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Sun Spirit Farm Internship via Rogue Farm Corps
Applegate Valley, OR
Last Updated: 11-12-2018
General Description: Sun Spirit Farm is located on 30 riverfront acres of certified organic farmland on the Applegate River in Southern Oregon. They raise goats, sheep, chickens, ducks, horses, dogs, cats, and honeybees and grow organic annual veggies, perennial fruits, and medicinal and culinary herbs, using tractors, low-tech tools, and our hands. They use greenhouses to extend the growing season for our region and sell wholesale to local grocery stores, local restaurants, farmer’s markets, and a CSA.
Sun Spirit is a family farm, owned and operated by Brian and Michelle, who live there with their son. They are environmental activists who work for social justice and human rights, and are deeply committed to sustainable living and farming practices. Their farm manager, Giffin, will be working closely with the interns as well. They have been committed to organics for 20 years, and say “Growing food for ourselves and our community is our livelihood, our lifestyle, our spirituality, and a form of activism.” They enjoy sharing their beautiful farmland with others.
Internship Starts: 03-15-2019
Internship Ends: 10-31-2019
Number of Interns: 3
App Deadline: ASAP
Minimum Length of Stay: 7 months
Meals: Farm meals can accommodate vegan, vegetarian, or meat diets, and depends on individual needs, and interns have access to all food produced on the farm. The details of the room, board, and stipend package will be discussed during the interview process.
Skills Desired: Previous farming experience is desired though not required. Most importantly we are looking for people with commitment, dedication, a high level of integrity and attention to details.
Educational Opportunities: The Rogue Farm Corps Internship Program is a full season (6-8 month) entry-level residential internship program. Along with the hands-on field training you will receive from your Host Farm the Internship Program also includes classroom learning, tours of local farms, and a farm-based independent study project. As an intern at Sun Spirit you can expect to get hands-on practice in skills such as livestock care, milking goats, planting, cultivation, harvesting, selling at market, use of farm equipment, carpentry, food preservation, seed saving, irrigation, and pest management. We teach and train interns through demonstration, hands-on practice, and verbal communication. We expect interns to participate in five on-farm training days each week, approximately 8 hours/day, with two days off each week. Light to heavy physical exertion is to be expected daily.
ON-FARM TRAINING (~40+ HOURS/WEEK)
The Internship is a hands-on learning experience. The vast majority of your time will be spent learning by doing. You will train alongside your mentor and independently to develop skills while accomplishing daily tasks that move your host farm along through the season.
Rogue Farm Corps works closely with farm mentors to provide you with a skill-based curriculum that is unique to your host farm. Our Chapter Coordinators will conduct formal on-site evaluations with interns and host farmers to ensure that your education and training goals are being met.
EDUCATIONAL EVENTS: CLASSES, FARM TOURS, AND DISCUSSIONS (~3-5 TIMES PER MONTH)
To augment your training and learning at your host farm, you will join other interns in your local region for classes that teach practical skills as well as foundational concepts and knowledge, farm tours, discussion circles and potlucks throughout the agricultural region. These are led by Rogue Farm Corps staff, agricultural professionals, and expert farmers. You can expect a variety of teaching approaches and locations, from traditional classroom settings to experiential on-farm settings. Topics include but not limited to soil science, basic horticulture, tractors, greenhouse and plant propagation, seed saving, post harvest handling, crop planning, irrigation, animal husbandry, dairy, and integrated pest management.
INDEPENDENT PROJECTS (~1-2 HOURS PER WEEK)
During the course of the farming season, every intern will complete an independent project, submit a report and make a short presentation at the end-of-season Closing Dinner. Examples of previous independent projects include raising a small flock of ducks for market, constructing a root crop storage room, developing recipe cards for market customers, and building an outdoor cob oven.
The Internship Program has a tuition fee of $1,750.
Upon acceptance, interns pay a $250 non-refundable deposit to secure their placement. An additional $500 payment is due at New Student Orientation. Two additional payments of $500 are due on June 15 and August 15.
RFC will work with individual interns to set up a payment plan if requested in writing.
Your $1,750 tuition includes $500 for the educational event series, including instructor honoraria, materials and supplies, and other event costs, plus $1,250 for your Chapter Coordinator’s time spent on promotion, developing materials, facilitating orientations and evaluations, coordinating the event series, and administrative costs. Your Chapter Coordinator is available for ongoing check-ins and support throughout the duration of your internship.
Stipend: We pay a monthly stipend. The details of the room, board, and stipend package will be discussed during the interview process.
Housing: We offer room and board for our interns in the form of full-time access to a common building with wood-stove, well-stocked kitchen, wireless internet, a hot shower, bathroom, and washer and dryer. Interns will be provided with individual sleeping quarters either in trailers or bunkhouses. No tobacco smoking is allowed indoors.
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Internship Details: Sun Spirit is one of 18 host farms in the Rogue Farm Corps Internship Program. The RFC Internship Program is a full season entry-level residential program combining hands-on training and skills-based education in sustainable agriculture. As an intern, you will live and train full-time on a host farm, receiving up to 1,500 hours of on-farm training and learning in-depth skills from your mentor. Your residential farm training experience is combined with farm tours, classes, and discussion circles throughout the region, as well as opportunities for independent study. Interns are exposed to a vast array of knowledge and expertise by engaging in the daily life of vibrant, agricultural communities. See Internship Details below or visit our website at https://www.roguefarmcorps.org/internship for more info on the program.