Farmers Market Outreach Associate

Farm Fresh Rhode Island is seeking a part-time Farmers Market Outreach Associate. The Associate will help to ensure communities have awareness of Farm Fresh RI-run farmers markets and understand how to use SNAP and other nutrition incentives at the market. They will help in developing and executing outreach strategies that combine online communications to local organizations with in-person community outreach efforts and volunteer organization. COVID-19 safety protocols will be prioritized at all times. This is a part-time, seasonal position: May through August, 2021.

About our Farmers Markets & Nutrition Incentives Programs
Farmers markets play an important role in increasing the availability and access to local foods. They offer more places for farmers and producers to sell their products, and invite the local community to gather over a variety of delicious, fresh foods in their own neighborhoods. Farm Fresh RI currently operate 7 farmers markets in RI located primarily in areas with limited access to fresh food.

To help make healthy, local options available to low-income shoppers, Farm Fresh RI runs a nutrition incentive program called Bonus Bucks that increases the value of SNAP benefits at farmers markets, CSAs, and farm stands. Today the Bonus Bucks systems offers a dollar-for-dollar match to SNAP shoppers for the purchase of fresh fruits and vegetables. Since 2007, Farm Fresh RI has helped facilitate over $950,000 in SNAP benefits spent with RI farmers and producers and over $600,000 in Bonus Bucks.

Farm Fresh RI also provides support to farmers market customers, vendors and statewide market managers about how to use other federal food assistance programs at RI markets in addition to SNAP, such as WIC and Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program vouchers.

COVID-19 Response
In light of the current COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent job losses, Rhode Island has experienced the highest level of food insecurity recorded in 20 years. The Rhode Island Community Food Bank reported that in 2020 one in four households lacked adequate access to food. The Farmers Market Outreach Associate will play a pivotal role in getting the word out about Bonus Bucks to SNAP recipients.

We are prepared to be as cautious as necessary in the execution of this outreach effort, following all safety guidelines set forth by the State. Our employee’s safety is of utmost importance.

Primary Responsibilities
Key responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:

  • Engaging with community partners involved with increasing food access in the cities of Providence, Pawtucket, Central Falls, and Woonsocket
  • Expanding communications around how to use SNAP/WIC/Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program voucher benefits and Bonus Bucks at farmers markets
  • Participating in building up-to-date lists of RI farmers markets, farm stands, CSAs and home delivery services who accept SNAP benefits and Bonus Bucks
  • Researching and expanding Farm Fresh RI’s presence in relevant online communities and groups
  • Assisting the Communications Director with sharing information/resources on social media
  • Working with Farm Fresh RI’s Volunteer Coordinator to schedule volunteer help to share flyers and posters with community partners or in public spaces
  • Preparing and executing routes and material packets to implement grassroots outreach tactics, such as poster hanging, in neighborhoods where Farm Fresh-run farmers markets are held
  • Managing groups of volunteers to help execute the above

Essential Skills

  • Professional and practical communications skills (written and verbal)
  • Strong interpersonal skills (patience, respect, transparency)
  • Outgoing and able to connect with a range of audiences
  • Experience working in diverse community settings
  • Attention to detail and organizational skills
  • Ability to work independently and self-motivate to complete tasks
  • Comfortability working as part of a remote team, with some in-person duties
  • Ability to manage and motivate volunteers to facilitate grassroots activities (e.g., once a week in-person materials prep and volunteer assignments)
  • Commitment to Farm Fresh RI mission and values
  • Interest in local food systems and food justice
  • Available to work a flexible schedule including some evening and weekends
  • Must have access to reliable transportation to and from Farm Fresh RI in Providence

Preferred Skills
Candidates meeting any of the following criteria will be prioritized.

  • Spanish speaking or non-English language skills
  • Candidates from Providence, Pawtucket and Central Falls
  • Knowledge and experience with community outreach and/or volunteer organizing
  • Comfortability with computers and online tools
  • Exceptional communication skills for reaching diverse audiences

Hours & Benefits

  • Part-time position mid-May through August, 10-15 hours a week, flexible schedule
  • Some evenings and weekends may be required
  • Mileage Reimbursement for work-related use of personal vehicle
  • $15.50 - $17.50/hour

To Apply

  • Please send cover letters and resumes Attn: Cara Mitchell to [email protected] with the subject line “Farmers Market Outreach Associate Application,” or apply online.
  • Final Application deadline: April 30; applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.
  • No phone calls or drop-ins please.

About Farm Fresh Rhode Island
Farm Fresh RI’s mission is to grow a local food system that values the health, environment, and quality of life of the growers and eaters in our region. We envision a Northeast abundant with diverse family farms and fertile soils, with locally and honestly produced foods and flavors at the heart of every table. We offer farmers markets and transparent enterprise systems that help farmers, fishers, and food businesses in the Northeast reach more customers. And we work with the community through outreach, incentives, and educational programs to increase the accessibility and affordability of fresh, local foods.

Farm Fresh Rhode Island is committed to the principle of equal opportunity in employment for all employees. We encourage inquiries 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 Employer.