I had no experience with orchids till I moved here, so I picked up this book from Amazon.com. Good book, seems to go over the basics for a hobby grower, with a few insites into commercial growing.
The American Orchid Society also has a bunch of info online. www.aos.org
Generally, you will have no trouble getting a few orchids to grow without raiding the wild. Friends often have them growing in their back yards and will give you a cutting. Some nurseries also sell them, and there is a least one organization training campesinos in the north to grow them as a cash crop, so more should be in the retail pipeline in the future.
If you pick local varieties and follow a few simple direction (ask the current grower), they seem to be easy to grow here.