Farmer in Residence

Powhatan Farmer in Residence: 

 

The Farmer in Residence (FIR) is a season-long, full-time position on Shalom’s 12 acre farm in Powhatan, VA. Under the supervision of the Powhatan Farm Manager and Volunteer & Education Manager, the FIR will have the opportunity to participate in every aspect of our sustainable vegetable farm operation – including leading volunteers and educational visitors – as well as support one or more of our city-based food access programs. FIRs also participate in a robust professional development program including regular readings, discussions, and  field trips to partner farms throughout the season to support the FIR in furthering their education in regenerative farming and food justice.

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Assist with field work as assigned. Typical tasks include sowing, planting, harvesting, amending soil, washing/packing produce, and field preparation/maintenance. 
  • Assist with volunteer and educational groups as needed.
  • Participate in at least one city distribution program.
  • Participate in implementation of crop plan. 
  • Help with the general organization and maintenance of all farm equipment and outbuildings.   
  • Will assist with overseeing interns and volunteers with field work and projects.

Qualities:

  • Strong desire to learn and grow, particularly as a farmer
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills
  • Willingness to work hard in difficult weather conditions
  • Ability to lift 50 lbs or more
  • Ability to multi-task
  • Detail oriented, organized, and able to take initiative. 
  • Commitment to social justice
  • Values diversity and enjoys working with diverse groups, including ability to reach across racial, ethnic, generational, socioeconomic, rural/urban and religious lines
  • Ability to work both alone and with groups

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Lived/personal experience and understanding of the food access barriers and inequity that our partner communities face is strongly preferred. 
  • Farming or gardening experience is strongly preferred.

About Shalom Farms: We are a nonprofit working collaboratively to support healthy communities by growing and sharing healthy food. We work with thousands of volunteers from all backgrounds each year to produce more than 200,000 pounds of produce. We distribute this produce throughout the Richmond area through a variety of programs and partnerships. A small nonprofit organization driven by collaborative processes, curiosity, and relationships.

We are committed to building a diverse workforce that is representative, at all job levels, of the communities where we work, partner, and serve. We recognize that those most affected by food access issues remain significantly underrepresented in our work and in our sector. We strongly encourage applicants from these historically marginalized and underrepresented communities to apply. We believe that diversity and equity among our teammates is critical to our success as an organization and we seek to recruit, develop and retain the most talented people from a diverse candidate pool. 

Schedule: The position starts ASAP and runs until November 23rd, 2021.The FIR will work Monday through Thursday from 8-4:30 every week and  Friday/Saturday mornings (8-12:30) twice per month. (Meaning each month the FIR gets two, 3-day weekends off). FIRs also have 1 week of paid vacation and 4 paid holidays. Workshops, discussions, and readings are all during work hours.

Educational Opportunities: Alongside all of the skills you’ll be learning day to day on the farm, we also offer more formal, sit-down educational experiences. Spring: Bi-weekly readings and discussions covering food access, food sovereignty, and the local food system. Summer: 4 workshops that cover topics of irrigation, pest and disease management, high tunnel operation, and crop planning. Visits to other farms in the region either physically or virtually. Fall: A four week workshop series that studies soil chemistry, soil biology, fertilizer and amendment strategy, and soil test analyzing. 8 weeks of readings that range from soil science to food security and policy. 

Compensation: $1000 (before taxes) monthly living stipend, unlimited farm produce, and shared housing with one other FIR in a modern ‘tiny house” that is in walking distance from the farm. 

To apply for this position, please send a cover letter and resume to Seyra Whitney at farm@shalomfarms.org. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the position is filled. For more information, feel free to email, visit our website www.shalomfarms.org, or find us on Facebook and Instagram (@shalomfarms). 

*This is a new position with a broad focus and is different from the volunteer and ag-focused FIR positions open earlier in 2021. If candidates who applied for the previous positions wish to be considered, simply email farm@shalomfarms.org letting us know. You need not resubmit a cover letter or resume.*

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