Sustainable Farming Apprenticeship at Simple Gifts Farm with Rogue Farm Corps
Last Updated On: febrero 25th, 2022 at 11:03AM MST
Contact informationFarm Address:
3339 Crest St.
Klamath Falls, Oregon, 97603
Primary Contact: Rogue Farm Corps
Internship informationGeneral Farm Description: Simple Gifts Farm is a small produce farm in Klamath Falls, OR, and is one of our satellite host farms. An urban market garden style farm, they own a two-acre parcel on the south-east side of Klamath Falls and currently use about 1/2 acre for the farm, with lots of room to expand. The Klamath Basin is on the east side of the Cascades and thus has a unique high-desert climate with much less annual precipitation than Western Oregon, and a short frost-free growing season. Kent Simons started SGF in 2015 as a part-time “hobby farm” and it became a full-time business after he fully retired in 2017. We use natural, organic, sustainable methods and emphasize building healthy soil and conserving natural resources. The farm employs very little mechanization – most work is done using hand tools including a broadfork, spades, rakes, hoes, etc. We sometimes rent a rototiller when necessary but are working to implement no-till or minimal-till practices as much as possible. We strive to improve our farm’s infrastructure, production methods, and business practices; we’re very open to trying new things, learning from others and learning by doing! Sales outlets include the local Farmers Market on Saturdays, an expanding CSA program, and a local on-line food marketplace (www.KFOM.org). In addition, Simple Gifts Farm is working to develop Farm-to-School opportunities with the Klamath County School District which have the potential to grow into a substantial sales avenue and put healthy produce into local school lunches! Kent is looking for one RFC apprentice to join the farm team this season. You can read more about Simple Gifts Farm here: https://www.roguefarmcorps.org/host-farms/simplegifts
CRAFT Member Farm? No
Internship Starts: 3/21/22
Internship Ends: 10/28/22
Number of Internship Available: 1
Application Deadline: ASAP
Minimum Length of Stay: 6-8 Months
RFC’s Apprenticeship Program is an on-farm learning experience for those who have at least one full season (5+ months and at least 600 hours) of farm or ranch experience (or equivalent). The Apprenticeship combines hands-on training and skills-based education for those ready to dive into the art and business of sustainable agriculture. This program helps people who want to continue in agriculture to learn the skills needed to manage and run a diversified farming operation, and deepen their understanding of ecological and sustainable agricultural practices.
Similar to the Internship Program, apprentices train at one of RFC’s partner Host Farms. Participants also engage in a series of educational weekend intensives in locations around the state which include farm tours, networking, and camping. They also participate in a handful of online classes and discussions to round out the on-farm experience. The Apprenticeship, like the Internship, examines the economic, ecological and social sustainability of farm practices, and continues to build on these themes.
RFC Apprenticeship host farm sites can be located up to 3 hours driving distance from an active chapter location (Portland Metro and Rogue Valley).
APPLICATIONS / SCHOLARSHIPS
Applications are accepted on our website on a rolling basis until positions are filled, but early applications are considered first. Apply by January 27th, 2022 for priority consideration. RFC has limited tuition scholarships available for BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, veteran, and low-income applicants.
RFC has developed COVID-19 safety protocols according to state and federal guidance and will adjust them as needed to protect the health and safety of our participants, staff, host farmers, and communities. In-person educational events are held outside with social distancing in place.
TYPES OF AGRICULTURE
Rogue Farm Corps partners with dedicated mentor host farms and ranches that focus on sustainable, regenerative, ecological, and/or organic approaches in their production methods. Host farm enterprises vary by farm and include animal (meat, dairy, eggs, etc) and plant-based production (vegetables, herbs, fruit, seeds, etc). Host farms are commercial, small-to-mid scale operations marketing to their local and regional community via a range of sales channels including farmers market, CSA, wholesale, and more. RFC participants are exposed to various farm production and marketing systems via RFC’s farm tour events.
COMMITMENT TO EQUITY AND INCLUSION
Rogue Farm Corps is committed to an ongoing learning process around privilege, power, inequality and systems of oppression. RFC has a goal of making our programs welcoming to, inclusive of, and accessible to communities who are under-represented as farm operators in Oregon, including women, Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC), LGBTQIA+ individuals, low-income individuals and immigrants. Our desire to create a more equitable food system is reflected in RFC’s programs and collaborations.
Educational Opportunities: The Apprentice’s responsibilities will include the full range of farm production activities, including: Propagation: seeding, transplanting, planting, etc. Bed preparation Weed management/cultivation Crop protection: row cover, pest & disease management Crop care: irrigation, thinning, pruning, fertilizing, trellising, etc. Harvest, wash & pack Tools & infrastructure maintenance & repair Help with sales prep & distribution, as appropriate Data recording & analysis, other business aspects as appropriate
Skills Desired: We expect that an Apprentice will have previously worked at least one full growing season on a farm somewhat similar to ours, and therefore will bring some level of experience, knowledge and skills applicable to market farming. We intend to expand on that and involve you in as much of the farm’s operations as you are ready and able to take on. Certainly we have “our way of doing things” and will want you to learn and follow those, but we will be open to hearing ideas from you, and exploring ways we might improve our systems together. See website for more details.
Meals: Apprentices will have a weekly CSA share of produce that we harvest each week (although this will not start until May), and you will have first choice of seconds or “scratch & dent” veggies from harvests – things that are normally not salable but still edible.
Stipend: We will start our Apprentice at minimum wage - currently $12/hour in this region of Oregon. Modest wage increases will be considered after 8 weeks, and again after 16 weeks, assuming that good progress is being made and evaluations are positive.
Housing: Yes, housing is provided in a 28' trailer located at the farm. Details to be discussed during the interview process.
Preferred method of Contact: Email / website