Orchard Assistant Position Available

Community Harvest Project is a 501(c)3 nonprofit farm with locations in North Grafton and Harvard, Mass. Our mission is to build healthy communities through volunteer farming and nutrition education. Each year our sites host over 8,000 volunteers who work together to grow and donate an average of 270,000 pounds of produce each year to local hunger relief agencies such as the Worcester County Food Bank, Community Servings, and more.

We are currently seeking an Orchard Assistant to work under the direction of our Orchard Manager at our Harvard site, the Prospect Hill Orchard. This 75-acre property includes approximately 30 acres of apples, an acre of peaches, an acre of asparagus, and a small hops yard. The vast majority of our apples are grown for donation and harvest from late August to late October, with a small portion sold to select wholesale partners.

The right candidate will have experience in orchard and/or other agricultural work, will be self-motivated, have a friendly personality, and enjoy working with individuals of all ages and abilities. See below for more information.

Interested applicants should email a cover letter, resume, and 2-3 references to Orchard Manager Susan Conant at susan@community-harvest.org.

Job Description

The Orchard Assistant is responsible for assisting the Orchard Manager by executing all agriculture operations at the Prospect Hill Orchard site and by creating a positive volunteer experience for all visitors.

This is a year-round, blended position with the following hours:

  • 40 hours per week September to April
  • 20 hours per week May to August

Duties and responsibilities

  • Assist in all orchard operations:
    • Execute daily agricultural duties
      • Weeding
      • Mowing
      • High-density maintenance
      • Equipment maintenance
    • Execute harvest duties
      • Picking
      • Processing and packing
      • Delivery
      • Assist with distribution partners
    • Execute skilled/restricted farm activities after necessary training
      • Spraying
      • Pruning
  • Assist in all volunteer operations:
    • Work with Team Leaders to plan volunteer sessions
    • Oversee and work with volunteer groups
    • Provide a positive volunteer experience

Benefits

  • Compensation: $14 per hour
  • Time Off: 15 days of paid time off / 5 days of paid sick time / paid holidays from September 1 to April 30
  • Employer-sponsored health insurance with 50% of coverage paid by CHP
  • Employer-sponsored 401k plan (no match)

Qualifications

  • 2 years of agricultural experience, preferably in an orchard setting
  • 1 year of tractor experience
  • Knowledge of IPM and a Pesticide Applicator License a plus
    • If you do not have a PAL, training will be provided
  • Ability to lift 50 pounds
  • Ability to work in all types of weather including rain and snow
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Positive, self-starting attitude

 

 

 

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2018 Summer Sustainable Farming Internship

Spend your summer working with a leading Central Massachusetts non-profit organization as they continue to improve operations and evaluate farm production.  Learn the basics of non-profit operations, sustainable farming and volunteer organizing while you spend your summer outdoors working with a diverse group of staff and volunteers.  Be part of a dynamic team aiding hunger relief in Worcester County while exploring your future.

Responsibilities
Our Summer Farming Interns will participate fully in all aspects of operating a non-profit volunteer farming organization.  They will have direct hands on engagement in farming over 10 acres of vegetables and 30 acres of fruit trees.  The internship includes working with and leading volunteers in farm activity while gaining valuable leadership and communication skills.  The internship also includes off site visits to partner organizations which allows students an opportunity to learn more about local hunger relief efforts.

Tasks include but not limited to:

  • Assist with farm tasks like maintenance (tending, harvesting, irrigating, mowing, etc.) and lead diverse groups of volunteer farmers in daily operational activities at our farms primarily in North Grafton, MA.
  • Occasional visits to work with our orchard team in Harvard, MA will be required.
  • Assist with maintaining a positive volunteer experience for all who visit the farm
  • Complete a group project that will benefit future operational capability
  • Other tasks as needed

Requirements, qualified applicants will:

  • Have interest and/or some experience in farming or gardening
  • Be an excellent communicator and be able to demonstrate previous leadership responsibility
  • Be able to lift farm equipment and/or produce weighing up to 50 pounds
  • Be prepared for work in outdoor weather conditions, we operate rain or shine
  • Work within a team or independently, be self-motivated, with great attention to detail
  • Have reliable transportation
  • Be available for 35 hours per week, June through August, working primarily morning hours with an occasional late afternoon/early evening or Saturday

Community Harvest Project (CHP), a 501(c)3 organization, is dedicated to improving access to healthy foods through community engagement.  Through their volunteer farming, education, and volunteer programs and partnerships, they bring thousands of community members together each year to build an engaged and healthier Worcester County.  In 2017 working together with over 8,400 volunteers they produced significant fresh produce resources for individuals and families in need throughout our community who otherwise may not have had access.  The produce is donated through numerous partner organizations such as The Worcester County Food Bank, Community Servings Jeremiah’s Inn and The Hector Reyes House.  CHP operates at Brigham Hill Community Farm and White’s Farm in North Grafton, MA and at Prospect Hill Farm in Harvard, MA.

For more information about their programs and impact, please visit www.community-harvest.org.

Contact

To apply send letter of interest and resume via e-mail to Wayne McAuliffe, Volunteer Program Manager, at wayne@community-harvest.org