Root Radical CSA is hiring an organic farm worker for the 2018 season! Learn about farming, work hard outside and eat delicious veggies this summer on Howe Island!
ABOUT ROOT RADICAL CSA
Root Radical Community Shared Agriculture (CSA) is a successful small organic farm growing a diversity of vegetables. Entering our 12th season, we sell our vegetables through the CSA model to about 250 households in Kingston and on Howe Island. We are known for our high-quality great-tasting vegetables, our friendly organized and accommodating customer service, and the environmental education opportunities offered to our community.
In the garden, most work is done by hand or with human-powered tools. We use tractors for moving compost and soil mix, preparing the gardens for planting and for other heavy lifting. We use drip irrigation and we do some seed saving. We produce tomatoes, cucumbers, greens and transplants in our 2300 sq. ft. greenhouse.
Root Radical CSA is located on Howe Island between Kingston and Gananoque. The CSA garden is about 2 acres on Doublejay Farm, an organic dairy farm. Doublejay Farm is about 400 acres, including hay fields, permanent pastures, gardens, riverfront and wooded areas. Root Radical CSA is a woman-led farm and Emily Dowling is the main CSA farmer.
We use organic practices. I, Emily, left home during my late teens and early twenties. I traveled and went to university for environmental science. However, I was frustrated with mainstream attitudes about social and environmental issues.
I knew I had to find a way to make a living and I didn’t see many career opportunities that would allow me to make an immediate positive difference.
And then I heard about the Community Shared Agriculture model of farming. I realized that I was in a unique position, having grown up on an organic farm. I decided to start exploring the ways that growing vegetables organically could have positive impact in my community and for the Earth.
Eligibility: This position is funded by Agriculture and Agri-food Canada through the Green Interns program.
- be 30 years old or younger at the start of the project;
- not have participated in any other Youth Employment Strategy programs (ie, Career Focus); and
- be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident
- We are looking for folks who are ready to dig in, get dirty and work hard! We want to work with other committed reliable people who will show up on time and always strive to do their best at work. Applicants must be prepared and willing to work in all sorts of weather conditions.
- Experience in agriculture, completion of an organic farm internship, or work in a related field is a strong asset. Special consideration will be given to those who can demonstrate their commitment to local organic agriculture. Commitment to the full season is required and an openness to come back in 2019 is a plus.
- Having a G or G2 driver’s license and committing to being the main driver for the staff carpool is a must. Having a vehicle is negotiable for this position. A commuting vehicle and ferry pass may be provided for a staff person that has a clean driving record and is able to commit to the vehicle use agreement. Please indicate in your application whether you have your own vehicle or if you would need to have a commuting vehicle provided for you.
On harvest days, the main tasks include harvesting, washing and packing vegetables. The rest of the week we do seeding, greenhouse management, making soil mix, planting, hoeing and hand weeding. In the shoulder seasons we work on infrastructure and ecological projects, garden preparation and clean up. The successful candidate will be trained in most aspects of operating the CSA, however flexibility, dexterity and endurance are required. Must be able to lift and carry heavy bins. Tasks are generally varied but staff are often assigned to areas where they excel.
Schedule: Typically, we start work at 6:45 or 7:30 AM and finish between 3:00 and 4:30 PM depending on the day. Lunch is unpaid and is usually a half hour in length. Whenever possible two 15 minute breaks are incorporated into our day. Full and part time positions available.
Duration of Employment and hours of work: This position starts May 1 and ends in November. Full-time staff must be available to work about 7 to 8 hours a day, 5 days per week during our busy season (early May to mid/late September). Depending on the weather, the number of work hours is reduced in spring and fall (in early May and again from mid/late September to November). Please see the note below about weather dependent work.
Weather: On harvest days, we work rain or shine. However, our other work (planting, weeding, etc.) can be weather dependent. There may be some days when we would not work because of heavy rain that day or the day before. In exceptional weather circumstances, during our busiest times in the season, staff may be asked to work weekends to make up for days missed during the week due to inclement weather.
Hours/Week: 35 to 40 hours/week
Wage: $14/hour + vegetables (your very own weekly CSA share plus lots of 2nds and leftovers if you want)
Help with transportation for the right candidate (see requirements above)
INTANGIBLE BENEFITS OF WORKING AT ROOT RADICAL
Farming is hard work but working at Root Radical CSA also has benefits including:
- Lots of high quality, organic vegetables to eat. Staff receive CSA shares and have access to seconds and leftovers.
- Work-life balance. Weekend work is not required and farm staff finish between 3:30 and 4:30 PM most days. Additionally, we are a farm that structures breaks into our daily schedule and we are a team that co-ordinates and plans ahead so that days off for staff to recharge are an option.
- Diversity of work. Working on a small acreage with a diverse set of crops means less monotony and doing a lot of different kinds of tasks throughout the week and as the seasons shift.
- Teamwork. Being a part of a team of self-motivated, hardworking, caring people who are nice to be around. We have structured team building activities and make a point of celebrating together throughout the season.
- Learning. Opportunity to master farming skills and to be rewarded with incremental wage increases as you develop those skills.
- Responsibility. Keeping the work interesting and challenging by finding your niche on the farm and taking on areas of responsibility and/or working on your own side-projects. We encourage staff to take on additional responsibility when they are ready.
- Clear expectations. As part of the hiring process, an eight-page document is provided explaining how to succeed at Root Radical. Throughout the season, we meet regularly as a team to share weekly work goals.
- Outdoor work. Being out in beautiful weather (most of the time), and not sitting at a desk.
- Pride in your work. Doing important work, raising great organic vegetables for local people who really appreciate good food and their farmers.
- Challenges. Becoming stronger both physically and mentally by challenging yourself.
- Building a better world. Contributing in a very real way to environmental and social justice. Helping a local family farm succeed.
- Ecological connection. Learning about ecology first hand and deepening your relationship with the land that feeds you.
To apply please email your resume and cover letter to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Or post your resume and cover letter to: Emily Dowling, 3 Lower Side Rd., Gananoque, ON, K7G 2V6