternative arrangements, as overseas banking fees are expensive.
Which Visa do I need to WWOOF?
You must arrange your entry visa to Australia before you join WWOOF. WWOOF Memberships will not be refunded if you cannot obtain an entry visa. WWOOF Pty Ltd and WWOOF hosts cannot assist with travel costs or visa applications, so please do not ask.
The Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP, formerly DIAC) has information about visas, these are some visas that allow WWOOFing:
- Working Holiday Visa (417)
- Working Holiday Visa (462)
- Visitor Visa - Tourist Stream (subclass 600) *see note below
- Electronic Travel Authority (subclass 601), *see note below
- eVisitor (subclass 651),
- Student Visa,
*Visitor Visas (Tourist)
On Visitor visas any work must be genuinely voluntary and must be work that would not otherwise be undertaken by an Australian resident. This principle also applies for those intending to undertake WWOOFing with commercial operators (such as large organic beef farms). WWOOFers undertaking work with commercial organisations risk being in breach of Visitor visa conditions which do not permit work. The Visitor visa does not offer the wide scope of options that are available to those who are holders of Working Holiday or Work and Holiday visas which permit work.
WWOOFers travelling on Tourist Visas should join WWOOF as part of their holiday, not the main reason for it. In most cases these WWOOFers want to be doing something useful, learning about organics and permaculture and getting to know some real Australians.
This is much better suited to the pace and lifestyle on non-commercial WWOOF Host properties, where they are generally treated as part of the family. They still have all of their meals and accommodation but the hours are generally less formal and as the property is not generating an income the Hosts are far less likely to be paying someone to help around the property.
There are a large number of non-commercial and hobby farm WWOOF hosts in the program to choose from.
DIBP say this about Visitor Visas - Tourist stream:
This visa lets you:
- have a holiday or visit family and friends in Australia
- your main purpose in visiting Australia is tourism, and any voluntary work remains incidental to tourism,
- the work involved would not otherwise be undertaken, in return for wages, by an Australian resident, or
- the work is genuinely voluntary and no remuneration is received in return for the activities. It is acceptable to receive meals, accommodation and/ or reimbursement of out-of-pocket living expenses in return for voluntary work.
For all of the above visas, please see the DIBP website for conditions.
See the Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship Website or if you need to talk to someone, by phone, Monday – Friday 8.30am – 4.30pm on 131 881
WWOOFing (Volunteering) IS allowed on ALL Working Holiday Visas
The Department of Immigration and Border Protection say: “In recognition of the many legitimate and worthwhile agencies that employ volunteer workers to deliver valuable community services, Working Holiday visa holders will still be able to perform volunteer work should they wish to do so. The work will simply not count towards eligibility for a second visa.”
IMPORTANT NOTE: DIBP change the rules from time to time about what activities are allowed on these visas, it is important to confirm with DIBP that the type of visa you apply for does allow volunteering in exchange for food and accommodation. WWOOF does NOT have any influence over DIBP, and they do not advise WWOOF if they alter the Rules, the most current information is always on their website www.border.gov.au
How do l join WWOOF?
- Join WWOOF online at wwoof.com.au for instant access to WWOOF hosts all over Australia.
- Join WWOOF by phone, call WWOOF 03-5155-0218 during Office hours 9:00am to 4:30pm Monday to Friday, have your credit card handy, or ask for our bank details and we will activate your membership as soon as your payment clears our account.
- Join WWOOF by mail: Pay by credit card, cheque or money order (payable to WWOOF Pty Ltd) please mail to WWOOF Pty Ltd 2166 Gelantipy Road, W Tree, Vic., 3885 with your full name, phone number, email and mailing address, and a copy of your photo ID.
- Join WWOOF at an agent/sales outlet near you or on arrival at a host property for the same price as joining directly with WWOOF Australia. You will need photo ID: passport or drivers license.
Membership fees are $70 for 12 months or $50 for 6 months, if an optional WWOOF Book is required, please add $20 plus $5 for domestic postage or $15 international postage.
