VOLUNTEER IN AUSTRALIA
Join 1000s of other WWOOFers (volunteers) experiencing Australia with the locals.
Travelling around Australia, volunteering for *4-6 hours per day maximum while living and learning on a Host farm.
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.
* Please note: WWOOFers help for a maximum of 38 hours in any 7 days, 4-6 hours per day. Schedule is arranged between you and the Host.
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 Community of over 4,000 online.
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.
Contact Hosts in real time with Instant Private messaging as well as Member Forums and Notice Board.
Images & Video
Upload your favourite pics to your Profile photo, cover image and gallery.
Download our free Mobile App and search for Hosts, or connect with other WWOOFers in Australia.
Use the intuitive member only Map Search to find Hosts or other Volunteers nearby or anywhere in Australia.
Read Reviews of Hosts and other Volunteers on their Profiles, and leave your own Reviews of Host Farms you’ve stayed with.
Save money by signing up with your partner or travelling companion. Dual Memberships available.
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”
Thank You Jackie & David O’Reilly in SA
We had a wonderful first WWOOF experience with Jackie and David on their beautiful property. Great organic food, varied and interesting work, lovely company and fabulous location. Thank you both! You are fab. We had… Read more “Thank You Jackie & David O’Reilly in SA”
Wwoofing enhances our life
Have hosted since 2008 over 80 wwoofers – it’s a marvellous enhancement to our farm life. Enjoyed getting to know so many wwoofers from many countries. Especially enjoy the evening games of Scrabble where it… Read more “Wwoofing enhances our life”
Lovely peaceful retreat from city life, come to QLD
Lovely peaceful retreat from city life. Maria and Neil are wonderful and informative hosts. It was great to experience permaculture and a range of jobs and enjoy nourishing food produced on the property. Lovely spot… Read more “Lovely peaceful retreat from city life, come to QLD”
Come WWOOF at Beechworth Natural Farm
We were delighted to have Spencer Spencer Platten WWOOF with us at Beechworth Natural Farm. He has an easygoing nature and is willing to tackle any project big or small. He is able to work alone… Read more “Come WWOOF at Beechworth Natural Farm”
WWOOFing just 20 minutes from the centre of Canberra
John & Carol Lilleyman Host NA197 are a very lovely family and give you the feeling as you are a part of the family. You really need to love dogs and chickens if you want… Read more “WWOOFing just 20 minutes from the centre of Canberra”
WWOOFers, Lifestyle is relaxed & easy going
Hosts Di Percy Di and Martin are wonderful people; very genuine and grateful for the help that WWOOFing can provide. It’s a beautiful part of Victoria with close access to Phillip and French islands. Don’t hesitate… Read more “WWOOFers, Lifestyle is relaxed & easy going”
Learning what sustainability is with QLD Host
I would like to give HUGE 5 star to Heather’s farm Host QN014 Heather Worth and experiences I had there. Heather is wonderfull lady with lots of love. Staying with her and following her life style… Read more “Learning what sustainability is with QLD Host”
Hosts WP203 Very friendly, nice,fun
Gina and Andrew Andrew Graham & Gina Sanderson are really the bests Hosts.very friendly, nice,fun.It was an amazing experience and 2 weeks it wasn’t enough to enjoy chittering acres.. A very cute house on a wonderful… Read more “Hosts WP203 Very friendly, nice,fun”
Fantastic WWOOFer – Thank you
Marlen Grimm is a great WWOOFer. Excellent eye for detail and works well with others. We thoroughly enjoyed Marlen helping us and have no hesitation in recommending her to future Hosts. Lisa and Brad – Elmsleigh
Another awesome WWOOFer
Amalia Sophie Engler is a thoughtful WWOOFer who works well with others. We thoroughly enjoyed Amalia helping us and have no hesitation in recommending her to future Hosts. Lisa and Brad – Elmsleigh
Those hot summer days!
Tsubasa Yamasaki worked with us at Elmsleigh. He is a thoughtful, respectful and caring person who showed great initiative and worked hard in the hot Summer Sun. We were delighted with Tsubasa’s perseverance and patience… Read more “Those hot summer days!”
