APPRENTICESHIP: KOOTENAY BAY, BC – Yasodhara Ashram

Posted by Moss Dance on March 09, 2018

Yasodhara Ashram

Become a part of a flourishing spiritual community at Yasodhara Ashram this summer as part of the Garden or Preserving Kitchen Learning Residency!

ABOUT YASODHARA ASHRAM

At the Ashram we have 1.5 acres of mixed vegetable market gardening, with a further 2 acres of established orchard growing a number of heirloom varieties. Emphasis is placed on organic full cycle food production, from soil amendment and bed preparation to crop rotation, succession and companion planting. We follow permaculture principles and practice composting, seed saving, beekeeping, and more. We use a 1,000 square foot mobile hoop house to support a three to four season growing period. The farm is a key part of the ashram community, offering a rich learning environment. Participants in the Learning Residency program support the day to day food flow as well as learn about their own personal growth and spiritual development.

The land here has been cultivated for over 30 years with love and care for the local and wider environment. With a focus on balancing what we take out with what we give back, we recognize the primary importance of soil fertility. We are not certified organic but the majority of seed and amendments we use are organic. The Yasodhara Ashram Garden and Preserving Kitchen Learning Residencies are intended for individuals who want to broaden and deepen their understanding of organic sustainable agriculture, food preservation and the practice of Karma Yoga. Karma Yoga is the practice of selfless service, and is an essential part of life at Yasodhara Ashram. The farm is a key part of the ashram community, offering a rich learning environment. Participants in the Learning Residency program support the day to day food flow as well as learn about their own personal growth and spiritual development.

For more info: http://www.yasodhara.org/karma-yoga/learning-residencies

Yasodhara Ashram

DESIRED QUALITIES

Some gardening experience and familiarity with organic production methods is preferred but not essential. Important qualities are an open mind, a positive disposition and interest in living and learning within a spiritual community. Students in education, agriculture, environmental sciences, and related fields are encouraged to apply. Some of the skills below can be acquired through the program, however previous experience is an asset: Technical Knowledge of plants, soil, compost and pest management Interest and knowledge about food and sustainability

  • Knowledge and proficiency to support overall fertility and plant management (e.g. crop rotation, amendment application, companion planting)
  • Knowledge and proficiency in greenhouse management (seeding, planting and transplanting) Ability to work with a team to prioritize and oversee daily, weekly and seasonal activities (weeding, planting, harvesting, record keeping)
  • Physical requirements
  • Ability to work hard physically outdoors in all seasons (heat, sun, rain, cold)
  • Experience with tools and machinery can be helpful
  • Interpersonal Leadership and Communication Ability to make work meaningful by encouraging an atmosphere for reflection and spiritual practice, embodying the spirit of Karma Yoga High level of personal motivation and self-management
  • Ability to lead karma yogis with daily projects or tasks (planning, preparing, overseeing, checking in and follow through until completion)
  • Ability to effectively communicate and coordinate with Food Flow areas (preserving kitchen, orchard, kitchen) during a busy season
  • Ability to maintain on-going open communication with Garden Manager
  • An attitude of service, a positive disposition and an interest in living and learning within a spiritual community.

Yasodhara Ashram

APPRENTICESHIP TASKS

Working with plants, soil, compost and pest management learn to support overall fertility and plant management (e.g. crop rotation, amendment application, companion planting) greenhouse management (seeding, planting and transplanting) work with a team to prioritize and oversee daily, weekly and seasonal activities (weeding, planting, harvesting, record keeping) lead volunteers and guests with daily projects or tasks (planning, preparing, overseeing, checking in and follow through until completion) effectively communicate and coordinate with Food Flow areas (preserving kitchen, orchard, kitchen) during a busy season maintain on-going open communication with Garden Manager There may be opportunities to work with garden design and construction should seasonal projects call for these skills.

APPRENTICESHIP DETAILS

The season is divided into three three-month periods: Apr 3 –Jun 25 – initiation – seeding, transplanting, preparing beds, harvesting spring crops May 29 – Aug 20 – maintenance – harvesting, weeding, redefining edges, seeding fall crops Jul 24 – Oct 15 – fruition – harvesting long season crops and orchard fruit, amending soil, repairing structures, preparing the garden for winter.

Apprentices will work 40hrs/week.

Yasodhara Ashram

EDUCATION

This is an experiential learning program, with the Garden Manager and garden team working alongside the Learning Residents, demonstrating and mentoring, as well as encouraging independence and initiative. Learning Residents are supported and mentored as they step into leadership roles. Half day yoga and self development workshops are offered each week.

The Ashram Garden has a library of resource books available, as well as on site community members with experience in a range of skills. We have a large archive from past years documenting previous seasons and projects.

ACCOMMODATION

Accommodations are single or shared rooms in residential buildings, and Learning Residents take part in the ashram daily schedule. All meals are provided and have vegetarian and vegan options. Meals are eaten in the main dining room. We are often able to cater to special dietary restrictions.

TO APPLY

Please submit your resume, cover letter and completed application form to: servicelearning@yasodhara.org

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