The FEI is a growing movement, that is being co-created by peasants, farmers, gardeners, scientists, students, activists, NGOs and agroecological companies – working together towards a sustainable, healthy, viable food system that is fair and just for the earth, the consumer and the producer. Together, we co-organize a 3 ECTS international summer course at the Wageningen University every year (since 2013), which intends to bring together theoretical knowledge from students with practical skills and knowledge from farmers. Are you interested in growing your own food, discovering local knowledge and practices on organic farms and gardens in the Netherlands? Do you want to learn about agroecology, food sovereignty and sustainable food systems? Or would you like to interact and discuss with farmers to find creative, innovative ways of farming? Then don’t wait any longer and join the FEI!
SET UP OF THE COURSE
1. PREPARATION – Lectures, workshops, excursions.
During the first phase of the FEI, you will get to know about all kinds of topics related to agriculture, e.g. agroecology, sustainable food systems, food sovereignty, seed patents etc. We share knowledge, eat together and have a good time. The preparation week will be held at The Building with the Clock (Generaal Foulkesweg 37, Wageningen) and the schedule is full day.
2. LET’S GO FARMING! Practical experience on a Dutch farm.
After the preparation week, each student is sent to a different farm somewhere in the Netherlands. Before the start of the FEI, you can tell us your preference, e.g. food forest, goat farm, organic garden etc. For two weeks you will be full time working together with the farmer, following his/her working rhythm, learning practical skills and local knowledge. Students are asked to make pictures or a short video about their stay at the farm, which they will present later on. The participating farms are mostly organic, however some are currently still seeking for a more sustainable management practices (which is very interesting for you as a student: can you find ways to support the farmer?).
3. EVALUATION. Present your pictures, share your experience
After two weeks harvesting, weeding, feeding cows, goats, or making cheese, students will come back to Wageningen for the evaluation phase. Share experience, discuss what you’ve learned and create the one and only FEI Story Book!
CREDITS or CERTIFICATE. Wageningen University is supporting the FEI through the chairgroup Rural Sociology (RSO). Via this chairgroup, WUR students can obtain 3 ECTS after completing the Farm Experience Internship and after handing in the evaluation report. For non-WUR students, a certificate is handed out by the RSO group. Note that you can only receive credits when you are enrolled at the Wageningen University.
ACCOMMODATION. During the Preparation and Evaluation phase, you will have to arrange your own accommodation. The FEI team recommends participants to first try to arrange a place to stay themselves via couchsurfing (free hosts). Later we will send a mail in advance to all participants so we can arrange hosts for those participants who do not live in Wageningen and have not find a host yet.
COSTS. The Costs for the FEI are only 65 euro’s, since we think it is important to offer this knowledge to everyone interested in sustainable food production. This fee includes organic lunch, snacks, drinks and also workshops, excursions and lectures during the preparatory and evaluation phase. Your stay at the farm is for free, but it would be appreciated if you give a present and/or financial compensation to the farmer. (note: not all farmers are able to host you – check the farmers list for details).
INSURANCE. Participants of the FEI who are not enrolled as WUR students have to arrange their own insurance during the FEI. Both Wageningen University and St.Boerengroep are not responsible and will not provide an insurance to FEI participants. By enrolling for the FEI, particpants agreed to have arranged their own insurance.
PARTICIPANTS. The FEI mainly aims at university students in order to connect them (and thereby the University) to farmers. However, non-students with an interest in sustainable agriculture are most welcome as well! Do you have any questions, would you like to sign up or are you interested in organizing a FEI? Send a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org