Satisfying work with a wonderful group of farm hands- Happy WWOOFer
I enjoyed my time on this farm so much that I’ll be coming back soon! Leonard & Renee Costantini are a wonderful family who welcome you as their own; cooking great dinners and showing you… Read more “Satisfying work with a wonderful group of farm hands- Happy WWOOFer”
Cooking, Mud brick, metal welding, etc… thank you for your teaching
Andrew Graham & Gina Sanderson are a very kind, friendly and funny person. Thank you for your take care, we like a family. The accommodation is large, clean and comfortable. I had been there for 2… Read more “Cooking, Mud brick, metal welding, etc… thank you for your teaching”
beautiful place, Margaret is fantastic!!!
Margaret Lockhart VW061 has a beautiful place, Margaret is fantastic!!! Flavie Chevalier
WWOOFer, she made herself at home, worked hard, showed initiative, and wanted to learn!
Chloe Thompson was a fantastic WWOOFer, she made herself at home, worked hard, showed initiative, and wanted to learn. Chloe was a delight to have in our home. We would recommend her as a WWOOF… Read more “WWOOFer, she made herself at home, worked hard, showed initiative, and wanted to learn!”
Learn from your WWOOFers its a great experience, cross sharing knowledge
Thomas Köhrer has been a great guest. He works hard and our garden is now looking lovely and all cleaned up thanks to him. He has had a go at many different tasks. We’ve also… Read more “Learn from your WWOOFers its a great experience, cross sharing knowledge”
WWOOFing is all about chances to improve and learn farming skills
Worked not exactly on High Peak Farm all the time, but on a other farm which Tony Ruse owns. Stayed there for four weeks and learned a lot. I worked together with the farm workers… Read more “WWOOFing is all about chances to improve and learn farming skills”
Great Working WWOOFers
Jan Semorad & Marion are great WWOOFers, hard working, quick to learn, tidy and, best of all , good company! Written By Hosts Alexandra Mateer & Rick Kilpatrick
I felt like one of the family – thank you
Hosts Fleur & Anthony Dawkins are very welcoming. They provided me with everything that I needed. The food was great, so was the wine. I had a great 3 weeks with them. They took me in… Read more “I felt like one of the family – thank you”
Barking Salmon? Happy to share experiences of self-sufficiency
What an amazing time we had at Barking Salmon ! We spent one week with Mat and Jeanette Fegan and we have to say that, as a first WWOOF experience, we could’t dream of better hosts… Read more “Barking Salmon? Happy to share experiences of self-sufficiency”
A Willing Worker – Yes ! Come WWOOF with us
Yosuke Sano stayed with us at Elmsleigh. Yosuke is very polite and respectful young man who works very hard and speaks good English. We have enjoyed Yosuke working with us and has helped us with… Read more “A Willing Worker – Yes ! Come WWOOF with us”
One of the best WWOOF families I have every stayed with!
I can only recommend this farm.Host Farm WP213 Pia is really lovely and has a beautiful property. I just stayed there for 2 weeks but I had the feeling I got to know almost her whole… Read more “One of the best WWOOF families I have every stayed with!”
WWOOFing at Hawkesbury River Cottage
Couldn’t have hoped for a better stay. The work was interesting, the location is spectacular and the hosts are lovely people who made me feel very welcome. I was definitely sad to leave Hawkesbury River… Read more “WWOOFing at Hawkesbury River Cottage”
Hills and Hollows horsey girls
Paula and Hannah travelled from Germany to work on our Horse Farm and Riding School. They were the most delightful girls to work with. They were willing helpers with fencing and Caring for horses. They… Read more “Hills and Hollows horsey girls”
Fantastic Karinya farm and family
Appreciate Tracy Malone & Tony Barnes gave my daughter and me the first chance to be WWOOFers and we had a wonderful sweet memory with their friendly and lovely family. They are so considerate and… Read more “Fantastic Karinya farm and family”
Amazing WWOOFers from France
We have been WWOOF hosts for roughly 10 years and have found that most WWOOFers are wonderful. However I was blown away by Camille and Anthony. They are passionate vegans and passionate vegan cooks, and… Read more “Amazing WWOOFers from France”
Winners of the World Cup
We have just had a couple of delightful French Woofers Benny and Cecilia, staying with us for a week. Last night before leaving today they got to have a really exciting experience, watching France win… Read more “Winners of the World Cup”
The Best Garden I have ever seen!
I cannot recommend Neil and Maria’s property enough! I stayed at their farm for about 10 days.They are such a lovely, generous, welcoming, knowledgeable couple. They have such a beautiful garden which has lots of… Read more “The Best Garden I have ever seen!”
