Wild Farm Alliance
*This position has been filled*
Building Wild and Resilient Farms in California
Ability to translate complex science into written formats for community members
Experience in agricultural operations, natural areas or knowledge in native plants, insects birds, &/or wildlife
- Conducting scientific literature research
Outreach, social media, online communications
Background in conservation, agriculture, botany, entomology, ecology, etc.
Openings: 0 of 1
Focus Area: Agri-Food Systems
Climate Mitigation & Adaptation, Regenerative Agriculture, Watershed Management, Education & Outreach, Food Systems
Education & Outreach
Goals & Needs
Wild Farm Alliance (WFA) is a national nonprofit, founded in 2000, working to bring nature back to the farm and build a wild and resilient agricultural movement. Our mission is to promote a healthy, viable agriculture that helps to protect and restore wild nature. Our programs are focused on assisting growers with integrating practices that support agricultural production and protect natural resources. Integral to our work, we’ve helped farmers and ranchers with identifying conservation opportunities and helping them with implementation. Some of the practices we have helped to install on farms include planting hedgerows and riparian plantings, restoring native plants in areas too steep to farm, and creating wildlife corridors with trees and shrubs. All of these projects are now sequestering carbon and helping to make the farms more resilient to climate chaos.
WFA's GrizzlyCorps member will promote practices that build resilience and biodiversity conservation through on the ground work and new resources. First, the member will work with California farmers who were awarded a 2021/2022 Healthy Soils Incentive grant to implement conservation plantings including; hedgerows, riparian buffers and other habitat installation projects that increase the farm's capacity to successfully sequester carbon. Second, the member will work with WFA staff to create innovative resources (online and print) for farmers and agricultural professionals on conserving biodiversity and building climate resilience. Finally, the member will help to promote WFA’s work through outreach at events and conferences and through social media and other online platforms.
California farmers are experiencing the negative impacts of climate change on-the-ground everyday - unpredictable weather patterns, flooding, drought, and increased invasive species. While farmers and ranchers are adaptable by nature, these additional challenges make it even harder to operate a viable business. Fortunately, biodiversity conservation practices that we promote help to address many issues. These practices can be used not only to improve soil health, sequester carbon and reduce GHG emissions, they also provide a myriad of benefits including water quality protection, erosion control, increased habitat for beneficial birds and insects and improved pollination services. In turn, farmers who implement such practices are not only helping to manage the effects of climate change, but they are also preparing their farms to be more resilient to the unpredictable future.
Capacity Building Projects
Capacity Goal 1: Provide on the ground assistance with installing conservation plantings on California farms.
The fellow will:
Assist with planning in-person field days and webinars.
Provide support (problem solving growth issues, answer questions, etc) to farmers WFA worked with over the last year to install hedgerows.
Assist farmers with planting hedgerows that we are working with through the HSP program (helping with plant list, site preparation and actual planting).
Create step-by-step guide on how to work with farmers to install hedgerows. Including what questions to ask, the steps to take, etc. for future use by the organization.
The creation of these resources and activities conducted by the fellow will help WFA work with more farmers than we can currently assist. By having more capacity to assist growers with planning and planting conservation plantings we can help additional growers who were awarded an HSP grant be successful.
Capacity Goal 2: Create an online clearinghouse that includes maps and tools to showcase conservation plantings as an effective tool for regenerative agriculture to store carbon and improve long-term farm viability.
The fellow will:
Assist with creating an online map showcasing hedgerows already planted, creating a database of hedgerows planted in CA.
Provide support in creating a printed and online guide on how to successfully implement natural enemy habitat on farms.
The creation of these resources will allow WFA to reach a wide audience with our work that extends beyond our database. We will be able to inspire thousands of farmers and agricultural professionals to implement practices that build resilience and support biodiversity.
Capacity Goal 3: Conduct outreach and communication about the work the fellow is doing through our communication channels and outreach events..
The fellow will:
Attend and participate in community events and conferences to talk with farmers and others about our work.
Create a social media guide that outlines a social media plan that enables staff to maintain a system after the fellow leaves.
Assist with email communication with supporters about the progress of the fellow and WFA’s work.
These activities will allow WFA to communicate more with our community about our work and improve and expand our reach on social media. The above capacity building goals are designed to build upon the work of the previous GrizzlyCorps fellow, implementing more on the ground practices that incorporate permanent habitat on farms. The new fellow will work with producers that our first fellow engaged and helped with HSP applications. In addition, this new fellow will conduct more outreach activities through field days, webinars and new resources.
Organizational & Community Highlights
Wild Farm Alliance is a small but mighty organization. Our executive director is based in Watsonville, CA, where our main office facilities are located, the assistant director is based in Minneapolis, MN and our program coordinator is located in a to-be-determined state. We have a flexible work environment and culture, balancing the need for our presence behind a computer and out in the field. Watsonville, CA is a small agricultural town in Santa Cruz County located on the Central Coast. The area is known for growing strawberries, apples, lettuce and a host of other vegetables. Watsonville is home to people of varied ethnic backgrounds and diverse communities, with a large Latinx population.
Our entire staff currently does most of our work remotely (work from home) and anticipate that to continue well into the future. Staff is in almost constant communication. While we expect the member to work from Watsonville at our main office, we do anticipate that they will also do some work remotely. We are open to creative scenarios.