YA APPRENTICESHIP 2022: MOOSE JAW, SK – WAKAMOW FREE FOOD FARM

Posted by Sara Yagelniski on December 14, 2021

Have you dreamed of growing lots of good vegetables for low or no income folks? The dream is real with the Wakamow Free Food Farm, they service the community with naturally grown veggies! Learn to garden with knowledgeable and kind people in the structure of a non-profit model. Come in the beautiful Wakamow Valley to garden all season long in 2022!

ABOUT THE WAKAMOW FREE FOOD FARM

Wakamow Free Food Farm is located in Moose Jaw, SK– Treaty 4 Territory

The Free Food Farm is a one acre piece of land located within the city limits of Moose Jaw. They produce between 8000-16000 lbs of food each year that gets directly donated to members in the community who are in need of food including the MJ Food Bank, The Misson, Transition House, the Multicultural Center and Hunger in Moose Jaw. This year the crew partnered with an elementary school in Moose Jaw to use a new geodesic greenhouse where they will be starting all of our seedlings for the garden. SO COOL! This farm has been in operation since 2015. There is also a one acre orchard that they plan to revamp and turn into a productive food forest. Their goals include empowering people to continue being stewards of the land. 

 

About the apprenticeship:

The apprenticeship will provide the learner with lots of skills including: growing and distributing vegetables. Everything from growing seedlings in the greenhouse, prepping the soil, planting seedlings, weeding, harvesting, and delivering. The crew will also be working on a food forest project (skills in perennial fruit production). There will also be opportunities to learn about composting, natural fertilizers, natural pest management techniques, minimal tillage. At farm they use “beyond-organic” growing methods.

As part of the apprenticeship, you will meet with other apprentices across Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Alberta who are part of the Young Agrarians Apprenticeship program. Field days, learning opportunities and potlucks will be planned with the Manitoba group at each hosts farm.  You will also be invited to attend a regenerative or organic food conference during or following the apprenticeship.

About the farm mentors:

Keri Fox is the farm manager and Maisie is the main lead hand. With Keri as the main mentor, the apprentice will be working with both Keri and Maisie (who are both lovely people).

Keri has been managing the Free Food Farm since 2019. Prior to that she owned and operated an urban market garden called Green Sister Gardens from 2012-2019. She enjoys the outdoors and loves growing plants. She is knowledgeable, patient, and kind and is very passionate about sustainability and regenerative practices. Keri is great to work for and there is much fun to be had as well!

Skills this farm has to teach:

The following skills are being offered by this farm. While you’ll get exposure to many of these areas, it is likely that not all will be covered. Apprentices will work to identify the skills they want to develop through a learning plan with the host farm.  

vegetable production weeding techniques, garden maitenance
growing food for a non-profit garden mapping, crop planning
working with volunteers cleaning, weighing, packing veggies
direct seeding, transplanting fertility, natural fertilizer
greenhouse / bedding plant production food forest, perenial fruit production

 

Skill required of the apprentice:

*Driver’s license an asset.
*Is passionate about plants and growing food.
*Someone who wants to continue to care for the land after the work at the Free Food Farm.
*Is able to work independently.
*Suitable, all-weather work clothes, boots, and gloves.

Housing, Stipend and Duration:

*The farm is in the city, so the apprentice will need to  find their own accommodations. Support with this process can be provided if needed.

*The apprentice will receive a weekly box of veggies harvested from the farm.

*Wage is $15 per hour.  The crew typically works 5-8 hours per day Monday-Friday.

*Weekends are off, and they can accommodate a week or two off during the season as long as it is cleared well in advance.

*May 1st to September 30th.

About the Community and Land:

Moose jaw is a wonderful place to spend your summer. The Wakamow Valley is beautiful, folks can kayak or canoe in the winding river and find nature right in the city. Also the valley has great bike or running trails. There is a thriving local food scene with the farmers markets and The Wandering Market where you can find all sorts of local food!
Also, Moose Jaw has a mineral spa right in the city! It’s affordable and great to revive your achy gardening muscles.

“I acknowledge that we operate on the traditional, ancestral and unceded lands of the Cree, Ojibwe(OJIB-WĒ), Saulteaux (SO-TO), Dakota, Nakota, Lakota, and on the homeland of the Métis Nation. We show our respect for this land and its people by committing to giving back in ways that honour and support the Cree, Ojibwe(OJIB-WĒ), Saulteaux (SO-TO), Dakota, Nakota, Lakota, and the Métis Nation Peoples.” Keri Fox

Young Agrarians recognizes the unresolved Indigenous land title and rights in the diverse territories in what is today called Canada. As we live and work in the context of and in response to a colonial system of laws and policies, it is important to acknowledge the historical and ongoing impact of agriculture and land enclosure on Indigenous lands and food systems. In this context, we acknowledge our collective responsibility to position Indigenous Peoples and their experiences with coloniality, in a narrative of reconciliation that places ecology, land stewardship, and Indigenous land title and rights at the forefront – if we are to sustain the Earth’s ecosystems in today’s rapidly changing climate.

Our deepest hope is that the future of our food systems is diverse, interconnected, and resilient, embraces people of all walks of life and sustains the water, plants, and creatures in ways that benefit and work alongside Indigenous Peoples and narratives and ways of knowing and caring for the land.

This farm, like many others, is surrounded by agricultural cultivated land, uncultivated land, Indigenous people and voices from non-settler walks of life. We encourage everyone to build relationship with the land and community that surrounds the place where you will be learning.

More Details about this Apprenticeship and How to Apply 

Deadline to apply > January 31, 2022

Contact Sara (program coordinator) for questions: manitoba@youngagrarians.org

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.