What does my WWOOF Membership Include?
- Support from the friendly staff at WWOOF Australia by phone during Office hours or by email.
- Full access to over 1500 WWOOF hosts Australia wide.
- All meals and accommodation in exchange for your help on WWOOF host Properties Australia wide
- Volunteer Accident Insurance* is included in WWOOFer memberships.
- Full access to the WWOOF Website and App.
- Advertise on the WWOOF Noticeboard for a host or travel companion
- Message Hosts or WWOOFers from the website or App
- Opportunities to learn practical skills.
- Meet real Australians, spend time being part of their lives.
*We strongly advise WWOOFers to ensure they have adequate Travel insurance and medical cover to suit their needs. Please see WWOOFer Insurance info for details.
How long do I have to work?
WWOOFers volunteer for 4 to 6 hours each day* for their host in exchange for all their meals, accommodation, social engagement and the host shares their knowledge and organic techniques.
Hours can be flexible and differ from host to host as well as from season to season. Many hosts are happy to arrange WWOOFers hours to allow for days off and time for sight seeing.
*A maximum of 38 hours in any 7 days.
What type of work do WWOOFers do?
WWOOFers mostly help with outdoor farming and gardening type work. This varies from host to host and from season to season. It can include all aspects of plant and animal care, fencing, general farm maintenance, building, preserving food, packing produce, helping out at markets. Generally WWOOFers help out with whatever the host is doing at the time of their visit.
Do I get paid?
There is no monetary exchange between hosts and WWOOFers.
Hosts and WWOOFers undertake to support each other, as friends and extended family do.
WWOOF is a network of large and small organic, bio-dynamic and permaculture hosts and volunteers who help them.
Will WWOOF Sponsor my Trip?
WWOOF and WWOOF hosts do not sponsor volunteers or assist with travel or visa costs. WWOOFers are responsible for their own visa and travel costs as well as any personal needs.
What age do I have to be to WWOOF?
Anyone over 18 and of any nationality - including Australian can join WWOOF Australia.
If you wish to join WWOOF Australia and you are under 18, you must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian, who will also need to join WWOOF.
WWOOFers require average physical and mental fitness, maturity and independence to participate in the program. WWOOF is generally unsuitable for persons suffering from psychiatric or psychological conditions.
Please contact WWOOF and/or your Medical practitioner to discuss if in doubt.
How will a host know I am a WWOOFer?
Each volunteer needs their own WWOOF membership. Hosts will check membership details (in WWOOF App, WWOOF Book or WWOOF website) and photo ID on arrival and record this in their guestbook.
Hosts will arrange WWOOFer membership on arrival for non-members, checking Photo ID and collecting payment, or by assisting them to join online.
How are complaints handled?
WWOOFers are a guest of their host. The 'House Rules' will differ at each host and must be respected. Members refusing to abide by the WWOOF Guidelines or the 'House Rules' of the host can be asked to leave.
WWOOFers with a complaint about a host, and hosts with a complaint about a WWOOFer should contact firstname.lastname@example.org in writing with their concerns so they can be followed up. All complaints are taken seriously and are dealt with sensitively and confidentially.
Complaints must be in writing and include:
- WWOOF members name, membership number and contact details. (We treat this as confidential)
- Host’s or WWOOFers name and membership number.
- Dates of the visit.
- Details of the issue.
WWOOF will contact the member (host or WWOOFer) to request details of recent WWOOF visits. We will ask these other members about their visits. At WWOOF’s discretion the matter will be discussed to prevent future issues, or if very serious, we may immediately cancel the membership. If a matter is discussed and we have a further complaint of a similar nature the member will be given a final warning. A third complaint will result in cancellation of membership.
WWOOF does not condone the breaking of State and/or Federal laws. WWOOF reserves the right to cancel any member’s registration immediately if we believe their actions may bring the name of the WWOOF program into disrepute. In the unlikely event of a very serious issue, we recommend the Police are contacted immediately (if appropriate). WWOOF liaise with Police in these cases. The WWOOF member concerned will be temporarily suspended during the investigation.
