Work experience at the Karolinenhof farm
I have finished my two weeks of work experience at the Karolinenhof and I am very satisfied with my decision to experience working there. The Karolinenhof is a farm in the state of Brandenburg that has a goat cheese dairy and a café. I enjoyed working there very much. I wanted to know how cheese was made and learn how to cook. I spent some of the time in the dairy and on some days I spent most of the time looking after the baby goats in the barn. On both weekends I also helped out in the restaurant.
On the first day I was given a short explanation of who does what and how the daily procedure works. The other trainees and I were given a tour of the whole farm. From 11 a.m., the real work started.
In the next few days, I helped out in the dairy and made a lot of products by myself, such as mangolassi and Karolinenhöfer cheese, ricotta and cottage cheese. My least favourite job was washing up.
One day we spent the whole morning in the barn. We fed the animals and milked them. At midday, we had to help out in the kitchen at the restaurant. We cut up vegetables and washed salad leaves. By evening time we were back in the barn again to milk and feed the goats.
I want to work there again
On the following days, we mucked out the barn. Gela, our boss, drove the tractor into the barn and transported the dung to the compost using a loader. We cleaned up the edges where the loader couldn’t reach using shovels and pitchforks, and made sure that it was all thoroughly clean. And once we even took the baby goats to the big goats on the pasture by ourselves.
The landscape was great. You couldn’t hear any cars, just birds. In the evenings we always watched the beautiful sunsets. It was a good experience for me because I was allowed to help out everywhere and could try doing everything. Nobody got angry when I did something wrong. At first I was really worried because of course I had no idea how to do anything. And also because I had to stay overnight on the goat farm for fourteen days and didn’t know any of the other trainees there.
But I have to say that everything went well. I also thought it was nice that we had a little party at the end of the two weeks.
I enjoyed my work experience so much that I asked Gela, my boss, if I could work there again some time for a part-time job and she said yes. I’m going to do that! Unfortunately, work experience only lasted two weeks. You can’t learn about everything in such a short time or get to know everyone. I’m taking a lot of things with me out of work experience. I learnt a lot about working together with other people. I also noticed that it’s possible to build up relationships to animals, for example goats in our case. And of course I realised that you always have to be punctual and polite. If the boss says that something needs to be done, you have to do it whether you like it or not. Work experience is definitely a good opportunity to get an impression of working life.
The best thing was that I was allowed to ride on the tractor once. It was very hard for me to say goodbye to the goats because I had looked after them and spent so much time with them. They just grew very dear to my heart and I wished I could have taken a baby goat home with me. But of course that isn’t possible.
I learnt a lot at the farm and would love to work there again because I’m just really suited to it. I never would have thought that I wouldn’t mind working hard for so many hours every day. We were on our feet from six in the morning until eight in the evening. I would work there again any time.