Full-Time School Garden Educator – FoodCorps Service Member
Who We Are
FoodCorps is a nationwide team of AmeriCorps leaders that connects kids to food and helps them grow up healthy. We do that by placing motivated leaders in limited-resource communities for a year of public service. Serving under the direction of local partner organizations, our service members focus on three areas of service:
- Hands-on learning: students grow, cook, and taste new foods, which builds their skills and changes food preferences
- Healthy school meals: the cafeteria experience steers students towards the healthiest options and gets them excited to try new healthy foods
- Schoolwide culture of health: as a whole, the school community and environment – from hallways to classrooms to cafeteria to grounds – celebrates healthy food. We measure our success in terms of changes in children, schools, and systems.
What We’re Looking For
- Passion for building a healthier future for school children
- Commitment to working hard in service of local communities in order to make a difference
- Demonstrated leadership ability
- Motivation to serve full-time in a limited resource community
- Perseverance in the face of challenges and creativity in finding solutions
- Respect for diversity of opinion, experience, and background
- Experience working in or studying food systems, agriculture, public health, education, school nutrition, culinary arts, community organizing, or public service
- Experience working or volunteering in education, youth development, or other teaching setting
- Knowledge of the culture, history, and/or language of the communities we serve
- Desire to gain hands-on experience for your career
- Demonstrated ability or dedication to performing the activities listed below
To be considered for a FoodCorps service member position, you must:
- Be 18 years or older by the start of your service term
- Be a legal, permanent resident of the United States
- Hold a high school diploma, GED or equivalent
Individual service positions differ by location. There may be additional requirements depending on the site to which you apply.
What You’ll Do
Service members work with schools, service site organizations and local communities to build healthy school food environments. They do this in a variety of ways:
- Service members focus on teaching children in grades K-8 about food and nutrition in the classroom or cafeteria by delivering engaging, hands-on lessons, integrating activities into subjects such as math, science and history, working with teachers and school administrators to increase food and nutrition education in curricula, and more.
- Service members grow healthy food with students, teachers, and community members in school gardens, dynamic educational settings where kids can get their hands dirty and experience what they’re learning first-hand. While some service members expand/maintain already-existing school gardens, greenhouses and hoop houses, others work to establish new gardens. Service members develop garden sustainability plans and recruit community volunteers to ensure that the projects they start last into the future.
- Service members help build schoolwide cultures of health by building strong, collaborative relationships with teachers, families, and school administrators, recruiting and training volunteers, organizing committees and running meetings, talking to press and public officials.
- Service members spend time learning and participating in training, helping FoodCorps and schools assess the impact they are having, and raising money to help support the local projects when allowable.
What You’ll Gain
- Up to $27,500-32,500 living stipend for Service Members, paid bi-weekly.
- $6,495 AmeriCorps Segal Education Award, upon successful completion of your term of service
- Health insurance*
- Partial childcare reimbursement, if you qualify
- Student loan forbearance, if you qualify
- Training, mentorship, and professional development opportunities
*Participation in the FoodCorps health insurance option is required if you cannot provide proof of existing coverage.
Where You’ll Serve
FoodCorps offers service positions in multiple states, including communities throughout AR, CA, CT, DC Metro Area, GA, IA, ME, MA, MI, MS, NJ, NM, NY and OR. To see our local Service Sites, visit: https://foodcorps.org/apply/where-youll-serve/.
In order to successfully complete your term of service, you must, at a minimum, serve 1,700 allowable hours. The service duration is August 8, 2022 – July 7, 2023.
FoodCorps service members report to the designated supervisor at their service site. FoodCorps state and national staff provide additional guidance and oversight.
Service members are expected to abide by rules of conduct set forth in their member contract and will be evaluated for performance twice during the term: at the midpoint and end of service. Performance is evaluated based on progress toward achieving goals set forth in your unique service plan as well as general professional conduct in the service environment. Service members who break the rules of conduct may be suspended and/or terminated at any time.
FoodCorps is a proud member of the AmeriCorps network. All FoodCorps service members are full-time AmeriCorps members and are therefore bound by AmeriCorps rules and regulations, including abiding by AmeriCorps prohibited activities and ensuring that volunteers abide by prohibited activities, which can be found in your member contract and your FoodCorps Service Member Handbook. See www.americorps.gov for more information about AmeriCorps service.
All FoodCorps service members must pass a three-part background check to be eligible for service, including clearing the National Sex Offender Public Registry, state background checks in your state of service and residence at time of application, and an FBI criminal history check (fingerprint-based). This position includes access to vulnerable populations (individuals with disabilities, senior citizens, and/or youth). To successfully perform their duties, service members must be able to stand for extended periods of time to teach; supervise groups of children in- and outdoors; perform manual labor in the school garden, including digging, getting up and down, lifting garden equipment; aid children in the garden; coordinate and organize meetings; recruit and manage volunteers; and travel to and from National Orientation and Gatherings as required.
Your position is unique to AmeriCorps and does not displace organization staff or volunteers.
FoodCorps is an equal opportunity organization and we respect diversity. FoodCorps does not discriminate on the basis of age, sex, race, color, creed, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, alienage or citizenship, disability, marital status, military or veteran status, or any other legally recognized protected basis under federal, state, or local laws, regulations or ordinances.
FoodCorps provides reasonable accommodations to applicants and employees as required by law. Applicants with disabilities may request reasonable accommodation at any point in the employment process.
All service positions at FoodCorps are at-will. Service positions, though designed to last for one year, are not guaranteed for a set period of time. Both service members and FoodCorps have the right to terminate the position at any time. FoodCorps reserves the right to conduct employment, education, and background checks upon which your position may be contingent.
Because we prioritize the health of communities and kids, FoodCorps has decided to require COVID-19 vaccination for staff and service members, to the extent permitted by applicable federal, state, and local law. We came to this decision after much discussion and consultation and recognize that some people and partners might have to make tough decisions because of it. More information about this requirement and the exemption process to apply for a legally-required exception to the vaccination requirement will be provided during onboarding, should you receive an offer from FoodCorps.