Can I go WWOOFing with Children?
Many host farms welcome children by arrangement - please check the host's profile. The most important point to make is that - please - never WWOOF with children except by prior arrangement with the Host.
WWOOFing is about helping the host, and if you are also looking after a child then the help you can give may be limited. Children must be supervised at all times as farms can be dangerous places.
Hosts will be feeding and accommodating several people in exchange for one person's help, so a contribution to the cost of food will often be welcome. Bringing any special food your child likes can be a good idea.
Some host farms are in remote places and those with children welcome the company of others. Being remote means that you need to carry everything your child might need since popping down to the local shop won't always be possible.
Where else in the world can I WWOOF?
To WWOOF in other countries, you will need a separate WWOOF membership for any country that has a National WWOOF Group. For contact details of WWOOF groups and information about WWOOFing in countries without a WWOOF Group, see WWOOF International.
WWOOFing in countries that do not have a national WWOOF organization
Lists of Independent WWOOF hosts are available from WWOOF International,
Countries with a national WWOOF group are listed on the WWOOF International website along with links to their websites and other contact information. In these countries, we strongly recommend that you join the group in the country that you are going to.
The Green Compass is an online magazine that focuses on international volunteering and sustainable living. The Green Compass reports from international volunteer schemes where we provide global perspectives into a sustainable and delicious way of life.
Be sure to join a legitimate WWOOF Group, there are many websites publishing WWOOF host details which have been pirated from outdated WWOOF lists from all over the world. Most of these lists include deleted Hosts who have been removed from WWOOF programs for bad behaviour and other reasons. WWOOF hosts will want to check your WWOOF Membership against your passport or other photo ID, if you contact Hosts from one of these fraudulent websites you will not be issued with a WWOOF membership or WWOOFing insurance and hosts will not accept you.
Our organisation is committed to respecting the privacy of your personal information. It is bound by a set of National Privacy Principles that establish the benchmark for how personal information should be handled.
WWOOF Pty Ltd. has embraced these principles as part of standard operating procedures. This means is that all personal information that enters WWOOF Pty Ltd. is dealt with in a uniform manner and the highest regard is taken for maintaining its security at all times.
If you are concerned our organisation may have handled your personal information inappropriately, please contact our Privacy Officer on (03) 5155 0218 or by email.
000 is the number for all emergency services in Australia. An operator will connect you to police, ambulance or the fire brigade. You should only call 000 in an emergency.
For mobile phones the number to call in emergencies is 112.
WWOOFers have access to WWOOF hosts. Host contact details are only to be used for arranging WWOOF visits. Any other use is in breach of Australian Privacy Laws.
On arrival at a host:
- Provide proof of Membership and photo ID
- Record details in host Guest-books
- Hosts will arrange membership for non-members
- Memberships are not transferable. One person per membership
- Minimum stay = 2 nights. Longer as agreed with hosts. If host profile is not accurate, please advise WWOOF. WWOOFers may leave if conditions are unacceptable, but must advise host.
- WWOOFing is a voluntary, non-monetary exchange. 4 to 6 hours volunteer work daily in exchange for food and accommodation. Maximum of 38 hours in 7 days. This is flexible, check with hosts about work patterns.
- Work varies from host to host. WWOOFing may include weeding, making compost, gardening, planting, harvesting, building, fencing, environmental works, feeding and caring for animals.
- Hosts must not involve WWOOFers in the use of chemicals.
Hospitality work, waitress and child-care are not acceptable WWOOFing work.
- WWOOFers require average physical and mental fitness, maturity and independence. WWOOF is generally unsuitable for persons suffering from psychiatric or psychological conditions. Please contact WWOOF and your Medical practitioner to discuss if in doubt.
- Contacting hosts:
- Hosts welcome WWOOFers into their homes, they are not backpacker hostels.
- Phone hosts around noon or before 9pm, local (hosts) time.
- Most hosts do not respond to bulk emails or text messages.
