The mass of bright red vests dotting the Terra Madre arena are worn by the hundreds of volunteers who have become an inseparable part of the backdrop to the lively bi-annual meeting. From helping with registering delegates to assisting with educational activities and distributing food and drinks, these men and women of all ages are an essential mechanism in the smooth running of an event that welcomes thousands of people from more than 160 countries. We asked some of them what brings them to Terra Madre.
“The day that I retired, I decided that I wanted to continue to do something useful and became a volunteer. At Terra Madre, I get to see first hand a whole world of colors, countries and languages all in one space.”
Job of the day: cloakroom attendant
“I am working in the Journey to the Origins of Taste area, a series of activities which lets people discover the different sensory aspects of food. It is interesting for me because I have never given thought to all the different ways to experience food, so its opening my eyes too.”
Fausto Areri (Turin, Italy)
Job of the day: guiding participants through the sensorial journey
“I am from Turin and proud to be. I decided to work for Terra Madre because I want to give something back to the city that I love.”
Mauro Ambrogio Valente
Job of the day: directing delegates
“I am working in the campaign space at the moment, giving people information and collecting stories from delegates regarding Slow Food’s main campaigns – Slow Fish, Land Grabbing and GMOs. For me this has been a great chance to better understand the themes of Slow Food and the problems that are important to all of us.”
Emilio Bellatalla, Livorno Convivium leader
Job of the day: Slow Food Campaign space
“I am a student of agriculture and see Slow Food as an instrument to solve so many of the problems in this area. I am working in the Terra Madre Day space to help people register their events. It’s been a great experience so far because I am hearing about all the initiatives that people are planning around the world for December 10 this year, and seeing their commitment and passion. It is inspirational.
Alesssandro Ferri, 25 years old
Job of the day: helping delegates register for Terra Madre Day
For more information on Terra Madre Day
“In 2008 I volunteered for Terra Madre with a friend and I enjoyed it so much that I decided to volunteer again this year. This year I am helping with the Discovering Biodiversity activity, which I really believe in. Guiding people through this activity, I have a chance to speak to people from all over the world.
Laura Fattori, psychologist (Turin, Italy)
Job of the day: guiding delegates through “Discovering Biodiversity” activity