Volunteer On the Farm
Flint Hill Farm is lucky to have dedicated groups of volunteers who are committed to the Center's mission of "Feeding the Spirit, Educating the Mind, Preserving the Community." Volunteers provide visitors with a unique and personal agricultural experience.
We invite you to join this dedicated team. All that's required is a love of our natural world, an interest in spending time with visitors of all ages, and completion of the required training. There are several ways in which you can volunteer your time:
Carpenters: to be able to fix the side of run-in shed for the draft horses, build lean too for farm equipment and repair stall doors
Weed Whacking around the fence lines
Nature Trail Helpers: Upgrading the nature trails in the woods (3-10 people)
Family or individuals (3) needed with desire to plan together garden for next year. Able to use produce for their families. Need to coordinate a plan to start plants in the greenhouses in the spring and maintain the flower, herb and outside vegetable gardens for both family and school visitors throughout the growing season. At the end of the season, winterize the garden after harvest.
Master Gardener: oversee master plan of garden and assist gardeners when necessary. Would be able to assist in 3 events for the community in area of personal expertise. Would be knowledgeable (or be able to access a gardener) to prepare trellis grapes and vines.
Family or individual: AM or PM milking of goats or cow---will train--time required approx. 1 and 1/2 hr.
Family or individual to assist in gathering and cleaning eggs--AM or PM--one or more days per week. Will train.
Family or individual with interest in attending Farmers Market in the Spring and summer. Will pay $40.00 per market day. Must be willing to become knowledgeable concerning milk and cheese made on the farm. May use farm car for transportation to markets.
Stall help needed AM/PM. Work will be shared with another adult or teen. Will train. Needs to be willing to become comfortable around various animals. Time: 7:00 AM for cleaning stalls-- PM for cleaning run in areas. Duties include washing and filling water buckets, putting hay into stalls, removing manure and putting in fresh bedding.
Feeding a.m. or p.m.: To work with another trained teen or young adult. To bring food to various animals. Duties include being able to carry small feed buckets. Ability to drive the John Deere Gator a plus. Willing to learn to be comfortable around various animals.
Assist in cheese packaging for market. Will train to work in cheese house. Once or twice a week for 2 hrs. Hours flexible.
School tours: between the hours of 8:30 AM and 3:00 PM Hours flexible depending on school scheduling in the spring, summer, fall. 3hr slots. Will train. Needs to like to be around lots of young people.
Work in the office: file, answer phones, take messages and handle sales of farm produce and do some errands. Time flexible! Need strong personal skills.
Maintenance person: would be able to do small repairs-wood working/ machine skills a plus!
Painter: Be able to paint the out buildings. Paint and brushes provided
Work team to build a 10 X 10 anteroom onto our present farm store to allow access and work area for volunteers in wheelchairs (currently no space to build appropriate access and work/counter space for our very good friends from Good Shepard who wish to volunteer in the store on weekends).
Backhoe: Needed to help dig new, additional waterlines out to the fields
LIVE, LEARN, LEAD:
As part of the Flint Hill Farm Education Center the Volunteer Program provides:
Opportunities for the Education and Personal Development of its Volunteers;
Opportunities for the Community to Participate and Contribute in tangible ways;
All of the Animals with the Love and Care they need.
The Importance of Volunteer Staff to the Farm:
The ‘Extra Hands’ that a volunteer staff provides not only makes the animals happier, but also makes possible a superior level of program quality enabling education center ‘students’ greater personalized attention, and freeing Board Members to invest their time and energies into the Management and Further Development of the Education Center. As our Vocational Program Director puts it, “Volunteers are not paid, because they are Priceless!”
The Farm Environment of nature and community, physical outdoor work and the presence of animals, can make one feel alive and add to the quality of volunteer’s lives through friendships, fresh air, whole foods and exercise.
As part of the ‘Education Center’ volunteers have the opportunity to learn much more than what the constant care of animals and farm includes: washing buckets, passing out hay, picking up manure etc. High School and College age volunteers have the opportunity to learn about team work, communication skills, and leadership. Skills necessary for life and coveted by future employers.
When assisting with Education Center programs, volunteers will gain experience working with children, handicapped, elderly and the public.
As well as a continued opportunity to learn hands on about the care, health, and behavior of animals; I envision the development of workplace workshops to offer Volunteers and others at the farm in Communication and Relationship Skills, Emergency Response, Work place Ergonomics, and the like.
Seasoned volunteers will have the opportunity to train and mentor new volunteers. A simple model for training will be offered:
I do, You Watch
We Do together
You do, I watch
You do, they watch...
There is work enough to share with everyone! Everyone can be an integral part of the farm. For Example, even young children can help collect eggs, wash and put them in containers; Walk young goats (that often squeeze through the fence) back to their mothers; Collect and move stones to remove from pasture and garden and fill mud holes.
The list is endless…. But there is always a place for everyone.
The Flint Hill Farm Volunteer Program is part of the Education Center. As such, it seeks to provide opportunity for personal development of its volunteers as well as the natural life enhancing effects of working together outdoors among animals and friends, down on the Farm.