- Always book ahead. Inform hosts immediately if plans change, or you are late. Many hosts travel long distance to pick WWOOFers up. Exchange mobile phone numbers when arranging to meet in case of problems.
- Children and pets are only accepted on host properties by arrangement.
- WWOOFers not following these guidelines and/or host House Rules may be asked to leave.
WWOOF Pty Ltd may cancel a WWOOF membership if the WWOOF guidelines are not followed.
NOTE: WWOOF does not condone the breaking of Australian laws. WWOOF will cancel a WWOOF membership immediately if the member’s actions may bring the WWOOF program into disrepute.
Ask your host what they think you will need beforehand – some hosts provide work clothes, others don't so it is better to ask.
- Hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, boots, gloves and torch are always useful.
- A phone card and internet dongle. Telstra has the best mobile coverage in rural areas.
- Always prepare before you leave, check Google before you embark on this incredible journey so you are equipped for the conditions.
Come Open Minded
- Bring along your sense of humour, it is a prerequisite for WWOOFing.
- You will be working along side your host and sometimes it can be hard work but a lot of fun.
- Remember to ask before you arrive what work will be involved so you fully understand what is expected from you and what skills may be useful.
- Organic farming involves weeding and physical labour, mostly volunteers work outside
- Communication is everything.
- Be honest with your host, particularly if something is bothering you.
- Advise the host immediately if plans change and you wish to leave early, giving time for their host to find alternative assistance.
- Talk things through and find solutions.
Be Tidy and Respectful
- Ask permission. Do not raid the refrigerator or pantry, use telephone or internet* without asking.
- Food is provided by hosts. You may need to bring your own special dietary food.
- Offer to cook your favorite meal for your host. Keep the living area tidy, clean up yourself and help with meals or washing up.
- Try to understand that hosts are all different, have different house rules, behaviours and expectations.
- Respect these rules and learn from each different cultural experience.
- Water, gas and electricity can be very expensive in rural areas. Short showers can be enough to get clean, water is often a precious resource on farms.
*Remember to always ask permission before using their Internet. Many hosts rely on satellite Internet with very small data plans, (downloading a movie can use a month's data allowance). We are sure you will conserves energy and other resources on the host property.
WWOOF (Willing Workers on Organic Farms) started in England in 1972 when the first WWOOFers spent a weekend helping on an organic farm in exchange for their keep. The organisation was initially called Working Weekends on Organic Farms, but was changed to Willing Workers on Organic Farms in 1982 after people asked “why only weekends?”
Today there are over 55 WWOOF groups all over the world, including Switzerland, Germany, France, Japan, UK, USA, Austria, Korea, New Zealand and Canada. All WWOOF groups are independent, but operate in a similar way, by putting people into contact with each other. Throughout the world the WWOOF philosophy is the same; WWOOF hosts provide food and lodging to travellers and students in exchange for between 4 and 6 hours work per day.
Lionel Pollard started WWOOF in Australia in 1981, over the last 36 years WWOOF has grown into an organisation employing 3 people, publishing a directory with over 1500 host farms and properties all over Australia. The WWOOF Australia App (launched in August 2015) and the Australian WWOOF Book provide host contact details, a description of each property, the work to be done, accommodation and meal situations. WWOOFers simply browse through the hosts, choose a place they would like to go and contact the host to arrange a mutually suitable time to visit. The choice may be based on geography (close to a route they are travelling); philosophy (such as bio-dynamic farming practices); cultural (many of our hosts speak other languages as well as English) or it may just sound like an interesting place to visit. WWOOFers live and work with the host families in the same way as relatives and friends do when they visit.
For contact details of WWOOF groups and information about WWOOFing in countries without a WWOOF Group, see WWOOF International.
WWOOFer Volunteer Pricing
Payment via: Credit Card, Paypal or Direct Deposit
12 month Plan
SINGLE Membership Only.
All WWOOFers are checked by Hosts.
Six month Plan
SINGLE Membership Only.
All WWOOFers are checked by Hosts.
Host Farm info
FAQs & Help