RE: community_garden digest, Vol 1 #639 - 4 msgs
Title: RE: community_garden digest, Vol 1 #639 - 4 msgs
Seattle Youth Garden Works
Please call 206-525-1213 ext 4131 for recorded information and an
opportunity to ask questions. For best results please submit cover letter
and resume by March 31. The position is slated to begin in early June.
Position Responsibilities: Develop, maintain, and refine horticulture-based
education, employment, and empowerment program for 15-21- year-old homeless
and at-risk youth. This requires work in several general areas. Program
planning and implementation, personnel management, budget and accounting
management, lead fundraising efforts, writing and managing grants, advisory
board coordination, program evaluation, networking with partners, and
coordination with other agencies and individuals. Accountability for
program's overall effectiveness, efficiency, and impact.
Reports to Associate Director for Programs of the Church Council of Greater
The position is exempt and salaried with benefits.
1) Program Development
a. Create and revise program proposals, timelines, outlines, and plans.
b. Develop, maintain, and revise program policies and procedure.
c. Lead and supervise all expansion and construction projects.
d. Develop new associations and partnerships beneficial to the program's
2) Program Coordination
a. Oversee youth business and educational activities.
b. Supervise the administration of the Work Training Program.
c. Supervise the administration of the Internship Program.
d. Supervise the administration of the Apprenticeship Program.
e. Maintain partnership links and interagency work with an eye on improved
non-duplication of services.
f. Coordinate SYGW program plans with related agencies.
3) Personnel Management
a. Manage senior staff: performance reviews, reporting, activity
b. Oversee payroll for senior staff
c. Attend prescribed staff meetings.
d. Lead hiring team.
e. Assume responsibility for hiring and termination of paid and stipend
4) Youth Business Development
Take the lead role in further developing the youth-managed businesses with
an eye on creating greater income and creating increased access and
educational value to program participants.
a. Develop a new South Park value added/off season business.
b. Work with business consultants to develop an overall plan for the
c. Coordinate with helpful community members to integrate useful business
5) Financial Management
a. Develop and oversee the annual budget
b. Produce monthly financial tracking including:
Reconciliation with CCGS reports
c. Coordinate financial matters with appropriate bookkeeping and accounting
d. Produce reports and billing on grant contracts.
a. Write grants and oversee grant research.
b. Supervise production and mailing of fundraising appeals.
c. Oversee and lead special events for fundraising.
d. Supervise acknowledgment and tracking of donations
e. Lead Major Donor cultivation efforts.
f. Cultivate program/donor relationships beneficial to SYGW
g. Maintain donor and foundation files and send updates and reports as
h. Supervise production of newsletter (three to four times annually)
7) Advisory Board Coordination
a. Work with SYGW Advisory Board chair to recruit, train, utilize, and
SYGW Advisory Board members.
b. Write monthly updates on program and finances.
c. Participate on all Advisory Board committees.
d. Assist in creating the Advisory Board meeting agenda.
e. Respond to board members as needed
a. Create and maintain system for evaluation of program effectiveness and
Conduct research on need for and impact of SYGW program in relationship to
education, training, crime reduction, and cost-effectiveness.
c. Write annual report
Understanding of and commitment to SYGW mission.
Experience managing a non-profit organization, including management and
development of staff, annual budget and youth programs, strategic planning,
fund development, and grant writing.
Success working with homeless and at-risk youth and experience addressing
their relevant issues.
Excellent communication with all levels of personnel and the public.
Experience working on and/or with a board of directors.
Ability to utilize feedback from supervisor, staff, participants, and
Understanding of organic gardening principals and practices.
Computer and Internet literate.
Business management experience.
In summary: outstanding leadership ability.
$33,000-$36,000 annual base pay plus full medical and dental benefits.
Annual vacation leave of 21 days. Sick leave as per CCGS personnel policies.
Retirement benefits at 5% of salary after 3 years.
ABOUT THE PROGRAM:
Seattle Youth Garden Works
2000 PROGRAM DESCRIPTION
Since May 1995, Seattle Youth Garden Works has been training youth 14 to
22 years old who are homeless or at-risk in basic employment skills through
the vehicle of market gardening. Participants work in the garden, operate a
small business, and further their education. Youth come to us from all over
the greater Seattle area. Our program is designed to help these youth earn
an income, learn new life and work skills, link up to supportive social
services, and offers positive and profitable structured activities geared
toward a large under-served population.
