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Core team positions: Gardener, Soil Builder, Builder, Eco-Forester, Kitchen Witch/Wizard
Organization: Forest Gardens

Location: Salt Spring Island, BC
Accommodation: yes (see below)
Dates: April – October 2021

Remun.: volunteer plus free participation in the Permaculture Design Course, plus food, accommodation and living supplies (see below)

The Core Team is an intensive immersion in Permaculture Design, Regenerative Agriculture, homesteading, eco-forestry & intentional community building that will help you increase your knowledge, skills and confidence to create positive change in your life and community.

We invite people who are motivated, self directed, and collaborative to join us for a full season of theoretical and practical learning.

We are excited to live and work with people who are passionate about living regeneratively and working to support life and future generations.

The Core Team is meant for people who have developed their skills and life vision, and are looking to refine and enhance their knowledge and competency by stepping into a leadership and decision making role.

The Core Team works closely with both the Land Stewards and Apprentices to design, implement, maintain and evolve specific aspects of the farm and homestead.

Positions Available:


Do you love having your hands in the soil?

Do you want to grow food that nurtures the health of humans and the ecosystem?

Then come join us for a full seasonal cycle in the garden, from seed planting to seed saving!

As a Gardener your main responsibilities will include:

  • garden preparation and management:
    • propagation
    • integrated pest management
    • weeding
    • harvesting
    • seed saving
  • implementing soil building techniques:
    • compost
    • compost tea
    • vermicompost
    • biochar
  • working with the building team to design hoop houses, trellises, and any other structure the plants may need
  • designing and managing the watering schedule
  • documenting and recording garden data
  • managing the chicken tractors

You will work in collaboration with Nomi, our multi-talented Head Gardener and Land Steward. With five seasons under her belt, she has spearheaded many projects to restore health to the soil, determine optimal crops for our climate, and design the spaces and processes needed for a successful season from planting to harvest. We grow approximately 80 different species of plants in the garden, and are implementing a range of Regenerative practices including working with the soil food web, utilizing integrated pest management, companion planting, and beyond organic standards. This position will provide you with the experience and confidence to develop and maintain your own homestead scale vegetable garden. Within this role, you will be given opportunities to oversee specific areas of the garden and manage specialized projects with the support of the apprentices which will help you develop your leadership and mentoring skills.

Soil Builder

Do you love playing in the dirt, sinking your hands into deep dark soil?

Does making compost piles and magical elixers of compost tea delight you?

Then come be the driving force behind our soil fertility program!

As you learn the different ways of making, monitoring and applying soil building techniques you will create ever greater amounts of rich living soil that will nurture and nourish the garden for years to come!

Some of your responsibilities will include:

  • making and applying compost, compost extract and compost teas to the gardens
  • monitoring and analyzing the the life in the soil
  • helping expand and manage the worm farm
  • collecting and applying worm leachate and castings to the garden
  • making and monitoring worm towers
  • making and applying biochar
  • working closely with the garden team to help build soil fertility and organic matter


Do you love creating things with wood, rocks and metal?

Do you enjoy designing structures to be functional, durable and aesthetically pleasing?

Then come help us create the physical infrastructure that will support and protect the farm and homestead for years to come!

As the builder, your main responsibilities will include:

  • helping design the different structures
  • creating materials lists
  • selecting the trees to harvest
  • skinning the trees
  • preparing foundations
  • framing with dimensional lumber and pole wood
  • installing windows, roofing and siding depending on the project

Over the season you will work closely with the Land Stewards to build and setup a number of different structures including:

  • gates
  • fencing
  • firewood sheds
  • a tipi
  • an outhouse
  • greenhouses
  • trellises
  • a food dehydrator
  • tool storage systems

Mentoring the apprentices in the building projects will provide you the opportunity to develop your teaching style simultaneously as you expand your building skills.

This position is intended for someone who already has basic carpentry skills and wants to gain experience using raw wood from the forest to create various farm structures.


Are you fascinated by forests?

Do you want to learn how to work with the patterns and processes of nature to help the forest become more healthy, diverse and productive?

Do you want to gain the skills, knowledge and experience to be able to speed up forest regeneration?

Then come help us transform the recently logged plantation forest that we are stewarding towards an abundant and regenerative future!

As Eco-Forester your main responsibilities will include:

  • helping to design the forest management plan
  • assessing tree health
  • managing the materials and equipment for working in the forest (including chain saws, biochar kiln, wood chipper, falling equipment & safety gear)
  • working with the building team to harvest and process materials from the forest
  • thinning ground debris and forest ladders for fire prevention
  • bucking and limbing felled trees
  • assisting tree felling with directional assists
  • chipping wood
  • making biochar
  • planting and caring for forest species
  • establishing ecological reserves
  • working with the soil building team to build healthy forest soil

Working closely with Nick and the Forestry Team, we will start by designing the management plan for the season and learning the skills and procedures to work safely and effectively in the forest. Then as we implement our management plan, we will explore the various techniques and approaches to help speed up the regeneration of the forest. This position will teach you many of the skills involved in the logging and forestry industry, within a regenerative framework, and is intended for someone who is passionate about working with the forest.

Kitchen Witch/Wizard

Do you love nurturing community by creating delicious and nutritious food?

Are you passionate about making a lively & lovely space for cooking, eating and connecting?

Then come infuse the heart of Forest Gardens with your nourishing magic!

As the Kitchen Witch/Wizard your main responsibilities will include:

  • planning & preparing communal meals (with assistance)
  • overseeing dish washing & kitchen cleanup tasks
  • foraging for naturally growing foods & medicines
  • tending the wild areas to encourage the growth of beneficial species
  • processing harvested plants in various ways such as fermenting, drying, salting, pickling, smoking
  • maintaining the food inventory & grocery list
  • helping design the evolution of the kitchen space including the work-flows and layout of storage and processing spaces

Our main sources of food include salvaged produce from the local grocer, bulk orders of various grains, legumes and spices, and what we grow in the garden. In order to utilize the variable food selection we have each week, creativity and flexibility are needed in this position. We usually need to accommodate various dietary restrictions within a meal, and comfort with vegetarian, gluten free and vegan cooking is an asset. Since the kitchen becomes a focal gathering area within the community, a key eye for organization and work-flow design will help this area run smoothly and evolve beautifully.


The Core Team program runs from April 5th, 2021 to October 31st, 2021.


In honor of the hard work and commitment that the Core Team brings to Forest Gardens, we offer a multi-season stipend program that incentivizes people to return for subsequent years:

In your first season as a Core Team member we will provide:

  • free participation in the Permaculture Design Course
  • your food, accommodation and living supplies (toilet paper, soaps, propane, firewood)

In your second season as a Core Team member we will provide:

  • a monthly stipend of $450
  • free participation in the Permaculture Design Course
  • your food, accommodation and living supplies (toilet paper, soaps, propane, firewood)

If you decide to return for a third season we will work together to create a customized position for you.


If interested, please e-mail your resume and expression of interest to:
subject: Core Team

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Note: This posting is provided on an "As Is" basis and for general informational purposes only. People and Planet (also known as "GoodWork") is not responsible for the content, accuracy, timeliness, completeness, legality, reliability, quality or suitability of this posting. We do not screen or endorse the organizations or individuals involved. If you decide to accept an offer of employment, volunteering or any other arrangement, you do so at your own risk and it is your responsibility to take all protective measures to guard against injury, abuse, non-payment or any other loss. Please read our full Terms & Conditions.

Current status: Open/apply now.   Date posted: Jan 17 2021    ID: 58344