CRAFT South Western Ontario
Welcome to CRAFT South Western Ontario!
If you’re ready for a full, hands-on experience that will immerse you in ecological farming then you’ve come to the right place. CRAFT Ontario is your gateway to a farming internship experience that will change your life. Whether your dream is to have your own organic farm one day, or just want to learn some food-growing and hands-on skills that can be applied in other careers and lifestyles, a farming internship is a powerful experience that will equip you with the tools and insights to make a real difference in the world.
The CRAFT network in Ontario began with our regional network in South Western Ontario. We drew upon the framework of the original CRAFT network in Massachusetts and New York states. We have since been joined by regional nodes of CRAFT Ontario that are being formed throughout the province.
Each CRAFT farm operates independently and offers its own internship with individualized agreements around such things as living and eating arrangements, stipends, work hours, and training methods. For more details see the farm descriptions below and contact individual farms directly to apply or ask further questions.
If you are a successful applicant to a CRAFT farm then you will live, work and learn at that farm for a full growing season.
South Western CRAFT Ontario Farms (accepting 2014 applicants):
- Cedar Down Farm
- Everdale Organic Farm & Learning Centre
- Fertile Ground CSA
- Fiddle Foot Farm
- Ignatius Farm CSA (positions filled for 2014)
- Kawthoolei Farm Organics
- ManoRun Farm
- Mapleton’s Organic Dairy
- Marvellous Edibles Farm
- Meeting Place Organic Farm (positions filled for 2014)
- Orchard Hill Farm (positions filled for 2014)
- Persephone Market Garden (positions filled for 2014)
- Plan B Farm
- Reroot Organic CSA (positions filled for 2014)
- Saugeen River CSA
- Shared Harvest Community Farm
- Whole Circle Farm
The best time to apply is before mid-February since many farms try to finalize their internship arrangements by March. Our list above indicates which farms are still receiving applications for the current season.
For more info on applying to CRAFT SW Ontario farms, see CRAFT SW Ontario Application and Selection Process.
WHAT HAPPENS AT THE CRAFT FIELD TRIPS IN SOUTH WESTERN ONTARIO?
The field trip schedule for CRAFT in South Western Ontario includes monthly field trips to six of the CRAFT farms. All farms arrange for their interns to participate fully in each field trip. The itinerary for each CRAFT Day is as follows:
- a talk or workshop on a specific topic/activity that is an important element of a sustainable farm (e.g. farm equipment, soil fertility, livestock care, business planning.)
- a pot-luck lunch
- a farm tour/field-walk
- a work project or group activity
Requirements of Member Farms of CRAFT in South Western Ontario
- offers a full-season organic farming internship;
- operates according to organic standards. Organic certification is not required, but practices must meet or exceed the Canadian Organic Standard;
- grows food and sells or barters it to other people;
- has a full-time farmer working at the farm who has at least 3 years of commercial growing experience
- sends their interns to all six of the monthly CRAFT field trips;
- hosts a CRAFT field trip or participates in a panel once every year or as needed;
- sends a farmer to at least three CRAFT days;
- participates in the CRAFT Farmers planning and evaluation meetings located in SW Ontario;
- volunteers one in every three years on a CRAFT farmer working group;
- contributes an annual membership fee to cover advertising and administration costs;
- provides baseline data about the farm for CRAFT interns;
- communicates with the CRAFT node members via the CRAFT farmer listserve.
The details of a farm internship vary from one farm to another, but all internships are based on an exchange that involves the intern’s labour and commitment and the farmer’s instruction, supervision, education, time and commitment. The internship agreement is between the farmer and the intern, and not with CRAFT Ontario.
New farm applications are due by Nov 15th for the following season. Please contact the South Western Coordinator, Amy Ouchterlony: firstname.lastname@example.org for general inquiries or application information.