Volunteering at Many Hands Organic Farm
We take one-time individual and group volunteers all weekdays during the growing season, and a little more irregularly during the winter. Volunteers should plan to work quickly, take direction well, and enjoy all sorts of weather (much of which is not considered ideal). Then plan to enjoy lunch with us. Volunteering at the farm is a great way to understand both the vegetable and animal aspects of our farm.
One of the essential constituencies of our workforce is working shareholders. For 4 hours of work during the 22-week CSA summer season, the 4-week fall CSA season, and throughout the winter if you desire (mornings 8-noon), volunteers receive as barter one large share of produce during the CSA season. Off-season working shareholders receive a dozen of eggs and something like applesauce each week. Come for breakfast at 7:00 and stay for lunch. It is a good opportunity for someone interested in learning the CSA process from a hands-on perspective (there are some animal chores too), and to become a part of our farm community. Vacations and time off are encouraged. We are always looking for more working shareholders to help us with the very large CSA harvest, and working shareholders become beloved members of our staff.
We welcome educational and youth groups, and offer two options for such groups:
Come learn about our unique system of organic farming – without chemical fertilizers, insecticides, or herbicides and with heavy use of foliar nutritional applications, natural rock powders, vegetable meals, crop rotation, heavy mulches, wood chips, corrugated cardboard, cover crops, animals in rotation with vegetables and fruits and silage tarps to facilitate no-till practices. We can tailor an educational experience to your group, focusing on our approach to mitigating climate change through farming or more practical farm skills. Some workshops we have led in the past include:
- Soil Carbon: Raising More, Better Food while Easing Climate Stress
- Root Cellaring and More – Preserving Food for The Entire Year
- 5 Risky Decisions that Defined Our Lives – Sustaining Our Homestead
- Organic Fruit Tree Management
- Organic Small Fruit Production
- Mushroom Growing
- Starting Seeds and Seedlings in Greenhouse and Field
- Poultry Management with Chicken Tractor
We are happy to discuss additional offerings based on your group needs. Workshops are offered at a sliding scale based on the resources of your group and the time you spend here. Please inquire about pricing at firstname.lastname@example.org. We also offer lunch for $10 a plate.
Each year we offer a number of farm-sponsored workshops. In 2023 there are seven such workshops. Information is here – https://mhof.net/events-workshops/
One of the best ways to learn about our farm is to join us in our work. We welcome volunteer groups free of charge for full or half days, usually on Tuesdays and Thursdays. We are a working farm, and work will be fast paced and dirty. Due to the diversity of our farming operation, a day at the farm may include a wide variety of tasks – weeding, mulching, planting, harvesting, caring for animals, and much more! Most likely you will have the opportunity to do multiple of these things in a day.
We love having volunteer groups and showing new folks around the farm, and this volunteer opportunity is a great way to understand real life on a farm. Volunteers will need to take direction well and work quickly. If you doubt that your group will be able to work with us in this manner, we recommend booking an educational workshop with us. We also offer hybrid volunteer and educational opportunities. We also offer lunch for $10 a plate.
We are happy to explore internship options with students. We have had interns from Clark University and Mt. Holyoke College in the past and are excited to take on additional interns this year! We cannot offer compensation for internships at this time but are happy to work with you to receive funding or credit from your school. Previous internships have focused on carbon sequestration, sustainability, organic farming, food sovereignty, and herbalism. All interns should also be excited to take home surplus food and enjoy a farm lunch on the days they come to the farm.
Weekend Chores Working Shareholder Opportunity
If you are interested in learning more about our broiler chickens, layer chickens, pigs, and turkeys we have a Saturday and a Sunday animal care working shareholder position. Work 1-2 hours from 8:00am – 10:00am on Saturday or Sunday in exchange for some breakfast and a dozen eggs. This position is great for someone who is unavailable during the week or has a particular affinity for farm animals. Note that this position will require some heavy lifting (we need to move mobile bird houses with a dolly and some heft and haul around 50 lb. bags of feed). Position is available from early to mid-April through Thanksgiving.
Contact Julie at email@example.com or 978-257-1192 (cell) for more
Click here to check out some tips for volunteering and the flow of the day in our volunteer manual!