Advancing our educational center – Thank you
We had the pleasure of hosting Johannes for about 6 weeks and found him to be respectful when working with our tools and living at our home. He is very skilled as a builder which… Read more “Advancing our educational center – Thank you”
Satchi stayed with us for two weeks with her boyfriend Keito. Both Satchi and Keito were great members of our team. They worked hard, asked questions when they weren’t sure and showed initiative. Some nights… Read more “Japanese Dinners”
An independent and capable WWOOFer
Chika stayed with us for a wintery and wet week in august. She was a lovely guest, very polite, considerate and helpful. She was a bit hesitant with her english which was really much better… Read more “An independent and capable WWOOFer”
A host that embraces Families
Graham, Jan, Hannah, Neve and Jordan impressed us with their hospitality. We are a family with young children but the Godfrey’s adapted easily and were so enthusiastic and keen to engage the kids and us… Read more “A host that embraces Families”
Animals, Nature and Good Food
Life light is an amazing farm which I recommend to every WWOOFer who likes animals, nature and good food ( delicious food ). I’ve learned a lot of things in this farm and had very… Read more “Animals, Nature and Good Food”
The Best WWOOFing experience ever!
We stayed for two weeks and it was our best WWOOFing experience! We learned a lot about organic farming and how to pick and plant vegetables. The hosts were very nice, generous and funny. The… Read more “The Best WWOOFing experience ever!”
Ended up staying for 3 weeks!
Life light farm is such a perfect place for volunteers to stay especially if you love animals!!!!!!!!!THAN ＹＯＵ ＭＵＳＴ ＧＯ THERE!!! I stayed there for three weeks and I had such a great time there. I did a… Read more “Ended up staying for 3 weeks!”
I can’t say enough positive things about my WWOOFing experience.
I can’t say enough positive things about my WWOOF’ing experience with Gina and Andrew. As this was my first time, they have set the bar incredibly, maybe too high :), for WWOOF’ing in the future.… Read more “I can’t say enough positive things about my WWOOFing experience.”
I learn’t planting, chook care and pest management!
I learn’t over a variety of areas including planting, chook care and pest management! WWOOFing at Shady Camp with Shell, Kane and their boys was a great experience. They welcomed me & my dog, Maggie,… Read more “I learn’t planting, chook care and pest management!”
Thanks a lot for the great time with WWOOF!!
I had a great time in Australia. I stayed on two WWOOF farms in the Northern Territory and I met nice farmers, great people! WWOOF was a really good way for me as a backpacker… Read more “Thanks a lot for the great time with WWOOF!!”
Brazilians are the best!!!
To thank our fantastic Brazillian WWOOFA guests who worked so hard, were the most amazing company and we wish you the best of luck with your travels.
Thanks to Louiza and Gee!!
Canadian WWoofers at Claypot Curry House in Woolamai – Victoria
We sure do miss Jeremi and Miguel. What a fabulous pair. A credit and wonderful role models to all youth. They came did every job allocated to them to the very best of their ability… Read more “Canadian WWoofers at Claypot Curry House in Woolamai – Victoria”
Companionship at it’s best
We had a fantastic experience with Lucie Beaudoin from Quebec Canada. Lucie is a very hard worker, great listener with a wonderful personality.
Eager to learn & share new ideas on any subject of… Read more “Companionship at it’s best”
Miho arrived lacking confidence. Miho loved to work HARD! At end of day’s work Miho did not want to stop declaring I still have POWER! I would recommend Miho to any host – she’s marvellous!
Another great WWOOF guest
Recently Kaori Mukai spent a week with me at Turtle Rock here in Illinbah.
It was a very positive experience again working together, learning about each other’s cultures and getting much needed jobs done.
Read more “Another great WWOOF guest”
Thank you for the wonderful time in Kangaroo Island
We spent five weeks with Mel, Justin and their wonderful childrens. Emu Ridge in Kangaroo Island with the eucalyptus distillery ist an interesting place with many friendly people. They showed us the most beautiful placesof… Read more “Thank you for the wonderful time in Kangaroo Island”
19 Years Hosting…It has been worth the journey!
19 Years Hosting….it has been worth the joiurney! Just to let you know we wont be renewing our membership this year. Its been great over the last 19 years and we feel it’s probably time… Read more “19 Years Hosting…It has been worth the journey!”
Daruka Homestead is AMAZING! You will not be disappointed!!
If you are lucky enough to be invited to volunteer at Daruka Homestead – don’t hesitate – TAKE IT! I just finished an 8-week stint on this farm and it was hands down, one of… Read more “Daruka Homestead is AMAZING! You will not be disappointed!!”
