Lost Sierra Food Project & Plumas Charter School
Quincy & Taylorsville, CA
Feather River Forests, Farms and Youth: Creating Resilient Rural Communities
Areas of academic training: education; ecology or biological sciences; natural resource and environmental fields; outdoor recreation; sustainable agriculture and food systems; horticulture, permaculture, and biodynamics; nutrition; community development; and communications, public administration, or public relations.
Creativity and an interest in project development
Good time management and self-direction
Experience leading youth in a classroom or outdoor setting.
Physical endurance- ability to withstand days in the heat (90+ degrees F), long hikes, etc.
Interest in facilitation and mental health
Communication skills, works well on a team, interpersonal skills and self-confidence
Openings: 0 of 1
Focus Area: Agriculture/Fire/Forestry
Climate Mitigation & Adaptation; Ecological Forestry; Education & Outreach; Fire Preparedness & Management; Food Systems; Regenerative Agriculture; Volunteer Engagement; Watershed Management
Education & Outreach
Goals & Needs
Plumas Charter School’s Outdoor Education Program and Lost Sierra Food Project are teaming up to host a GrizzlyCorps Fellow. This fellow will work in two of the most important crises of our time by working a full season on a regenerative agriculture farm, and with local youth and landscapes as we navigate post-wildfire recovery. This opportunity promotes GrizzlyCorp’s purpose and goals by offering immersive experiences in agriculture, forest fire, and resilience.
The Lost Sierra Food Project (LSFP) aims to increase local food access for Plumas County residents, prioritizing low income populations, provide workforce development programs, and create educational food and ecological farming opportunities.
Plumas Charter School (PCS) is a 501(c)3 non-profit public charter school that provides a personalized learning environment, particularly for students who struggle in traditional classroom settings.
As a GrizzlyCorps Fellow with LSFP and PCS, you will spend 11 months supporting both organizations. With PCS, you will be anchored in our Indian Valley community, working with youth on healing their trauma in the wake of the Dixie Fire. We’ll work together to help students reform a connection with nature both in and outside of Indian Valley. You’ll facilitate time for outdoor play and self-discovery, help plan and implement day and overnight field trips, and work with students to actively restore and rebuild our local community and ecosystems. With LSFP you will be hands-on throughout the farm season on our community-based farm. Depending on the applicant, LSFP has a variety of opportunities that can be catered to your goals, such as taking a leadership role in educational programming, strategic planning, marketing and/or hosting community events.
We are looking to bring on one fellow for this project to be shared between two organizations. Margaret Mead said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” Lost Sierra Food Project is looking for someone who is motivated by changing the way we view food and agriculture, with a commitment to sustainability, empowerment through education, and supporting local food systems. Plumas Charter School is looking for someone who can work on a team, be a mentor for youth, and thrives in a dynamic work environment. The ideal candidate believes in immersive hands-on programming, listening to the needs of a community, and developing creative projects to create sustaining change.
LSFP teaches and practices regenerative farming practices, methods that reverse climate change by building organic matter and restoring degraded soil biodiversity. Food access, education and regenerative farming create an intersection between community action and environmental practices.
The Dixie Fire that burned Plumas County is the largest single-source wildfire in California’s history. Burning 963,309 acres, the fire also engulfed multiple communities. While many areas throughout California are developing plans to try to reduce wildfire risk, more and more find themselves trying to navigate this post-wildfire recovery process. Among all the other needs, addressing the impacts on youth is often overlooked. Developing techniques to help youth reconnect to nature and cultivate resilience is a vital part of creating resilient mountain communities in the future.
Capacity Building Projects
There are two primary capacity building projects that the GrizzlyCorps fellow could focus on in their time with the Lost Sierra Food Project:
Project 1: Develop and sustain LSFP's regenerative farming education programs.
LSFP hosts and instructs the Agricultural Pathway for the Career Technical Education Program at Plumas Charter School and the Ecological Farming Certificate at Feather River College and in the Spring of 2022, we expanded our educational offering to Plumas Unified School District (PUSD). These programs teach students about ecological production methods, techniques for high-altitude farming, diversified crop production, season extension, and how small farms can be a tool for positive social, economic and environmental change.
Project 2: Contribute to outreach and planning efforts to support community food security initiatives in the Dixie Fire burn scar area.
This planning process will involve listening to existing proposed projects, finding stakeholders to partner with, conducting interviews about the needs of the community, and developing a long term support plan based on the results.
Plumas Charter School is working to develop and implement different strategies to address post-wildfire trauma and build student agency in the recovery process. We are taking a three pronged approach: 1) rebuilding connections to nature through play and exploration; 2) exposing students to skills in outdoor recreation and natural resource management to provide them the background to enjoy and restore natural areas in the future, and; 3) actively involving students in the ecosystem restoration and community rebuilding projects occurring in Indian Valley.
You will play an active role in implementing activities for all the goals outlined above. This will include leading outdoor adventure sessions and recreation trips for the students, working with local partners to develop restoration and community building projects for students to participate in (and create on their own!), and actively searching for ways we may further support youth mental health. We’ll encourage you to draw off your own unique skills as well!
Ultimately you will assist in the creation of a suite of activities specifically designed to support youth who have been impacted by catastrophic wildfire, both building the resilience of our local communities as we navigate recovery, and helping to develop a playbook for future communities who face similar challenges.
Organizational & Community Highlights
Quincy is small-town living at its best: small, affordable town surrounded by public lands, with plenty of mountains, canyons, rivers, and lakes. There is lots to do if you enjoy the outdoors and your destinations will never be busy or crowded. There’s Feather River Foods Co-op (a.k.a. community center), our local brewery “Quintopia”, a surprising number excellent thrift stores, and hardly any chain restaurants or businesses. Quincy has been named one of “America’s Coolest Small Towns” (2013) and a “Beautiful, Charming Small Town in Northern California” (2017).
Quincy and surrounding areas offer an abundance of recreational opportunities, including: endless hiking; majestic rivers and lakes for camping, SUP-ing, and paddling; world class mountain biking; snow-shoeing, cross country and backcountry skiing; adventurous rock climbing; and more!
Quincy is the county seat, and home to Plumas District Hospital, Feather River College, the Supervisor’s Office and Mt. Hough Ranger District of Plumas National Forest. There are lots of well-educated professionals in the area, and a thriving young adult population. The UC Berkeley Forestry Camp is 8 miles west of Quincy in Meadow Valley. For a rural area, Quincy has grocery stores, gas stations, internet access downtown, and more!
Your Site Supervisor at Plumas Charter is Courtney Gomola. Courtney is the Outdoor Education Coordinator and spends her time getting kids outdoors and on adventures. When she’s not on the trails or water with her students, you can find her teaching yoga, appreciating plants near and far, and exploring the forests, rivers, and roadways via the soles of her feet or wheels of her bike.
Your Site Supervisor for Lost Sierra Food Project is Jessie Mazar. Jessie is the Executive Director for LSFP and is committed to community development, education, and, of course, providing nourishing food to Plumas County residents. During her free time, you can find her working on odd projects or exploring her backyard on bikes, skis or whatever gear she can find.