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Upper Salinas - Las Tablas RCD

Atascadero, CA

https://www.us-ltrcd.org/

Central Coast California Sustainable Land Initiative: Farmer Outreach and Network Building

Desired Skills/Traits:

  • Agriculture, Experience farming or ranching, Farmer/rancher networking, Farmer-facing software, Outreach coordination, Coalition building. 

  • Primary Skills:

    • Data collection and analysis

    • Public speaking

    • Workshop hosting

    • Communications via phone, email, text

    • Organizational skills. 

  • Secondary Skills:

    • Communication/storytelling

    • Digital literacy

    • Teamwork and collaboration. 

  • Spanish-speaking proficiency would be great, but not a must have.

Openings: 1 of 1 

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Focus Area: Agriculture

Regenerative Agriculture, Food Systems, Ecological Forestry, Education & Outreach, Climate Mitigation & Adaptation, Food Systems, Fire Preparedness & Management

project breakdown

Research

10%

Planning

20%

Implementation

10%

Education & Outreach

60%

Goals & Needs

The Upper Salinas Las Tablas Resource Conservation District (USLT RCD) is committed to providing technical assistance, education, and resources to agricultural, rural, and urban communities to preserve natural elements while enhancing land productivity. Housed within the USLT RCD is the Sustainable Land Initiative (SLI) program, which aims to accelerate the adoption of climate-smart land management practices on natural and working lands. In collaboration with RCD offices across California's Central Coast, Cal Poly, and community-based organizations like the Community Environmental Council, we are expanding outreach efforts and implementing agricultural conservation farm plans. In early 2024, these partners came together to apply for a three-year grant funded by the California Department of Conservation. Within this grant opportunity, intending to support GrizzlyCorp Fellows to bolster the SLI program.

 

The Fellow will play a pivotal role in developing a robust farmer/rancher network crucial to the success of climate-smart agriculture on California's Central Coast. Working closely with the USLTRCD and in partnership with the Community Environmental Council, the Fellow will receive training in the Sustainable Land Initiative software to support applicants from intake through implementation. Collaboratively, they will design and execute an outreach plan targeting the four participating RCDs and Cal Poly. The Fellow will cultivate relationships with local growers, organize and lead in-person workshops and training events, and contribute to the creation of a comprehensive database for efficient support delivery. The Fellow's contribution will be instrumental in expanding the project and facilitating widespread education and adoption of climate-smart agriculture practices for enhanced climate resilience

Capacity Building Projects

 

Project 1: Sustainable Land Initiative - Research and Community Engagement

  • The Fellow will collaborate with the four RCDs within the project scope and the Community Environmental Council to acquire foundational knowledge of climate-smart agriculture in our region. Conduct research on prevalent practices, pinpoint opportunities for enhancement, and strategize approaches to engage new growers.

  • Leverage research findings to craft an effective outreach plan and establish a shared list of growers among the RCDs. The creation of a centralized data collection space is crucial, addressing previous limitations stemming from organizational capacity constraints.

  • Agencies involved in this task include Upper Salinas Las Tablas RCD, Cachuma RCD, Coastal San Luis RCD, Ventura County RCD, and the Community Environmental Council.

 

Project 2: Sustainable Land Initiative - Outreach Plan and Implementation 

  • Collaborating closely with the Community Environmental Council (CEC), the Fellow will lead the creation of a comprehensive outreach plan for the Sustainable Land Initiative (SLI) program. SLI serves as a vital tool in facilitating connections between farmers and ranchers for carbon farm planning. With our grant project focused on expanding SLI's reach, the Fellow's role will be pivotal in orchestrating various outreach activities. This includes organizing webinars, informational sessions, and training sessions for technical service providers on SLI software. Additionally, the Fellow will oversee the establishment of SLI's dedicated webpage and coordinate efforts to promote its services throughout the Central Coast. Their responsibilities will encompass creating communication materials, cultivating a network of interested growers, and providing support to applicants during the intake process.

  • As the primary liaison between the RCDs, Cal Poly, and CEC, the Fellow will play a crucial role in ensuring seamless communication and collaboration among project partners. They will facilitate the exchange of information, sharing of resources, and consistent execution of the outreach plan across all stakeholders. By fostering strong partnerships and alignment of efforts, the Fellow will contribute to the effective implementation of project objectives and the adoption of climate-smart agriculture practices across the region.

  • Agencies involved in this task include the Community Environmental Council, and Cal Poly. 

Organizational & Community Highlights

  • On California’s Central Coast, our vibrant community thrives on the efforts of dedicated farmers and ranchers who cultivate, reside, and distribute their products locally, nationally, and beyond. Despite the abundance of resources and funding available at the state level, our region often finds itself overlooked. In response, we've forged collaborative partnerships across our four Resource Conservation Districts (RCDs) spanning the Tri-County area. Together, we're enhancing our collective capacity to better support our local growers. Through this unified effort, we're bringing valuable resources directly to our growers, expanding our network of land bases, and championing climate-smart practices aimed at sequestering carbon and mitigating greenhouse gas emissions.

  • USLT RCD - The general work environment includes both office and field duties with flexible schedules to meet the needs of individual projects.  Working for, and under, the RCD provides an opportunity to develop professional rapport with a variety of personnel ranging from farm workers to elected officials. USLTRCD is a small organization, composed of six staff, with five board members that oversee the general direction of programs and projects.  The expertise of each staff member compliments the other with backgrounds in planning, agribusiness, forestry, botany, ecological restoration, permit coordination, regulatory policy, and nonprofit and community stewardship.

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