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Grow Local Program Assistant - Graduate Internship

Monday, September 9th, 2019 to Thursday, April 30th, 2020 (CT)
The application period has ended or been marked as full. If you attended, let the organizer know by recording your Impact!


Hiring ManagerMia Madison
Memphis Tilth is a nonprofit collective housing like-missioned initiatives for land, food, people, and place. Our mission is to cultivate collective action for an economically sustainable, socially equitable, and environmentally sound local food system. The Grow Local Community Garden Site Coordinator will provide direct support to off-site institutional gardens managed by Memphis Tilth, which includes planning, managing, and maintaining partner gardens. This position also requires collaborative outreach, event, and program planning with institutional partners who host garden sites.

Garden Management and Coordination
  • Act as a liaison between Memphis Tilth and institutional partners who contract with Memphis Tilth to manage their garden sites;
  • Provide assistance with garden designing and planning that fits within the partners' contract scope;
  • Create and manage work plans for institutional garden production, ensuring that produce meets the growth and distribution needs requested by institutional partners;
  • Help institutions distribute garden produce by means identified in the contract;
  • Ensure garden production through seed starting(in greenhouse or direct sow), in-ground planting, building and maintaining garden beds, harvesting, and weighing food;
  • Provide garden maintenance, such as watering, weeding, soil, and pest monitoring, and general site clean-up at various gardens;
  • Build and maintain soil quality through vermiculture and composting practices at garden sites. 
  • If specified in the contract; incorporate native plants, fruit trees, perennials, and pollinator pathways into garden spaces;
  • Provide pollinator installation and management including beekeeping;
  • Participate in seed collection, propagation, and ecological restoration;
  • Produce value-added products from seasonal produce, dehydration, honey extraction, canning, etc.;
  • Guide and direct other GrowMemphis staff who may provide support at institutional garden sites.

Community Engagement & Organizing
  • Help recruit, engage, and maintain garden volunteers, including working with an institution's Volunteer Services team to achieve this goal;
  • Attend and participate in garden volunteer trainings and orientations;
  • Serve as a resource for garden participants and volunteers;
  • Help plan and execute outreach events that are meant to showcase the garden and build stronger ties between the garden and an institution's community;
  • Develop projects and activities for multi-generational engagement in the garden;
  • Provide educational tours of garden sites for an institution's community, patrons, and community partners;
  • Effectively communicate with others the mission and goals of institutional garden sites and Memphis Tilth's partnering role in that garden space.
  • Administer and submit all contract reporting requirements, which may include reimbursements, garden updates, or any other data required to fulfill a contract;
  • Maintain regular communication and attend check-in meetings with institutional staff members who are overseeing a garden partnership contract with
  • Memphis Tilth; Managechannels of garden produce distribution, which may include overseeing an institution's farmers market (managing vendor roster and fees), or coordinating the delivery of garden produce into a food services department, cafeteria, or regular produce subscriptions;
  • Keep accurate written and digital records of garden work done at any site, on any given day; 
  • Help maintain a written and digital record of produce harvested and note trends in produce popularity amongst community members;
  • Maintain an inventory of garden tools and supplies;
  • Save visual records of progress and any activities in the gardens;
  • Track garden and project development using a variety of project management tools including spreadsheets, timelines, and work plans;
  • Support the development and success of all Memphis Tilth programs; attend staff meetings, support events, and other duties.

Required Skills and Experience
  • At least 6 months of demonstrated, hands-on gardening experience (natural growing practices preferred);
  • High School diploma or equivalent;
  • A strong interest in urban agriculture, community gardening, public health, and food access;
  • Experience leading and organizing volunteers of different ages, backgrounds, and skill levels;
  • Experience with diverse populations and sensitivity to power dynamics (gender, race, class, etc.);
  • Highly motivated individual capable of working independently with little supervision;
  • Genuine commitment and sensitivity to residents and community issues;
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills, written and verbal;
  • Good analytical, negotiation, and problem-solving skills;
  • Passion, humility, integrity and empathetic;
  • Proactive, dependable, accountable and approachable;
  • Ability to work a flexible schedule (some weeknights and weekends) and must have reliable transportation;
  • Comfortable performing manual labor outdoors in warm weather;
  • Able to work safely with gardening tools and lift at over 20 pounds;
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office suite;
  • Support the development and success of all Memphis Tilth programs, attend staff meetings, support events, and other duties.
Desired Skills and Experience
  • Degree or certificate in environmental studies, natural sciences, horticulture, agriculture, or ecology;
  • Knowledge of and experience working with local food system issues and a strong affinity for Memphis Tilth mission;
  • Previous experience working at a nonprofit;
  • Ability to provide guidance to people with a wide range of cultural backgrounds, training, and experience;
  • Bilingual, fluent in written and verbal Spanish a plus;
  • Proficient in using computer software and social media.