Community Roots
A Garden Training Program for Young Adults
Community Roots is a new leadership training program with employment, community engagement and food justice at its core. The program is centered in the Hunter School Garden which has been a source of fresh food and pride in the South Fairbanks community for many years. Now accepting applications for 2022!
Become a Garden Leader

Join Kendalyn, Community Roots Program Director, in leading the way to a healthier future for our community!

Be part of a team of employed Garden Leaders who will:

    • Plant and care for the Hunter Garden
    • Lead young children in exploring the garden
    • Cook garden produce and teach others
    • Learn about Food Justice and food security
    • Learn how to run a farm stand
    • Work to create goals and action plans for neighorhood food security
    • Document the experience in the program using audio and video
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As a Garden Leader you will learn how to grow food for your community, gain work experience for your resume, develop strong community connections, and earn a living while you learn valuable skills! No experience is necessary - all you need is an interest in growing food and working with the community!

Apply NOW for the 2022 program!


2021 Graduates

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"I have accomplished and learned so much about gardens and sustainability as a Garden Leader with the Community Roots Program. We transformed an empty back yard into a beautiful garden completely by hand. We also learned from community leaders about soil testing, fermentation techniques, and cooking tips. What I’ve learned from this program has been incredibly empowering, Nowadays, there is nothing more valuable than knowing how to start and maintain your own garden and eat locally grown veggies. I’m very grateful to have been accepted for this job and work with such amazing people. BEST. SUMMER. EVER."

— Shayna Matson

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"I am so grateful to have had this experience! My time working with Calypso Farm has been so fun and so insightful. I’ve learned so much about plant life and people and we’ve even learned culinary skills! My co-workers have become lifelong friends and I have developed skills that I will use throughout the rest of my life. This garden has had a permanent positive impact on my life. I highly recommend being a part of this team."

— Piper Suscha

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"It’s been so lovely working in the Community Roots Garden. Meeting inspirational young women and building community and knowledge from one another. From breaking ground to eating a home cooked meal, there is so much to know and so many steps to take. It’s been an incredible summer that I won’t forget. Becoming a part of the Calypso family has been an eventful and joyous occasion. I look forward to starting my own garden and sharing my new found knowledge as well as collaborating with Calypso and our amazing Community Roots 2021 girls’ gang!"

— Nanieezh Peter

What is a Garden Leader?

Open to ages 16-24

Garden Leaders will gain work experience and job skills by engaging in hands-on garden training while growing food in the Hunter School Garden to distribute to the community throughout the summer as they learn about food justice, food security, and organic farming practices.

Preference will be given to applicants who live in the South Fairbanks neighborhood and have previously attended Hunter Elementary School. Black, Indigenous and people of color are encouraged to apply!

Program Dates: May 23th - August 20th, 2022
(optional early start as soon as May 9th or when ground is clear enough)

Work Days: Monday-Thursday from 9am-1pm with breaks as needed. Starting at the end of June, we will go to the Southside Market on Tuesdays from 4-7pm to run a farm stand selling garden grown produce.

Graduation Event: Saturday, August 20th

Pay: $15/hr and a weekly veggie share

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Kendalyn Mckisick
Community Roots Director


Position Duties:

    • With guidance, complete garden tasks on time
    • Be on time and reliable (Garden Leaders must attend at least 11/13 weeks in order to officially complete the program)
    • Complete assigned readings to engage in group learning and conversations
    • Independent research on subjects of interest (research will take place both during and outside of scheduled work hours)
    • Work with children in the garden to teach basic farm science education
    • With guidance, manage a tool library for the Southside community
    • Welcome volunteers and community members into the garden (this includes giving small trainings on how to use tools, giving tours, and/or public speaking)

Qualifications:

    • Interest in growing fresh food
    • Works well with others
    • Interest in building community through sharing knowledge and skills
    • Enjoys being outside
    • Enjoys working on a team
    • Eager to learn
    • Doesn’t mind getting dirty
    • Ability to get to the garden each day and the Southside Market

Garden Leaders will need to come prepared each day with:

    • Close-toed and durable shoes that you don't mind getting dirty
    • A hat to keep sun out of your eyes
    • A pair of garden gloves to protect your hands while using tools
    • A rain jacket for rainy days
    • A water bottle to refill throughout the day as needed
If you are interested in applying but have barriers to acquiring anything on this list, we can provide assistance!


Do you have questions about the program? Contact Kendalyn Mckisick, Community Roots Program Director at kendalyn@calypsofarm.org or 907-378-7100.
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Your support makes this program possible!
The majority of the support for Community Roots comes from individuals like you! Click here to make a contribution towards the program!