Interns

CSAfarmer at aol.com CSAfarmer at aol.com
Sat Jun 24 06:54:21 EDT 2000


Well...interns are all different! After 11 years of several a year, I have 
horror stories and fond memories. Sometimes they are fantastic 
folks...sometimes they are downright unhelpful and even dangerous. 

I list through international WWOOF and all over the internet, plus through 
local schools and colleges and posters at the food co-ops. It's best to have 
a firm set of farm rules. They must be read and an agreement signed. All 
expectations should be made crystal clear up-front. The more rigorous the 
screening, the more likely you are to find gems. Taking in an intern is a lot 
like getting married...you need to choose well! You will have a close 
relationship for at least a growing season.

Folks through WWOOF belong to their country's organization, but I don't know 
of any other way to check them out except through talking and letters. We 
were supposed to have a woman from Japan here this summer, but at the last 
minute she said her mother was ill so she couldn't come after all. 

An intern is not getting paid wages, so that eliminates a lot of INS 
problems. We had a Mexican boy stay with us for 9 months and that got 
complicated because he didn't enter the country with permission to stay that 
long. We had to help him get a lawyer and deal with awful paperwork. It's 
ultimately the intern's responsibility to get into the country and do it 
legally.

You can look at the intern page of my website. I make it sound more boring 
and primitive than it is to weed out slackers. The truly anxious to learn are 
undaunted by adversity ;-)  My experience is that interns are way better than 
paid employees...they are interested in everything, curious, motivated, ask 
questions and actually work more than I expect them to. I love sharing 
knowledge and am looking for that special intern who would like to take over 
my CSA of 11 years. The intern we have right now just may be that person.  

So...if anyone out there is looking for an internship...we are still looking 
for a few. Last year there were 6...and that makes for a nice little 
community. Also, check out pics of the farm and our underground house on the 
website ;-)

Wendy S. Martin  
Peace and Carrots Farm
Calais, Vermont
<A HREF="http://www.homestead.com/peaceandcarrots">http://www.homestead.com/pe
aceandcarrots</A>



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