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 100% 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.
Membership is for one (Single) or two (Dual) Volunteers for 12 months.
Host profiles provide members with names, contact details, a description and map location of each host property with reviews and photos, as well as the skills you can learn and the kind of living arrangements and types of meals 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 (schedule of days and hours to be arranged with the Host prior to your arrival) and in return you will live with your host, 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.
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. Get a Free Quote here.
Join in 3 Easy Steps!
Joining WWOOF Australia is as easy as 1, 2, 3 - gain access to Organic Host Farms and experience Australia as the locals do. (Don't forget your Travel Insurance as medical services in Australia can be very expensive!)
Sign Up for $70
12 month membership:
Single $70 or Dual $120
Create Your Profile
Totally talk about yourself, your skills, your likes & contact details.
Search for Hosts via a Map Search, Skill Search, or WWOOF Noticeboard.
Select WWOOFer Volunteer membership
WWOOFer Volunteer Memberships
Payment via: Credit Card, Paypal or Direct Deposit
WWOOFers help out on Host properties Australia wide and learn about organics.
12 month Membership.
One person only.
All WWOOFers are checked by Hosts.
12 month Membership.
Two people only.
All WWOOFers are checked by Hosts.
FAQs and Legal Stuff!
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.
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 or letters of invitation, so please do not ask.
The Australian Department of Home Affairs 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,
For all of the above visas, please see the Department of Home Affairs website for conditions, or if you need to talk to someone, by phone, Monday – Friday 8.30am – 4.30pm on 131 881
*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 and MUST be done for a Not-For-Profit entity, such as a Hobby Farm. If you are entering Australia on a Tourist visa it is essential that you have Tourist style accommodation booked for your first few days, and have plans for tourist activities, WWOOFing must not be the main reason for your visit to Australia.
WWOOFers on Tourist visas who prearrange to stay on Commercial Farms can be refused entry to Australia as their visa conditions do not permit work. If you do prearrange any WWOOF Host visits, ensure they are Hobby Farms.
In most cases WWOOFers on Tourist visas 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 live with the hosts, 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 and the list search allows you to select hobby farms as you search for a host..
Home Affairs say this about Visitor Visas - Tourist stream:
This visa lets you:
- visit family or friends
- be here as a tourist, for a cruise or for any purpose except business or medical treatment
You can study or train for up to 3 months in total on this visa. But if your main reason for travelling to Australia is study, a student visa might be more appropriate.
You can't work*.
*Volunteering is not considered work by Home Affairs, who define volunteering as follows:
Volunteer work is work that:
- is unpaid (you can be provided with meals, accommodation or out-of-pocket living expenses)
- would not otherwise be done by an Australian for pay
- is short term
- is incidental to your visit to Australia
- is done for a not-for-profit organisation
- benefits the community
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 both permit paid work as well as volunteering.
WWOOFing (Volunteering) IS allowed on ALL Working Holiday Visas
The Department of Home Affairs 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.”
For details, see:
Student visa holders may volunteer for not-for profit (hobby farms) as for Tourist visas, or they can volunteer on commercial farms for up to 40 hours per fortnight as part of their paid work allowance.
For details see:
IMPORTANT NOTE: Home Affairs change the rules from time to time about what activities are allowed on these visas, it is important to confirm with Home Affairs that the type of visa you apply for does allow volunteering in exchange for food and accommodation. WWOOF does NOT have any influence over Home Affairs, and they do not advise WWOOF if they alter the Rules, the most current information is always on their website homeaffairs.gov.au
For more information, see the WWOOF visa PDF
We require all WWOOFers to have adequate Travel Insurance to ensure they are covered for any eventuality that may occur while WWOOFing. Medical treatment, hospital admissions and Ambulance transport in Australia is extremely expensive for visitors from other countries, so medical insurance is essential. Many Travel Insurance policies do not cover volunteers, so we have sourced a Policy that does cover volunteering to make this easier for WWOOFers.
For details of the Travel Insurance Policy, see the Product Disclosure Statement
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 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 one person or $120 for 2 people for 12 months
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 WWOOF hosts Australia wide.
- You will live with your host, either in their home or on their property, in exchange for your help on WWOOF host Properties Australia wide. All meals will be provided by your host.
- Full access to the WWOOF Website and App, including member only Map searches, Noticeboard and Forum.
- 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.
- Cultural exchange experience.
NOTE: We strongly advise WWOOFers to ensure they have adequate Travel Insurance and medical cover to suit their needs.
