Farm Fresh Rhode Island seeks an articulate and organized Volunteer & Community Engagement AmeriCorps VISTA with demonstrated initiative and strong logistical and communications skills to assist programs organization-wide in outreach efforts and engaging, qualifying, and retaining reliable volunteers. As an integral part of the Farm Fresh RI team, this position will be responsible for understanding and communicating our needs to potential volunteers, creating strategies to attract and recruit new volunteers, implementing and improving on existing procedures for managing volunteer interest and scheduling shifts, facilitating trainings, developing tactics for thanking and retaining volunteers, tabling at community events, and generally being ready to problem-solve as the needs of volunteers and our programs evolve and shift with the seasons.
This position offers a unique opportunity to increase community engagement through volunteer recruitment, training, management, appreciation and retention to help Farm Fresh RI achieve its mission to strengthen farm vitality, reduce poverty, and increase food security in Rhode Island. AmeriCorps VISTA members must commit to a full year of service from January 17, 2023 to January 16, 2024. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Deadline to apply is December 1, 2022. Note: We are accepting candidates on a rolling basis and are flexible in negotiating start dates. One year of service is required, but for example service term could run 12/5/2022 to 12/4/2023.
- Assist programs organization-wide in engaging, qualifying, and retaining reliable volunteers.
- Develop strategies to reach and recruit new people to join in volunteering.
- Be responsible for understanding and communicating Farm Fresh needs to potential and existing volunteers in ongoing direct communications and monthly e-newsletter.
- Work with Communications Director to incorporate volunteer-related messaging on social media and in other communications vehicles.
- Implement procedures for managing volunteer interest and work with program managers to connect volunteers with matching opportunities program-wide.
- Participate in some volunteer shifts for hands-on experience, and help with community outreach—which may consist of tabling at events and providing outreach materials for volunteer recruitment as well as to promote Farm Fresh programs and services.
- Improve overall volunteer management processes to create a sustainable, ongoing pipeline of volunteers for all of the organization’s programs.
- Act as primary point of contact for volunteers: answering questions, scheduling shifts with program managers, and facilitating onboarding and hours reporting.
- Perform initial screenings and orientation, enhance and facilitate educational and training materials.
- Develop new tactics for thanking and retaining volunteers long-term.
- Work with shifting needs to keep the volunteer program robust as our work changes with the seasons.
- Excellent professional communication skills (written and verbal)
- Focused attention to detail and administrative acuity
- Desire work in a self-directed environment, and able to maintain self-motivation
- Ability to collaborate and work as part of a team, even if working remotely
- Excellent time-management and reporting skills
- Ability to think, react, iterate, and redirect in a fast-paced environment
- Proficient with Google Docs
- Ability to prioritize and handle a variety of assignments simultaneously in a vibrant work environment
- Willingness to work hands-on in various environments (outdoors at events, inside at office, remotely from home)
- Spanish fluency and other language skills a plus
- Able to bend and lift loads up to 30 pounds
- Must have a valid driver’s license and access to reliable transportation. (Mileage reimbursement will be provided for personal vehicle use.)
About Farm Fresh RI
Begun in 2004 as a student thesis project at Brown University, Farm Fresh RI has grown briskly to capture the public interest in locally grown food and translate it into sales for RI farmers and producers. Strongly mission-driven, Farm Fresh achieved 501c3 status in 2007, and has since implemented a variety of programs to enhance the local food system of the New England region, with particular attention to farm viability and low-income access to fresh food. Farm Fresh RI operates a wide range of marketplace programs (retail, wholesale, processing) that engage and connect tens of thousands of local eaters with thousands of New England farmers and producers.
Mission: Farm Fresh Rhode Island is growing a local food system that values the environment, health, and quality of life of the farmers and eaters of New England.
Vision: A New England abundant with diverse family farms and fertile soils, with locally and honestly produced food at the heart of every table.
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 $675.08
- $6495 Segal Education Award upon completion of service to help pay for college, graduate school, or vocational training, or to repay student loans
- $600 monthly rent credit
- Monthly bus pass
- Student loan deferment
- Mileage reimbursement
- Professional development opportunities
- CNCS health benefit & childcare assistance
Members must commit to a full year of service from January 17, 2023 to January 16, 2024. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Deadline to apply is December 1, 2022. Note: We are accepting candidates on a rolling basis and are flexible in negotiating start dates. One year of service is required, but for example service term could run 12/5/2022 to 12/4/2023.
- To apply: Please go to http://www.americorps.gov/about/programs/vista.asp and review the AmeriCorps VISTA information on this site.
- Then go to https://my.americorps.gov/mp/login.do 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 “Apply Now.”
- Submit your application including two references. *Applications must be submitted through this AmeriCorps VISTA site. Farm Fresh Rhode Island cannot accept applications directly.
- No calls or drop-ins please.
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.
Farm Fresh Rhode Island is an AmeriCorps grantee and receives funds as part of their State and National program, and to operate our VISTA program.