At any one time, up to 2000 youth in King County are homeless and alienated
from their communities and families, an alienation often accompanied by such
activities as drug abuse, gang activity, criminal involvement, attempted
suicide, and academic failure as well as homelessness. Anti-social and
self-destructive behaviors among youth are symptoms of larger underlying
problems, rooted in the youth's own lack of self-esteem and lack of power in
their communities. Youth who are lacking familial support and care need
opportunities to gain skills that will help them become self-reliant,
self-confident and connected to community.
We operate at two sites: our original one in Seattle's University District,
and a new site in South Seattle. In our University District program,
primarily homeless youth raise organic plant starts and produce, and sell
what they raise at the University District Farmer's Market. The market
offers our gardeners a meaningful and visible role in the community. They
find an excellent opportunity to apply knowledge and useful skills, and
through the evident success of their work to build a sense of
self-empowerment. Participants earn an hourly wage while they learn from
their work in the garden. They also earn a share of the proceeds from their
cooperative business. The entrepreneurial aspect of the program provides
ample opportunity for each participant to take a leadership role as they are
all be charged with the responsibility for running the business. This
includes making rules and accepting consequences, sharing the work, growing
or making a quality product, marketing the product(s), accounting for the
proceeds and sharing the profits. Ten percent of the produce grown by youth
is donated to the University District Food Bank and the Teen Feed Program
that serves hot meals to homeless and low-income youth in the University
The South Park program is modeled on the University District one. We have
designed it with particular emphasis on youth who are not currently in
school or who are having trouble in school, youth returning home from the
King County youth detention center and state juvenile rehabilitation
facility. We will market South Park produce at the Columbia City Farmers
Market and an on-site farm stand.
The Seattle Youth Garden Works program offers learning activities in a
broad-based curriculum that includes horticulture, nutrition, business and
economics, environmental issues and life skills. The curriculum is designed
specifically for homeless and learning disabled youth who have had little
success with traditional learning environments. Our goal is to supply an
experience-based education that provides built-in successes which encourages
further learning. The program includes work in landscaping, environmental
restoration, gardening, greenhouse production, selling at the market, field
trips, participation in the Northwest Flower and Garden Show, and wreath
making and sales.
The youth in our program are at-risk for homelessness, drug abuse, academic
failure, and criminal involvement. They come to the program on referrals
from the juvenile justice system, transitional housing, other youth
employment programs, schools, and by word of mouth. The age range of youth
in the University District program is 15-22; in South Park it is 14-18. 75%
are male. 20% identify themselves as gay/lesbian/ transgendered. About half
in the University District are Caucasian; the next largest groups are Latino
and African-American. In South Park only 20% are Caucasian; again there are
large groups of Latinos and African-Americans; and there are some Somalis
and Mexicans who speak little English. As far as we know now, 20% at South
Park will be post-detention. 80% at both sites have learning deficits
(including having English as a second language) or disabilities. 90% in the
University District and 10% in South Park are homeless; all are low-income.
In 1999, in addition to our regular work and with help from the USDA's
Community Food Projects Program, we developed an evaluation plan and began
developing a formal curriculum. We helped the Central Area Motivation
Program create a youth market garden based on our model. New work in 2000
includes finishing our garden-based curriculum, constructing a new
greenhouse, and starting our new garden and youth training program in South
There is a large need in Seattle for youth employment and job training
programs. We are the first, and one of two, employment opportunities in
Seattle that specializes in employment training specifically for homeless
youth. We are the only youth gardening organization of its kind in the
Seattle area. We collaborate with some twelve agencies and organizations in
order to offer to youth in our program important services beyond our market
garden training: employment counseling, occupational therapy, career
education, job search assistance, case management, GED preparatory study,
basic needs support and connection to youth transitional living homes and
drop-in centers. We establish a constancy and consistency of support around
these youth through phone calls and visits. Two of our staff members serve
to coordinate each youth's connections with agencies, schools, families,
parole officers, and case workers. We work to raise local awareness of our
market gardening program and the issues faced by the youth who work in it.
We recruit volunteers from the community to work in the garden side by side
with the youth to provide caring role models for them. We know that they
need to experience and trust a caring adult community, which will advocate
for them and support them in their efforts to succeed.
Over the past five years we have been very successful in our work with
homeless and at-risk youth. They leave our program, many returning to family
and school, with increased self-confidence and knowledge, and many skills to
help them find and hold employment.