Farm Apprentices Wanted in Oregon: Chickadee Farm in Talent, OR is seeking 3 apprentices for the 2016 season.
Chickadee Farm is a certified organic family farm specializing in high quality vegetable seed and produce grown using organic and biodynamic methods. Chickadee Farm is owned and managed by Kelly Gelino and Sebastian Aguilar who have been farming since 1997 and have trained many new farmers along the way. We take our role in the apprenticeship model seriously and we dedicate ourselves to being valuable educators and mentors for our apprentices. Our farm is 13 acres spread over four fields of which 3-4 acres are cropped, 3-4 are cover-cropped and the balance is in pasture. We grow primarily vegetable seed (70%) for seed companies with the balance (30%) as fresh vegetables for local grocers. Our farming style is small-scale intensive while using tractors for tillage and cultivation. Our farm goals include enhancing the farm’s ecology, making the farm efficient and profitable and being a positive social force for our community.
Internship Details: Our goal each year is to help our apprentices develop both a thorough understanding of, and practical skills in, all aspects of our farm operation – in the hopes that by the end of the season, they’ll have the capacity to assist in co-management of the farm. To accomplish this, we take a weekly farm walk where we observe and discuss the changes and needs of the entire farm, as well as teach a weekly class where we discuss the concepts that guide our practical work. Classes cover a wide range of farm production and farm business topics, including soil science, irrigation design and management, crop planning, financial planning, record keeping and more. In-field demonstrations and discussions for each new task ensure that apprentices understand the goals, factors, strategies and potential challenges of each farm task. Our goal is that apprentices become confident and adept in accomplishing all farm tasks efficiently and successfully. In exchange for our efforts to educate, we expect apprentices to be passionate about farming and dedicate themselves to working hard to ensure the farm’s success, learning as much as possible and contributing to creating a positive farm atmosphere.
Internship Starts: March 1st, 2016
Internship Ends: October 31st, 2016
App Deadline: until filled
Minimum Length of Stay: 8 months
Educational Opportunities: We have many years of educator experience and have trained 38+ apprentices over the years. Many of them have also returned for a second year and many of them have started their own farms. For three years, Sebastian was the lead instructor and farm manager for the Organic Farm School, an 8-month new farmer training program located in WA state.
Meals: Apprentices live independently and generally cook for themselves. Farm food is available.
Skills Desired: As an advanced apprenticeship, we give priority to applicants who have farming experience though experience is not required. The most important qualifications are a passion for learning, a dedication to working hard, good social skills and a positive attitude.
Stipend: Apprentices receive housing and a weekly living stipend in addition to education and farm produce.
Housing: We have a small cabin, a dome and a trailer for apprentices.
How to Apply: Please email us a letter describing 1) what your long-term farm goals are, 2) what your goals are for the 2016 season, 3) your experience in agriculture and 4) a short bio. We will then set up a phone interview.
Contact: Sebastian Aguilar