How long do I have to Volunteer per day?
WWOOFers volunteer for 4 to 6 hours maximum each day* for their host in exchange for living with the host, either in their home or on their property, all meals, social engagement and the host also shares their knowledge and practical 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.
Can I WWOOF with a Pet?
If you plan to WWOOF and take your pet with you it is vitally important that you make this clear in your Profile and advise Hosts of this on first contact, to ensure they are happy to host you with a Pet.
If you are travel with a pet, please understand that Hosts who have animals of any kind on their property may not agree to Host you. It is perfectly acceptable for hosts to stipulate No Pets in their Host Profiles and refuse to take WWOOFers with Pets. This is for the safety of your pet and for the safety of the animals on the Host property.
If you travel with a pet, your pet is entirely your responsibility while on any host property. You must ensure it is kept under control at all times.
We have had an incident on a farm when a WWOOFer travelling with a pet dog allowed it off the leash and it was attacked by a working dog. This resulted in the pet being injured, unexpected vet bills, as well as the Host, the WWOOFer and the pet all being traumatised by the experience. The pet will recover, but this may have been avoided if the host had insisted the pet be kept on a leash and not had it in the same area as working animals. Pet dogs have also been known to chase chooks and cause grief for both the Host and WWOOFer.
If a Host does not have any animals on their property they may be happy to host WWOOFers travelling with a pet. We ask them to be be very clear about setting ground rules to ensure everyone is clear about what is and isn’t ok.
Please be aware that farms can be very dangerous places for pets, some of the potential dangers to unrestrained pets are snakes, crocodiles, kangaroos (who love to lure dogs into dams and drown them), wombats (who will lure a dog into their burrow and crush them) and other dangers that hosts may warn you of. Your pet is precious, so please ensure you take care that they are kept safe while you are WWOOFing.
What type of voluntary tasks do WWOOFers do?
WWOOFers mostly help with outdoor farming and gardening type tasks. 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 and learn about whatever the host is doing at the time of their visit. In regards to the 4-6 hours we highly recommend you discuss this with the host prior to your visit or before you start your first day volunteering as this can vary between hosts, particulary the days preferred.
Do I get paid?
WWOOFing is a non-monetary living and learning exchange between hosts and WWOOFers. Do not ask to be paid.
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 so please do not ask hosts for money.
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, we recommend joining on a Dual membership with your guardian.
WWOOFers require average physical and mental fitness, maturity and independence to participate in the program. WWOOF is generally unsuitable for persons suffering from physical, 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. Two volunteers travelling together can join on a Dual membership.
Hosts will check your WWOOFer User Name which is your membership ID for head office. You can show Hosts your profile in your WWOOF App or on the WWOOF Website, this is your proof of current membership. Your membership expiry date is on your profile.
Host are required to record your details in their guestbook, including your visa type, travel insurance details, passport and photo ID, on arrival.
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 user name and contact details. (We treat this as confidential)
- Host’s or WWOOFers name and membership User Name.
- 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 suspend or 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 suspended during the investigation.
For our full Compaints Process please see the Complaints Tab on the Host Guidelines
Can I go WWOOFing with Children?
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. In these countries, we strongly recommend that you join the group in the country that you are going to.
For contact details of all WWOOF groups see WWOOF International.
Some countries have WWOOF hosts but don't have a national WWOOF group. These hosts are available through WWOOF Independents where you can join and find more information.
Countries with a national WWOOF group are listed on the WWOOF International website along with links to their websites and other contact information.
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 fraudulent websites publishing WWOOF host details which have been pirated from outdated WWOOF lists from all over the world.
These lists can include deleted Hosts who have been removed from WWOOF programs for bad behaviour and other reasons.
Legitimate 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 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 email@example.com.
For mobile phones the number to call in all emergencies is 112.
For landlines 000 is the number for all emergency services in Australia.
An operator will connect you to police, ambulance or the fire brigade and will ask you to stay on the phone so they can assist and advise you.
WWOOFers are responsible for their own Travel Insurance, it is very expensive to get medical assistance in Australia.
A WWOOFer should be willing and happy to volunteer 4-6 hours maximum daily and must treat hosts with consideration and respect.
Please note the 4-6 hours can be organised around any day of the week, but should be no more than 38 hours in any 7 day period. Feel free to discuss this with the host prior to your arrival. WWOOF Hosts sometimes work weekends so you might be required to volunteer on those days too.
