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wild farm alliance

Watsonville, CA 

 

https://www.wildfarmalliance.org/ 

Building Wild and Resilient Farms in California

Desired Skills/Traits:

  • We are looking for a person that has an educational background in conservation, agriculture, botany, entomology, ecology or similarly focused subjects. 

  • Primary skills we are seeking include: 
    1) Work experience in the field on an agricultural operation or a natural area, 
    2) A working knowledge of native plants, insects, birds and/or wildlife, 
    3) Ability to communicate with a wide range of people from multiple cultural and ethnic backgrounds, preferably the ability to speak Spanish (or another language) to allow for us to outreach to a new population of growers.

  • Secondary skills we are seeking in a fellow include: 
    1) Experience with ESRI and ArcGIS StoryMap platforms, 
    2) Experience in outreach, especially social media and online communications, and 
    3) Ability to translate technical information to farmer-friendly language.

     

Openings: 0 of 1

wfa.jpeg
Focus Area: Agri-food Systems

Climate Mitigation & Adaptation, Education & Outreach, Food Systems
Regenerative Agriculture, Watershed Management

project breakdown

Research

10%

Planning

30%

Implementation

30%

Education & Outreach

30%

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 implement on farms include installing 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 through the creation of conservation plans for California farmers with a focus on the following resource issues: a) addressing climate adaptation and carbon sequestration; b) improving biodiversity conservation; c) supporting pollinators; and d) attracting beneficial insects and birds for pest control. The Fellow will create conservation plans alongside farmers that include practices such as installing hedgerows, windbreaks, grassed waterways, filter strips and riparian plantings along field edges and in areas too steep, rocky or wet to farm. These plantings will sequester carbon, build farm resilience to climate change, create wildlife corridors and support pollinators and beneficial insects and birds. In addition, 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 to farmers in developing conservation plans that address various resource concerns.

 

  • Conduct outreach to farmers offering our assistance to develop a variety of conservation plans. 

  • Work with WFA staff and farmers to identify the type of conservation plan they need to meet their goals, write the technical plans through various site visits to the farm and through research conducted online, delivering a final plan to both the farm and California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA).  

  • Assist farmers as needed to identify sources of funding that would allow the farmer to implement the conservation plan. 

 

The creation of these conservation plans and activities will help WFA work with more farmers than we can currently assist and in a new way. By having more capacity to assist growers with conservation planning we can help more growers be better prepared to apply for programs through the Farm Bill Programs (EQIP, CSP) and CDFA programs (Pollinator Habitat Program, Healthy Soils Program).  

 

Capacity Goal 2: Provide on the ground assistance with installing conservation plantings on California farms. 

 

  • Outreach to and assist farmers with planning and installing pollinator habitat plantings. 

  • Assist with planning and participating in field days with some featuring demonstration habitat plantings. 

  • Assist with planning and participating in other presentations and online events promoting our technical assistance services. 

  • Provide support (problem solving growth issues, answer questions, etc) to farmers WFA worked with over the last few years to install hedgerows. 

  • Assist farmers with submitting applications for CDFA’s HSP program. 


 

These activities 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 are interested in bringing nature back to their farms.

 

Capacity Goal 3: Conduct outreach and communication about the work the fellow is doing through our communication channels and outreach events. 

 

  • Attend and participate in community events and conferences to talk with farmers and others about our work and technical assistance services.

  • Assist with the creation of a social media guide that outlines a social media plan for engaging with and growing our base of supporters.. 

  • 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. 

Organizational & Community Highlights

Wild Farm Alliance is a small but mighty organization. Our executive director is based in Watsonville, CA, the Deputy Director is based in Minneapolis, MN and we have three additional program staff based in remote offices in CA and OR. We have a flexible work environment and culture, balancing the need for our presence behind a computer and out in the field. Our entire staff does most of our work remotely (work from home) and are in almost constant communication, via Zoom and other platforms. Our previous GrizzlyCorps Fellow was based in Watsonville, 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. While we don’t currently have a physical office, we are open to creative solutions and will identify physical office space for our GrizzlyCorps Fellow.

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