Farm Training Coordinator

Who We Are

Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden (“Snug Harbor”) offers dynamic programming in the arts, horticulture, agriculture, education and recreation for diverse cultures and all ages, on a historic, welcoming campus that is a unique oasis in New York City. We envision being a nationally visible yet locally impactful cultural organization beloved by all who visit. We value artistic vibrancy, stewardship, conservation, inclusion, community, communication and discovery. Located less than 1.5 miles from the Staten Island Ferry and easily accessible by public transportation, Snug Harbor welcomes nearly 500,000 visitors each year to explore our gardens, grounds and galleries. Our 83-acre campus features 26 architecturally significant buildings and 14 distinctive gardens, including a traditional Chinese garden and a Tuscan garden. A vibrant cultural hub, Snug Harbor is also home to several non-profit institutions, artists’ studios and small businesses. Founded in the 19th century as a charitable rest home for sailors, today Snug Harbor is a growing, must-see destination.

This position is filled through NYC Civic Corps NYC Civic Corps, an AmeriCorps program launched in 2009 by NYC Service, recruits and places AmeriCorps members to serve full-time from November, 2020 to July, 2021 at select nonprofit organizations. NYC Civic Corps members build, develop, and grow stronger volunteer programs by recruiting, managing, and engaging volunteers to address impact areas that are priorities of New York City such as:

● Disaster Services
● Economic Opportunity
● Education & Youth Development
● Environmental Stewardship
● Public Health

Go to NYC Civic Corps for more information and to apply.

Position: Summary

Snug Harbor sees volunteer engagement as a crucial component of our organization’s vision, seeking to meaningfully engage and develop our community, building civic mindedness through transformative experiences in the arts and sciences. To expand service and build capacity, we rely upon volunteers from many facets of our community, from college and high school interns, probationers, senior citizens, cognitively challenged emerging adults, and other devoted local supporters. The incoming AmeriCorps member will focus on developing supports for service on the Heritage Farm, mainly a training manual including standard operating procedures, policies, and procedures, and provide continuing point of contact for volunteer service on the Farm. The Farm Training Coordinator (FTC) will also support the Service Coordinator in development and implementation of Snug Harbor’s volunteer management system, specifically structuring volunteer service on Heritage Farm.

The AmeriCorps member will join a fast-paced team of urban farmers, acting as a learning leader in the field, working with farmers and volunteers to plant, harvest and maintain our 2.5 acre production farm. The FTC will drive volunteer onboarding and support on the Farm while working with the Service Coordinator in volunteer outreach. After mastering skill sets and understanding how task sets support the larger goals of farm operations, the FTC will serve as a volunteer leader, supervising skills acquisition in the field. Skills include seeding, thinning, transplanting, weeding, harvesting, and composting. The FTC will also serve to expand volunteership on the grounds by guiding Farm volunteers into expanded service with the Horticulture and Visitor Services teams. Heritage Farm staff work in all weather conditions (including rain and extreme heat), while maintaining a fast and efficient pace. While previous experience in farming is helpful, it is not required. Anyone with a strong work ethic and deep interest in learning about sustainable small-scale agriculture through hands-on experience should apply.

Snug Harbor will rely on the FTC to oversee development of a Farm-dedicated training manual, as well as continually assess volunteer and departmental capacity and impact. The FTC will focus on the following: develop a Heritage Farm training manual; maintain the Heritage Farm volunteer schedule; and streamline tracking of skills acquisition. We expect additional tools and policy needs will emerge in the course of the member’s service. In order to onboard volunteers safely, the training manual will develop standard operating procedures, policy, and protocol in reference to Department of Labor and Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations specific to Farm service. The volunteer schedule will be maintained in continuous communication with the Engagement Department’s Service Coordinator.

In order to establish the fullest understanding of Heritage Farm’s operations and role in the community, the FTC will also participate in planning, administration, production, produce distribution, organics collection, and compost processing.

Responsibilities

Under supervision of the Farm Manager, the Farm Training Coordinator will:

  • Identify volunteer gaps to address through outreach
  • Review, identify, and develop resources for volunteers, including training materials, checklist, manual, etc.
  • Create a Heritage Farm Training Manual
  • Manage volunteer training for new volunteers
  • Serve as an internal resource for Heritage Farm staff on coordinating volunteer groups, providing logistics and management support • Increase impact through continuous assessment of volunteer service
  • Ensure all volunteer attendance is tracked and updated weekly
  • Track progress of volunteer service
  • Assist Farm Manager and Director of Engagement in quarterly volunteer assessments
  • Identify and document return volunteers and groups for regular recognition
  • Manage volunteer group schedules and distribute weekly volunteer schedules
  • Create volunteer information sessions for potential volunteers to learn more about the roles volunteers can play at the Heritage Farm
  • Create work plans and schedules for volunteer projects
  • Analyze volunteer surveys to implement volunteer feedback
  • Gain competencies in the following skills with supervision and support from the Farm Leads and/or Farm Manager: transplant, thin, propagate, direct seed, weed, harvest, and wash produce for our CSA and markets; organics collection and compost processing; production tracking
  • Communicate the vision and goals of SHHF professionally with fellow staff, volunteers, customers, and visitors on the farm and at CSA market days
  • Ability to manage multiple tasks at once while managing your time well
  • Ability to lift 50lbs regularly and be able to stand, squat, kneel, bend, and crouch for extended periods of time • Ability to work outdoors in all weather conditions
  • Experience working outdoors in a physically demanding role
  • Ability to learn new tasks quickly and execute them immediately
  • Interest in learning about small scale intensive agriculture and the techniques used in organic farming
  • Ability to following all safety protocols
  • Committed to being an active and flexible member of a small team

Required Skills for AmeriCorps Members (set for all program members)

  • Strong commitment to national service and the mission of the host site
  • Desire to work in the non-profit sector
  • Desire to serve with diverse communities
  • Excellent organizational and communication skills
  • Ability to conduct community outreach and make presentations to community groups
  • Willingness to take initiative to achieve goals
  • Strong project management/multi-tasking abilities
  • A clear plan for living on the AmeriCorps stipend in New York City
  • Availability to lead and/or attend events during evening and weekend hours
  • Minimum high school diploma or equivalency
  • Ability to pass a criminal background check
  • US Citizen or lawful permanent resident (AmeriCorps regulations)

Preferred Academic or Experience Qualifications, Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • Interest in agro ecology, urban planning, and/or workforce development
  • Familiarity with Excel
  • Familiarity with Google Suite, especially Google Drive, Google Sheets, and Google Docs

TO APPLY: Qualified candidates should go to NYC Civic Corps to apply.

Snug Harbor celebrates and commits to fostering diversity, equity and inclusion. We value and seek the strengths of human variety across communities, in programming, with staff, the Board of Directors, volunteers, artists and visitors. Snug Harbor strives to build a culture of diversity of voice and representation, authentically inclusive spaces and equity for all. Snug Harbor is an Equal Opportunity Employer.