Internship

img_20191120_124905260 Good Rain Farm Internship Program

This Internship curriculum has been approved by and was granted Washington Farm Internship Project Certification by the States Dept. of Labor & Industries Farm Internship Project Coordinator.

Our internships provide a unique opportunity for tuition free, hands on, experiential learning on a working farm. Farm Interns have the opportunity to participate in all components and tasks necessary in operating a small market farm, from growing crops from seed to harvest, caring for the farm livestock and selling farm produce. 

Farm interns leave ready to work on a sustainable mixed-vegetable farm as a Crew Member. Some people will use this program to decide whether to pursue a future in farming while others gain skills and perspective that they go on to use in their careers as educators, chefs, gardeners, social workers and at non-profit organizations. 

This is a new and developing Internship Program, as such I ask for your patience, grace and support in developing and honing in the internship program in an effort to continue to improve and strengthen the program together. Internships Start in May and End in October.  

You will need to be able to commit Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday for the Internship. Thursdays and Saturdays will be available as make-up days should an Intern call in sick, experience scheduling conflicts, etc. For her efforts, Michelle asks for consistent and committed individuals who show up on-time, communicate well and in advance and support her in her efforts to balance getting the farm work done and develop and offer the educational component of the internship. Farm interns support Farmer Michelle in caring for the diversified vegetable crops, fruit trees and livestock. Interns rarely work independently and instead spend most of their time alongside Michelle. Additionally, farm interns will join and support volunteers and other work parties relating to the conservation projects underway on the Farm.

A DESCRIPTION OF ACTIVITIES

On the farm Michelle does weekly farm walks where we make notes of disease, watering, planting, harvesting, repair, and generate ideas of improvement or experimentation. You will be seeding, transplanting, weeding, and involved in field and bed prep activities. We keep track of and record many farm tasks on various forms. There is always a trellis to build a fence to repair a project that needs to be built out. You’ll spend some time with power tools. Animal chores are also a large part of our farm duties, anything from daily health and care, socialization, training to slaughter and butchering. All activities are challenge by choice.

Daily occurring chores are on a monthly rotation. Husbandry Duties, Green House care, Irrigation and Field Prep.

A typical work day:

Days begin 7-8am (weather influenced) and end between 1-2pm with a 30 min lunch and one 15 minute mid morning break.

MORNING: Rotation Chores, followed by seeding, harvesting, transplanting/direct seeding.

AFTERNOON: Rotation Chores, One or two folx head off to wash & pack, Bed prep and weeding, construction projects.

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Pick-ups/Drop-Offs occur on Thursdays. You are welcome to attend and be present. The farm as various locations that we sort and drop off at.

Friday/Saturday/Sunday off unless prior arrangements are made. Occasionally workshops, field trips, volunteer days will be offered on these days or a small time commitment on Farm may be requested by Farmer Michelle.

We may occasionally help out at other farms to learn their techniques, strategies and workflow. Each day, Farmer Michelle, will need to spend time marketing, accounting and accomplishing farm errands.

Good Rain Farm aims to provide a farming experience that is inclusive, particularly for women and people of color. Nationwide, the average age of a farmer is 60-years-old, 85% of farmers are men, 95% of farmers are white. Many other groups are underrepresented. This disparity in representation is due to racism (particularly white supremacy), sexism, and classism, and therefore we encourage people of color, women, LGBTQ people, religious minorities, recent immigrants and applicants from different generational, economic and educational backgrounds to apply. This farm internship program is designed for people with little or no experience farming. Farm interns rarely work independently and instead spend most of their time being mentored by Farmer Michelle, a white passing Native Sinixt, cis-gender female. Please keep this in mind as to how this may shape your learning experience. 

We seek to provide an economically-viable alternative to “conventional agriculture.” We adopt a view of food sovereignty. Farms should be responsible members of their communities. Farms should improve community resilience and self-reliance. Farms should foster healing connections with the land. We seek to reform conventional farming practices that depend heavily on machinery, chemicals and exploited labor. Conventional agriculture damages land, air and water; harms the health of communities that consume the food grown; and harms the workers who feed our communities.

Time commitment

  • 3, 6 hour days a week 
  • 2 hours of education time will be provided.

Responsibilities

  • Field Work: Most field work at Good Rain Farm is done by hand, and includes seeding, planting, weeding, watering, trellising, harvesting, hauling, washing, and packing produce for sale
  • Animal Care: Watering, feeding, cleaning, and care of rabbits, donkeys and Farm cat.
  • General Farm Maintenance: Tool and equipment care, farm and property upkeep
  • Summer and Fall tasks will differ, please inquire for more information

Qualifications 

  • Interest in gardening or farming.
  • Ability to lift and carry 50 pounds, farm outdoors in all weather conditions and perform the above responsibilities.
  • Attitude: Positive, driven, flexible and team-oriented.

Benefits: This is an unpaid volunteer internship, room and board are not provided

  • Hands-on training in small-scale, sustainable farming practices
  • 48 hours workshop instruction in sustainable farming practices
  • 1 CSA food share during internship dates

Curriculum

Education is a core component of this internship. Interns will learn the underlying ergonomics of farm work. Proper ergonomics are essential for an economically-viable farm. Speed, stamina and efficiency allow a small farm to compete when other farms lower their costs with machinery, chemicals, and exploited labor. Hands-on experience in a wide variety of tasks will be provided. The internship also includes 48 hours of classroom instruction on topics including crop planning, irrigation, seed saving, and soil fertility. Interns will be provided with practical knowledge for planning and starting your own small scale farming project. Weekly field seminars and hands-on learning help Interns gain a deeper understanding of horticultural and farm management skills including, but not limited to the list below. 

Feel free to review the following list of class topics HERE and let Farmer Michelle know which ones you’d like to focus on within the application. Please plan for one class per week as we have many farm tasks to get done regularly. Classes may include homework, research, readings and discussion as well as experience on the farm in practical application. Classes may be front and back loaded onto the season so that during the height of physical demand and weather opportunity we are out in the fields working 

Farmer Bio