OFT is Hiring an Intern

Interested in working in the agricultural field? Passionate about local food and farmland?Join the OFT Team!

The Policy & Land Program Assistant will work closely with OFT’s Executive Director, staff, and volunteers.  The Program Assistant is responsible for the overall coordination of OFT’s policy work, in collaboration with the Policy & Education Committee, and contributing to land securement initiatives and ongoing stewardship of protected properties.  Job duties will include:

Farmland Protection Policy Research & Development (30%)

  • – Monitoring farmland protection policy development across the Province at various levels of government: tracking improvements, policy limitations, emerging trends, and new challenges to achieving effective farmland preservation through policy
  • – Researching, drafting, and submitting OFT’s policy positions and recommendations to government, with support for OFT’s Policy & Education Committee
  • – Engaging with government and partners to build support for land securement and farmland preservation policy development
  • – Planning the annual Farmland Forum, which supports the long-term sustainability of Ontario farmland

Farmland Protection, Land Securement & Stewardship (30%)

  • – Assisting with the land securement process in collaboration with landowners, partners, contractors and professional advisors (eg. ecologists, lawyers, appraisers, surveyors)
  • – Coordinating stewardship activities and site visits to monitor already-protected easement properties and maintain positive working relationships with current and future landowners
  • – Maintaining relationships and communication with potential land and easement donors on the securement project waiting list
  • – Assisting in identifying key farmlands for protection in communities in Ontario
  • – Coordinating and attending site visits to assess potential farm protection sites
  • – Writing technical reports as part of the land securement process detailing property geography,
    ecology, and land uses
  • – Participating in OFT’s Land Securement and Stewardship Committee

Outreach & Engagement (20%)

  • – Distributing land securement information and promoting OFT’s Farmland Protection Program where opportunities arise (eg. speaking events, community meetings, technical working groups)
  • – Planning, organizing, and attending outreach and education events such as booths at farmers’ markets and festivals
  • – Planning farm celebrations on recently protected farms
  • – Responding to general inquiries about OFT programs
  • – Contributing to OFT’s newsletter, blog, and social media

Fundraising, as shared by all staff (20%)

  • – Researching and writing grant applications to various foundations
  • – Investigating opportunities for sponsorship
  • – Assisting with appeals and seasonal mailings

Required Skills & Attributes

  • – A degree or diploma focused on rural planning, agricultural science, environmental studies, or a related discipline
  • – Knowledge of land use planning, and provincial plans and policy such as the Provincial Policy Statement, Planning Act, Conservation Land Act, and the Greenbelt Plan
  • – Excellent verbal and written communications skills
  • – Strong interpersonal skills
  • – Motivated and able to work independently with minimal supervision
  • – Strong time-management and organizational skills
  • – Well organized and able to set priorities, develop work schedules, monitor progress towards goals, and track important data, information, and activities
  • – Team-player with a positive attitude and commitment to working cooperatively with others
  • – Experience in grant writing and fundraising considered an asset
  • – Hands-on experience using Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint)
  • – Passionate about agriculture, farmland protection, and land conservation
  • – Access to a vehicle and a valid driver’s license considered an asset (some work and events will occur offsite). When required to drive offsite, mileage will be paid.

Additional Information: We have a small staff complement of less than three full time staff.  The Program Assistant will have a high level of responsibility and accountability right from the start.  We pride ourselves in having a culture that facilitates communication, creativity, and professional development.  We work closely with each intern to ensure they are gaining experience relevant to their future career goals.

This position is funded by the Agricultural Youth Green Jobs Initiative, which requires the candidate to:

  • – Be a Canadian post-secondary graduate
  • – Be 30 years old or younger at the start of the internship;
  • – Not have been previously employed full time by the applicant;
  • – Not have participated in any other Youth Employment Strategy programs (ie. Career Focus);
  • – Be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident; and
  • – Be legally entitled to work.

Details: $16 hourly wage, 37.5 hours per week, beginning immediately for 39 weeks with a possibility for extension. The weekly schedule will vary, as occasional evening and weekend work will be required.  A flexible arrangement with the option to work from home could be arranged by mutual agreement.

Location: OFT office at the University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario

To Apply: Please forward your cover letter, resume, and references (in one document) via e-mail to kathryn@ontariofarmlandtrust.ca by Monday March 12, 2018, 5:00pm EST. Only candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.

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