Internships On Our Local Organic Farm
Grant Farms CSA, located northwest of Fort Collins, Colorado, is a Certified Organic farm that grows over 100 varieties of vegetables and fruit in addition to raising chickens, pigs, turkeys, ducks, and geese. The farm, family-owned and approximately 22 acres, supports a large Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program and is an avid promoter of local food systems that are environmentally, socially and economically sustainable. Our goal is to continue our own diversification and to grow the CSA culture in our region so that even more consumers and farmers can reap the health, economic and social rewards of a deep connection to where their food comes from or goes to.
An intern who commits to Grant Farms CSA has the opportunity to learn a variety of skills and be offered a window onto the changing United States food system and the effort it takes to make those changes. We believe strongly that education is a key to fundamentally changing attitudes about food and farming in the United States. We also believe in the necessity of training and encouraging a new generation of farmers, as well as environmentally and socially aware consumers. So, while we’ll expect interns to work hard and conscientiously, we also expect ourselves to provide a valuable and enjoyable chance to expand one’s experience and perspective.
Internship positions will last 8-9 months, April-December. We have 2-4 internship opportunities for this season. Interns will rotate between different farm duties every 1-2 months, so they will get a strong understanding of all areas of the farm. We will have interns work in the following areas:
- Gardening (prep, design, planting)
- Agriculture (irrigation, soil preparation & conservation, harvesting)
- Orchard and vineyard care and maintenance (pruning FEB, irrigation APRIL, harvesting SEPT)
- Animal care (feeding chickens, hens, pigs, goats, sheep; collecting, washing, & packing eggs)
- CSA packing (preparation & packing of produce, herbs, and products; packing shed management)
- CSA distribution (distribution of produce boxes and other products to customers)
- Customized projects (patios, gazebos, 2017 Solar Project)
- Community organization & leadership
All positions are work-based educational opportunities that adhere to the philosophy that the best way to learn is by doing. What follows is an approximation of the areas you should expect to work in. We want interns to experience the variety of work and develop the skills necessary for operating a farm. Butthis is a farm that exists in reality and you should also expect your experience to be fluid rather than strictly regimented. Flexibility is a key attribute of any successful intern.
In addition to field work, interns will participate in classroom sessions two mornings a month during their term. These sessions may have to do with permaculture principles, community living, specific topics raised in the field, or general group discussions around issues of sustainable agriculture.
- Length of Internship: It is required that you stay through the entire season, including the planting and harvest seasons (starting mid-April), and the CSA season (June -December).
- Housing: Living on the farm is available and encouraged. However, this is not required.
- Hours per Week: 40-50 during April-October (5.5 days per/week); 30-40 during the winter
- Stipend: $600/month (plus room and partial board) for those living on the farm; $800.00/month for those living off farm
- Produce: All interns will receive produce from the farm.
- Trial Period: All interns are subject to a two week trial period and review.
While some previous farm experience is preferred, it is not required. However, all applicants should be committed to the farming ethic and its demands to rise early, be on time, and ready to work in all types of weather, including wind, rain, snow, and summer heat that can reach 90-100 degrees. Part of farming is that some days will be longer and the work heavier than others. Again, flexibility is important as is having a great deal of energy and drive.
Interns should possess the physical ability to work daily with hands, wrist and back, and be able to lift 50 pounds regularly. Excellent people skills and initiative are essential as you will interact with a variety of people each day. Knowing Spanish is a plus, as we have many Spanish-speaking workers.
Grant Farms CSA, like many farms, has a culture unto itself that operates within the larger framework of the farming ethic. Thus, in addition to working hard for long hours we also like to have fun by getting together to cook and eat amazing food, share ideas, and discover what makes and keeps us connected. Finding a good match between what our farm offers and the needs and expectations of an intern are paramount. To that end we ask that if you have interest in an internship position with Grant Farms CSA you e-mail Ann at firstname.lastname@example.org to request an application. When you have completed the application, please e-mail it, along with a resume and 2-3 employer references to email@example.com. Following a review of applications we will set up interviews.