Seeking Apprentices for 2014!

Common Hands Farm seeks 2-3 hard working and energetic apprentices for the 2014 growing season to work directly with enthusiastic young biodynamic farmers, and participate in a burgeoning community of local organic food distribution and a direct farm-customer network building in the Hudson Valley.

About us: 
We are a community of farmers led by founders Dan McManus and Tess Parker who live and work amongst this local community, attempting to integrate what we do at every level. Our land stewardship, thriving community and the vitality of our food becomes a currency with which we interact with our local economy and strengthen our local ecology as a whole. We are seeking to base our apprenticeship on developing not only the ability to work with nature to produce great food, but also on developing and innovating our local economy and food network in many ways through what we do.

About the farm:
We are heading into our 3rd season growing annual and perennial fruits and vegetables for our CSA, local restaurants, wholesalers, and farmers markets.  Roughly 7-8 acres under rotating cultivation during the season. Currently we provide for roughly 150 CSA members, locally and in Brooklyn, we attend 3-4 farmers markets, sell from our own on-site farm stand., and sell to local chefs and wholesalers.

About the apprenticeship:
We emphasize teaching our apprentices to read the land, the soil and the plants, as well as develop fertility through biodynamics, and healthy biodiverse planning through permaculture based thinking. Every farm and farmer is unique and we seek to replicate that in our apprentice learning exposing you to multiple methods of doing many things.
We ask for a full season commitment, end of March through the first week of November

Apprenticeship includes housing, a communal food stipend and a personal monetary stipend
We ask for 5 days/week March- May and 5 ½ days/ week June-October
Hours will also fluctuate a bit with the sun and the demands of the garden and sales. Work will be roughly 8 hours/day in the early and late season and 9-10 hours during the high season (June-September).
Applicants must be prepared for a year of hard work, simple living, and dedication to learning what it takes to farm organically. This process will challenge your mind and body but is ultimately rewarding.

Room and board: 
Housing is provided in the town of Hudson and the farm is approximately 1 mile outside of town. Having your own transport is encouraged because of the daily commute to the farm from town, but many have biked or carpooled instead.
The house has multiple rooms and two kitchens/two bathrooms. Many evenings are spent on the beautiful front porch with a big plate of food and the sun setting overlooking a vibrant community of neighbors.

Skills desired:
-able to think on your feet and promote awareness of your surroundings at all times
-able to promote the farm in the local community and further integrate our direct local relationships
-able to work fluctuating hours and in all weather throughout the season (sturdy weatherproof gear recommended)
-able to focus on efficiency and think of new ways to improve the capacities of the farm and the community.
-able to connect and care for and respect each of your co-workers like family. we put strong emphasis on supporting and sharing our personal development and growth with one another
-able to connect enthusiastically with our customers and visitors sometimes on a daily basis
-able to drive the delivery/market van(not a must but preferred)
-able to create and innovate when appropriate as well as observe and embody the methods of head farmers
-able to adapt and respond to fluctuating and at times high-stress environments

Typical work expected:
Seeding and transplanting, watering, weeding, bed prep, cover-cropping, plant maintenance and biodynamic prep application, composting, harvesting, processing and packing.
As the season progresses, other responsibilities include:
Working farm stands and farmers markets, CSA customer service, sales and delivery, care for the farm and living spaces (cooking, keeping communal areas tidy), giving basic instruction to volunteers that come to the farm

How to apply:

Send a cover letter and resume to with the following:
-Interest and past experience in farming
-What are you looking for in an apprenticeship?
-What are you drawn to about farming, or about our farm specifically?
-Have you had past experiences living in community?
-Skill set you are bringing and skill set you would like to improve
-What do you love? What gets you up in the morning?

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