Co-Director Position Open at Wangari Gardens!

fallfest

Wangari Gardens is looking for a new Co-Director to help coordinate and develop its programs, committees, and garden initiatives. This position is a unique and amazing opportunity to gain experience in the world of urban agriculture, community gardens, cooperative governance structures, food access non-profits, and community organizing and development around environmental, sustainable, educational, recreational, therapeutic and agriculture projects and programs.

  • Great opportunity for someone who is passionate about community outreach and organizing around green projects
  • Gain background and experience in organizing community projects in an urban agriculture environment
  • Offer insight into the process of organizing a 501c3
  • Endless opportunity to learn about urban agriculture, permaculture, environmental issues, and therapeutic garden programming
  • This position is unpaid but the rewards for you and the community go beyond monetary value

Responsibilities (shared among several passionate and dedicated Co-directors and garden leaders)

  • help coordinate our committees and their action plans (outreach, event planning, and maintenance)
  • help develop our Sunday open houses (workshops, events, internship program)
  • help recruit our new board (we just applied for a 501c3 status with an interim board but need to recruit a new one)
  • help coordinate our social media specialist
  • help design future garden projects and initiatives
  • help coordinate youth programming (summer youth, youth farmers market)
  • help coordinate volunteers and volunteer events
  • help with grant writing and fundraising

Requirements

  • 10 hours a week commitment (half during our Sunday open house and the rest spread out over the week)
  • Passion for outreach — Awareness of the importance that this is a community project to serve and reflect the needs of the local community. Outreaching the community for feedback, suggestions and opportunities is an important part of this garden.
  • Good communication skills
  • Comfortable talking in front of audiences (community meetings, workshops, presentations)
  • At least a novice understanding of gardening
  • Commitment until the end of the growing season in late Fall 2014

Things that aren’t requirements but will help

  • Living in the surrounding community (Park View, Petworth, Brookland, Shaw, etc) – the longer the better
  • Having a lot of experience with gardening – the more the better
  • Grant writing experience
  • Social media experience – especially website maintenance
  • Experience in organizing and delegating tasks and projects

If you are interested in interviewing for this position or you have any further questions please email us wangarigardens@gmail.com. Send us a resume and a 1-page cover letter explaining why you want to work at Wangari Gardens and what you can bring. Check out our Idealist post.

Thank you for your time.

Josh Singer

Executive Director of Wangari Gardens

Want more information? Learn more about Wangari Gardens:

Wangari Gardens is a new 2.7 acre garden park being created by its surrounding neighborhood in the heart of Washington, DC. As a very diverse and community oriented neighborhood, this area of the city suffers from high obesity, diabetes, heart disease rates, and malnutrition, especially among children. There are few grocery options available, and many residents rely on corner stores, which sell little amounts of fresh produce or healthy food. Neighbors have come together to turn a largely unused green space into a garden and park that will help connect the community through growing healthy food, and making a beautiful gathering space for children and their families.

The name Wangari Gardens was given in honor of the late Professor Wangari Maathai, an activist that fought for peace, environmental and social justice, and for women’s equality in East Africa. A Nobel Peace Prize winner, Professor Maathai founded the Greenbelt Movement, a movement which is responsible for planting 40 million trees in Kenya. We wish to honor her life and continue her message of using unused green space for the non-profit benefit of the surrounding community. Her legacy of bringing community together to protect the environment while bettering their lives is what inspired us to name the park Wangari Gardens.

Wangari Gardens is a unique garden in the sense that it serves more than just its garden plot holders. The focal point of the garden is a 110-plot community garden, including accessible plots for people with disabilities, rented out to local community members. Almost a dozen are given away for free to low income families. In addition to their plots, each plot holder signs an agreement to spend at least 2 hours a month watering and maintaining numerous public gardens. Anyone is allowed to come pick fresh fruit and vegetables in these public gardens with the intentions of not making Wangari Gardens exclusive to only people who get plots. We call this model a “garden park”. Our mission is for Wangari Gardens to be a garden park, cared for by community members, as a gathering space for education, food production, and recreation.

Public Gardens and Urban Ag Systems

  • 45 fruit tree forest garden orchard
  • public vegetable garden
  • herb garden
  • medicinal garden
  • perennial vegetable garden
  • accessibility/sensory garden
  • berry garden
  • educational native garden
  • bee hive
  • community drop off compost system

Current Garden Programs

  • cooperatively managed public garden program
  • summer youth program and youth farmers market
  • community compost drop off cooperative
  • garden internship program
  • garden education programs and workshops
  • cooperative bee keeping
  • multiple yearly garden and community events
  • tool share

Future Garden Projects

  • develop more garden educational workshops and events
  • work with DC water to design and implement a raingarden with an underground cistern to capture and reuse rain water
  • build a sustainable material strawbale tool shed
  • develop a seedling program in our coldframes
  • develop a home garden installation program for community members unable to get to the garden
  • develop a gleaning program for a free CSA for local low income households
  • finish our accesibilty garden for gardeners in wheelchairs
  • finish our 501c3 nonprofit application with an interim board and need to recurit a permament board
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