Before I left England to head to Canada I decided to join an orgnaisation known as WWOOF, also known as World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms. This allows travelers to volunteer on farms with food and accomodation provided but no pay is given. I didn't exactly have as much money as I'd hoped before I came out here, so this scheme sounded like a good way for me to try something new and save a penny or two in the process.
So here I am, working on a farm which attempts to be as ecologically friendly as possible, and to try it's hand at sustainable living. The fountain of knowledge that is Wiki leads me to believe the definition of sustainable living is 'a lifestyle that attempts to reduce an individual's or society's use of the Earth's natural resource and his/her own resource...(this incluces) altering methods of transportation, energy, consumption and diet.'
And as far as I can see, Goat's Pride goes to endless lengths to try and meet this definition. The Dykstra's, the family here, have a staggering nine children, five of which are still at home. Along with up to seven WWOOFers at a time (yes, that's what we call ourselves) this can make it all very difficult when you imagine how much waste this amount of people can produce.
However, I'm impressed by how little one can waste when you really put your mind to it. Very little rubbish actually goes in the bin here that we use for anything that cannot eventually be reused. There is half a room dedicated to various containers for different substances to be recycled. Two bins in the kitchen under the sink are for compost, into which all food leftovers go if they are inedible. Waste from the goats sits in a huge pile waiting to bagged up and sold as fertiliser gold to various other landowners. Another room is dedicated to anything made in jars, from jam to apple sauce to various fruits. The juice leftover from any of these goes into a big container used to drink at breakfast. And man alive is it delicious.
|The pride of Goat's Pride, the little babes!|
|Milk bottle I lovingly labelled,|
ready to be filled and sold.
I think this is something we can all forget from time to time, and as much as government schemes are out there to try and generate more recycling, it boils down to our laziness as to why we can't all be this way. Everyone does it, I certainly do. It's just easier to chuck everything in one bin and forget about it, rather than make a conscious effort to try and maintain the amount of waste you produce and to make it into something new.
I've learnt a lot from my stay here at Goat's Pride already, and intend to take home with me much more in the coming weeks. More info can be found on their website, on Facebook or Twitter.