Farm Direct Food Security AmeriCorps VISTA — Full Year

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Farm Fresh Rhode Island seeks an outgoing and enthusiastic Farm Direct Food Security AmeriCorps VISTA with demonstrated initiative and clear organizational communication skills to increase awareness and understanding of how to use USDA food assistance programs to support local agriculture and food businesses. An integral part of Farm Fresh Rhode Island’s team, the farmers market program believes that the root cause of hunger is poverty — and therefore increasing local economic opportunities must be a part of hunger relief solutions. This position offers a unique opportunity to educate businesses and social service agencies about how to invest federal dollars in local economies and agriculture, creating more jobs and healthier, more resilient communities. This position requires a one-year commitment to begin mid-March, 2021. Application deadline is February 4, 2021. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Support efforts to enhance capacity for farmers markets, CSAs, and farm stands that accept USDA food assistance programs.
  • Identify strengths and challenges for farmers currently accepting USDA food assistance programs.
  • Update trainings for farmers and market managers on facilitating USDA food assistance programs onsite.
  • Update toolkits and printed resources for farmers and market managers on facilitating USDA food assistance programs onsite.
  • Foster networking across outlets currently utilizing USDA food assistance programs at farmers markets, CSAs, and farm stands.
  • Review Farm Fresh RI farmers market outreach sites to identify new partnership and outreach opportunities with a focus on partner social service agencies.
  • Develop outreach and awareness presentations to foster engagement in the concept of using USDA food assistance programs to support local agriculture.
  • Pilot outreach presentations for local social service agencies, and evaluate participant awareness and overall effectiveness.
  • Review current Farm Fresh RI strategies for recruiting and sustaining volunteers, and apply them to farmers market program volunteer development.
  • Enhance Farm Fresh RI volunteer onboarding practices to foster volunteer engagement in farmers market support activities.
  • Consistently engage with community stakeholders to encourage volunteer participation in farmers market activities.
  • Create how-to guide for managing volunteers in outreach and farmers market programs.

Skills Required

  • Excellent professional communication skills (written and verbal)
  • Great attention to detail
  • Self-starter and ability to maintain a self-motivating attitude
  • Ability to collaborate and work as part of a team
  • Excellent time-management skills
  • Ability to think, react, iterate, and redirect in a fast-paced environment
  • Proficient with Microsoft Office Suite
  • Ability to prioritize and handle a variety of assignments simultaneously in a vibrant work environment
  • Spanish or other language skills a plus
  • Willingness to work hands-on in various environments (outdoors at markets, inside at office)
  • Able to bend and lift loads up to 50 pounds
  • Must have a valid drivers license and access to reliable transportation (Mileage reimbursement will be provided for personal vehicle use.)

About AmeriCorps VISTA
AmeriCorps is a network of national service programs, made up of three primary programs that each take a different approach to improving lives and fostering civic engagement. AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) members bring passion and perseverance where the need is greatest: to organizations that help eradicate poverty. AmeriCorps VISTA members serve as a catalyst for change, living and working alongside community members to meet our nation’s most pressing challenges and advance local solutions.

AmeriCorps VISTA Member Benefits

  • Bi-weekly living allowance of $513.94
  • Student loan deferment
  • Mileage reimbursement
  • Professional development opportunities
  • CNCS health benefit & childcare assistance
  • $6,345 Segal Education Award upon completion of service to help pay for college, graduate school, or vocational training, or to repay student loans

To Apply
This is a full-year position starting March 15, 2021. Application deadline is February 4, Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

  • Applications must be submitted through this AmeriCorps VISTA site. Farm Fresh Rhode Island cannot accept applications directly. To apply: please go to this site and review the AmeriCorps VISTA information.
  • Then go to this web page and click “Search Listings.” For the search, select the “Rhode Island” and “AmeriCorps VISTA” options.
  • Scroll until you find this position, click on it, and choose “Apply Now.” Submit your application including two references.

Farm Fresh RI Foundational & Organizational Outcomes

As an organization, we feel it is important that all employees in all programs of Farm Fresh Rhode Island are expected to uphold the following outcomes in addition to their specific job responsibilities:
  • Diversity, Inclusion, & Respect: All staff and volunteers are committed to equality in the workplace, demonstrate respect for each other and those we serve, and work to create a more equitable food system.
  • Food Safety: Certifications are maintained and standard operating procedures are followed to ensure safe food handling at all times.
  • Health & Safety: Staff, volunteers, and visitors are safe in our office, café, and at all program sites. Staff and volunteers feel safe and supported in the workplace.
  • Food Systems Knowledge: All workers can speak about local, sustainable, and equitable food system development and understand how Farm Fresh RI programs address different aspects of these topics.
  • Service Orientation: Staff and volunteers are helpful and respectful in all interactions with each other and with all constituents of all Farm Fresh RI programs.

Farm Fresh Rhode Island is committed to the principle of equal opportunity in employment for all employees. We encourage enquiries from candidates who will enrich and contribute to the cultural and ethnic diversity of our organization. Farm Fresh RI does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, creed, color, religion, marital status, gender, sexual orientation, veteran status, national origin, or disability status in employment or programming. Farm Fresh Rhode Island is an Equal Opportunity Provider.

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