It is important to bring clothing and footwear appropriate for farm life, i.e. sturdy shoes/boots, clothes such as jeans or canvas pants, hat & gloves. Hosts will provide any protective clothing required.
On arrival at a host:
- Provide proof of Membership - username and photo ID. Your WWOOFer profile in the WWOOF App or website is proof of membership.
- Record details in host Guest-books. If required by host, the WWOOFer agreement should also be signed.
- Hosts will arrange membership for non-members.
- Memberships are not transferable. One person per single membership, two people only per dual membership.
- WWOOFers are responsible for their own travel, accident and medical insurance.
- WWOOFers have access to all WWOOF hosts. Host contact details are only to be used for arranging WWOOF visits. Any other use is in breach of Australian Privacy Laws, any misuse will lead to immediate cancellation of membership.
- Minimum stay = 2 nights. Longer as agreed with hosts. If a host profile is not accurate, please advise WWOOF. WWOOFers may leave if conditions are unacceptable, but must advise host prior to leaving.
- WWOOFing is a voluntary, non-monetary living and learning exchange. 4 to 6 hours maximum volunteering per day in exchange for living with your Host family and learning about their organic practices and culture. There is a maximum of 38 hours in any 7 days. This is flexible, check with hosts about volunteering patterns before visiting.
- Volunteering tasks vary from host to host. WWOOFing may include weeding, making compost, gardening, planting, harvesting, building, fencing, environmental tasks, 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 tasks.
- WWOOFers require average physical and mental fitness, maturity and independence. WWOOF is generally unsuitable for persons suffering from physical, psychiatric or psychological medical 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 9 pm, 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. WWOOF t-shirts and caps help identify each other.
- Children and pets are only accepted on host properties by arrangement.
- WWOOFer etiquette: Each Host will have their own House Rules which must be followed.
- Treat hosts and their families with consideration and respect.
- Keep your living area tidy, clean up after yourself and help with meals or washing up.
- Water is precious! Farms rely on rainwater tanks & drought is common in Australia.
- Do not raid refrigerator or pantry, use telephone or internet without asking permission first.
- Food is provided by hosts. You may need to bring your own special dietary food.
- Offer to cook your favourite meal for your host.
- Alcohol and drugs should remain at home.
- WWOOFers not following these guidelines and/or host House Rules may be asked to leave.
- Abusive language, inappropriate behaviour and sexual harassment of any kind will not be tolerated. If this occurs the WWOOF membership will be cancelled immediately. Hosts will be notified immediately of Blocked members. If appropriate WWOOF Australia will also notify Police and/or Border Force immediately.
- 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.
- 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 experiencing new tasks along side your host and sometimes it can be different, but a lot of fun.
- Remember to ask before you arrive what voluntary tasks 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 volunteering is outdoors.
- 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 a hosts' Internet. Many hosts rely on satellite Internet with very small data plans, (downloading or streaming a movie can use a whole month's data allowance). We are sure you will understand the importance of conserving energy and other resources on the host property.
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.
WWOOF (World Wide Opportunities 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 after people asked “why only weekends?” Gradually WWOOF groups around the world changed this to World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms.
Today there are over 55 WWOOF groups all over the world. 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 travelers and students in exchange for between 4 and 6 hours volunteer assistance per day.
Lionel Pollard began WWOOF Australia in 1981, he retired in 2000. WWOOF remains 100% Australian owned, managed and operated. The WWOOF Office is located in W Tree in the foothills of the Snowy Mountains, East Gippsland in Victoria and currently has a Team of four, two in the office as well as a Webmaster and App developer.
WWOOF Hosts all over Australia were originally listed in the Australian WWOOF Book, which was updated and printed twice each year from 1981 until 2017. The WWOOF Australia App was launched in August 2015 and gradually replaced the WWOOF Book, with the final edition being printed in July 2017 due to a lack of demand.
The WWOOF App provides up to date host contact details, map location, a profile and reviews of each property, the work to be done, meal types and accommodation. WWOOFers simply browse through the hosts or search for a specific interest and/or location, 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 volunteer with the host families in the same way as relatives and friends do when they visit.
In October 2017 the WWOOF Website platform was launched with Host and WWOOFer Profiles, messaging, forums, noticeboard, map and list searches and availability calendars for all members. In April 2018 an upgraded WWOOF App was launched to reflect the features of the WWOOF Website, allowing WWOOFers to also search for Hosts while they are off line.
For contact details of WWOOF groups and information about WWOOFing in countries without a WWOOF Group, see WWOOF International.