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South Whidbey Tilth Sustainability Internship Program

Nettle Hollow & South Whidbey Tilth | | prscot@whidbey.net

Posted on: 01/17/2016 2:39 pm

Dates: February 2, 2016 through November 16, 2016 (dates are flexible)

South Whidbey Tilth Association (Tilth) (www.southwhidbeytilth.org) is initiating a new program to teach and demonstrate small-scale organic farming and manage the South Whidbey Tilth Farmers’ Market. Tilth is recruiting an intern to be based on the Tilth campus and to facilitate community education with programs about sustainable food growing practices and managing the weekly seasonal Farmers’ Market. This program will support the work of other food security projects including the Good Cheer Food Bank Garden, the Whidbey Institute Westgarden and the South Whidbey School District Farm and Garden Program.

Goals of this project include:

  • Increase public awareness of the Tilth Farmers’ Market, attract more vendors and customers to the market.
  • Build programs on South Whidbey Tilth’s 11.32 acres as a destination training center on sustainable food growing, marketing, and land resource conservation practices.
  • Create a network of cooperation with other sustainable agriculture projects through the project leaders and interns/apprentices on Whidbey Island.

Training includes:

  • Leadership skills such as project management, volunteer coordination, outreach and publicity, working with varied age groups, and teaching and public speaking.
  • Master Gardener Training through the Island County Extension service of Washington State University.
  • Ongoing mentoring and regular check-ins to support the professional and personal growth and development of the intern.
  • Classes and workshops through South Whidbey Tilth and partnering organizations to learn sustainable agriculture practices such as soil cultivation, growing starts, planting, seeding, irrigation, harvesting, produce management, hoop house cultivation, crop rotation, composting and vermiculture, record keeping, limited and supervised use of power tools and small machinery.

Scope of Duties:

  • Keep personal garden plot under continual cultivation
  • Promote cohesion and cooperation among other Tilth community gardeners to maintain their plots and common areas, including fruit trees, etc.
  • Meet weekly with designated supervisor
    Initiate regular educational work parties and classes that include Tilth members and the community
  • Coordinate workdays with other community gardens (South Whidbey School District Farm and Garden Program, Good Cheer Food Bank Garden, Whidbey Institute’s Westgarden).
  • Build a volunteer and skill-set base of present Tilth members and recruit new members from the community
  • Provide quarterly reports to the Tilth Council of Trustees on design concerns and long-term implementation strategies
  • Maintain a landscape that welcomes teaching opportunities for the public
    Promote and manage the Tilth Farmers’ Market, open May through October on Sundays; recruit more vendors to sell at the market
  • Coordinate with the Land Steward for Tilth farm stand use by additional community farmers
  • Keep and maintain a record of project time, expenses, income and product
  • Develop strategies to increase income through the market, classes and events on the campus.

Time commitment: February through mid-November 2016
Workdays are a flexible 35 hours a week, including 5 hours for Sunday market days, 9:45 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. Five days vacation is encouraged with sufficient notice.
Compensation: South Whidbey Tilth can offer:

  • a stipend of $300/month. Workmen’s compensation is also provided as part of the Washington State Farm Internship Project
  • a plot in the community garden (20 by 20 feet)
  • some farming tools and a materials budget
  • a no-fee vending space at the South Whidbey Tilth Farmers’ Market
  • access to the classroom/office with internet
  • if needed, every effort will be made to help the intern find housing at minimal cost
    as needed, transportation can be arranged
  • Tilth and other community gardens are accessible by bus, except on weekends.
  • Food is available from the gardens and the Good Cheer Food Bank.

Skills and Experience desired:

  • eagerness to learn new agricultural methods
  • some experience or course work in agriculture
  • desire to work well with all kinds of people
  • ability to motivate others under difficult conditions
  • good teaching skills
  • good communication and organizational skills
  • in good physical condition

Preferred:

knowledge of many aspects of farming, including but not limited to animal husbandry, beekeeping, nursery work, composting and/or vermiculture, irrigation systems, carpentry and farmers’ marketing;
selling at or operation of a farmers’ market;
knowledge of native plants;
ability to write well;
skill in product display and handling; and
have own vehicle and housing.
Application Process

To successfully apply and be considered for this position you must submit the following required application materials:

1.     Submit a letter or an email addressing how you meet the minimum and preferred qualifications.

2.     Provide a current resume along with two references.

 

Deadline: Friday, January 22

Materials may be submitted using one of the following options:

EMAIL: mailto:president@southwhidbeytilth.org

MAIL: South Whidbey Tilth Association

P.O. Box 252

Langley, WA 98260

 

Questions can be directed to the email above or call Prescott at 360-682-8642.

Number of interns needed: one

Kids Okay: No.

Pets Okay: No.

Car Required: No.

Experience Required: Helpful.

Learning Opportunities: On The Job.

Housing: Maybe.

Paid: No.