FFLC Youth Farm Apprentice

Contact information
Farm Address:
Rogue Farm Corps, South Willamette
Eugene (Willamette Valley), Oregon, 97477

Primary Contact: Kait Crowley
Primary Phone:
    Number: 541-588-3551
    Email: training@roguefarmcorps.org

Website: https://www.roguefarmcorps.org/host-farms/fflc-youth-farm

Website: http://www.foodforlanecounty.org/gardens

Internship information
General Farm Description: We are a program of FOOD For Lane County (FFLC), the regional nonprofit food bank in our area. FFLC is a well respected and innovative organization with the mission of “Reducing hunger by engaging our community to create access to food”. On the Youth Farm, we cultivate 5 acres of diverse vegetable crops as well as approximately 70 mature fruit trees (apples, pears, Asian pears, plums), strawberries, thornless blackberries and a young blueberry patch. We are not certified organic, but we use all organic methods. We have two small tractors that we run on biodiesel that we use for discing, tilling, bed shaping and mowing. Most other work on the farm is by hand, including transplanting, weeding, harvesting, and post-harvest handling. We grow winter cover crops, and create our own compost. Approximately half of our produce is delivered to the FOOD For Lane County warehouse for distribution through our network of partners to those experiencing food insecurity in our county. The remainder we sell through a 170-member CSA, and an onsite produce stand on Saturdays, which includes an on-line store. We also grow vegetable, flower and herb starts for two very large plant sale fundraisers each spring. The Youth Farm is located on a 10 acre site within Springfield city limits. The land is owned by the local school district and is surrounded by single family homes, duplexes, apartment complexes and a city playground. We share the land with a separately managed community garden as well as a garden project connected to Springfield School District. The only facilities on site are storage sheds, including several shipping containers, roofed, open-air structures, two walk-in coolers, and several high tunnels with over 16,000 square feet of growing space. We are close to city bus lines and bike routes, and both downtown Springfield and Eugene are a 10 minute drive away. The neighboring town of Eugene is a large college town with plenty of entertainment and recreation opportunities, including bike paths, fairly close-in hiking trails, lakes and rivers for boating.

CRAFT Member Farm? No

Internship Starts: March
Internship Ends: November
Number of Internship Available: 2 POSITIONS, PART TIME (30 hrs/week)
Application Deadline: Rolling basis until positions are filled by early-mid March
Minimum Length of Stay: 500 training hours (~3-4 months minimum)

Internship Details:

An Apprenticeship is part of Rogue Farm Corps’ beginning farmer training program. Hands-on field training at the Host Farm is complemented by a series of classes, farm tours, discussions, and networking events organized by Rogue Farm Corps.

Apprentices join other beginning farmers for an Educational Event Series facilitated by Rogue Farm Corps.
The full event series includes:
24 classes focused on foundational sustainable agriculture concepts, skills, and knowledge and the food system.
7-10 farm tours which showcase practical skills and individual farmers’ stories, as well as provide insight into diverse production and marketing systems.
3-5 discussion circles with topics including Food Justice / Food Sovereignty, and Next Steps for Beginning Farmers.

RFC strives to make all educational events inclusive and welcoming to people from all backgrounds and identities. Classes, tours, and discussions are led by Rogue Farm Corps staff, agricultural professionals, and expert farmers. Scholarships are available.

Apprenticeship applications are accepted on the Rogue Farm Corps website on a rolling basis until positions are filled (usually by early-mid March), but early applications are considered first. Approved applications are passed onto the host farmer. Food For Lane County will decide which applicants to interview and offer placements to.

Rogue Farm Corps seeks to train an inclusive next generation of farmers and encourages applicants of all backgrounds and identities to apply.
Applications. https://www.roguefarmcorps.org/apprenticeship

Educational Opportunities: Apprentices will be trained in various aspects of the operation including orchard care (pruning, fertilizing, thinning), nursery and greenhouse management, and growing a wide variety of annual produce (over 40 crops). Work will include seeding, planting, cultivation and weed management, fertilization, harvesting, wash/pack, irrigation set-up and watering, composting, CSA and market set up and distribution, and use of small farm equipment (root barrel washer, salad mix spinner, vacuum seeder, walk behind tillers, flame weeders and lawn care equipment). Apprentices will also have the opportunity to help run our onsite produce stand, including set-up, take down and customer service. They will be involved in packing boxes for our CSA customers, which we do 2 times per week for a 25 week season. Our staff works alongside interns, and we train as we introduce new tasks. We also have a curriculum of educational topics, including composting, nutrient management and soil testing, plant propagation and nursery management, orchard management and fruit tree pruning, crop planning and rotation, winter farming, greenhouse management and construction, irrigation, cultivation and weed management, food preservation, cover cropping and food insecurity. These on farm classes will supplement Rogue Farm Corps online Educational Event Series and weekend intensives. Depending on interest, Apprentices will have the opportunity to lead volunteers and youth participants once they are trained.

Skills Desired: - Passion for organic farming, gardening or outdoor work - Previous experience in working with plants outdoors, agriculture, landscaping, etc. (Prefer 1-3 years experience) - Interest or experience in working with youth and community members - Ability to lift 50 pounds and perform physical farm tasks in adverse weather conditions - Excellent attention to detail - Good communication skills - Organized and reliable - Share FFLC’s values of Compassion, Inclusion and Collaboration

Meals: Farm produce and starts are provided as available.

Stipend: $17/hr for 30 hours/week. Vacation time accrual, sick time, and holiday pay are included. Reimbursement of RFC tuition if complete the season.

Housing: No housing is offered. Shared housing as well as apartments and studios can be found in both Eugene and Springfield. Check Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace to get an idea.

Preferred method of Contact: email / website