Farmhand/Livestock Crew Sylvester Manor Educational Farm
- Date Posted September 15, 2023
- Location Shelter Island, NY
- Category Agriculture / Nonprofit
- Job type Part-Time
The lands of Shelter Island’s Sylvester Manor were once the hunting, fishing and farming ground of the Indigenous Manhansett People. The site known today as Sylvester Manor was home to eleven generations of Sylvester descendants. Gifted to the nonprofit organization Sylvester Manor Educational Farm in 2014, the historic site is the most intact slaveholding plantation remnant north of Virginia. Over the past 400 years, Sylvester Manor has been a provisioning plantation, an 18th-century Enlightenment-era farm, a pioneering food industrialist’s summer estate, and today includes the 1737 built Manor House, a 19th-century restored windmill, an Afro-Indigenous Burial Ground, a working farm, and educational and cultural arts programming that are open to all. Sylvester Manor was designated a district of national significance on the National Register of Historic Places in 2015.
Our farm operation currently consists of 7+ acres of vegetables, 150 laying hens and 30+ pigs. Each year, we sign the NOFA Farmer's Pledge to produce healthy food using environmentally responsible and humane practices while providing fair working conditions and wages. The produce from our farm feeds 150 CSA families, stocks our farmstand and is wholesaled to local restaurants.
Sylvester Manor is hiring a part-time Winter Farmhand for the 2023/2024 Fall and Winter Season! Is your summer farm job / apprentice wrapping up for the season? Are you looking to experience year-round farming, and be provided with free housing? You’re in luck! We are seeking a hardworking, high-energy, positive individual, motivated by a career in agriculture to start this Oct/November and work with us through the winter (potential to stay on for the 2024 season is a possibility if the right fit).
We encourage both seasoned farmers and first time farmers to apply. The farm's diverse makeup allows for both experienced and new farmers alike to thrive and it offers many different hands-on learning opportunities. As a Winter Farmhand you’ll learn and/or advance your skills in livestock management, greenhouse construction, vegetable season extension, spring and perennial flower production, cover crop and field maintenance transitioning from end of summer to Fall/Winter, crop planning and seed ordering, compost management, and so much more!
Farm work is extremely physically demanding, a willingness and ability to work outdoors in all types of weather — heat, rain, sun, wind, and cold — is also a requirement.
Shelter Island is a beautiful place accessible only by ferry via both Sag Harbor and Greenport, LI. Living on Shelter Island you’ll have access to bay and ocean beaches, nature preserves, hiking, and so much more amongst a vibrant community. Although quiet in the winter, there are many fun activities both on farm and on the island to participate in.
Job Duration & Hours
The position starts in Oct/Nov 2023 through Late Feb/March with the opportunity to stay on as a Farm Hand / Apprentice or other positions that might suit the candidate as we are an ever-evolving and expanding farm. If the fit is right, there are opportunities to grow into other seasonal and year round positions.
This position is part-time but could increase depending on the changing needs of the farm and time of year. Weekend responsibilities are shared among farm crew. Major Holidays will not be a requirement to work.
What We Offer:
- Free shared housing: private bedroom and bathroom, communal laundry, kitchen and living room. At this time we cannot accommodate pets or significant others in employee housing.
- Pay commensurate with experience (Starting at $15 per hour)
- 5 Paid Days Off (to be used within the season)
- Professional development stipend
- Free vegetables and eggs from the farm in season and 20% off all Farmstand products
- Working in an environment where farmers: take joy and pride in their work, look out for their fellow crew members and team, and learn together
- Opportunities for growth and longevity at Sylvester Manor and in farming/agriculture
- Livestock (chickens):
- AM chicken care
- Egg Collection
- Close Chickens (we have electric doors!)
- Additional weekly and monthly responsibilities including: managing chicken bedding
- Weekly livestock maintenance: spreading wood chips, troubleshooting, filling bulk feeders
- Assist with all other farm tasks including, but not limited to: greenhouse repair, compost management, drip tape removal, landscape fabric removal, general clean up and organization, clearing paths in woods for electric fences (we also raise pigs!), spreading compost, mowing
Other tasks may come up and evolve throughout the winter. This position reports directly to the Farm Manager. This position will require working weekends.
- A positive attitude and willingness to work and live with others in harmony
- Flexibility as the needs of the farm evolve
- Excellent communication skills, record keeping and timely responsiveness
- Fluency in Google docs, sheets and calendar
- The ideal candidate will be able to safely operate a tractor, bobcat, front loader and other implements (training could be provided for the right candidate)
- Employees are expected to fulfill the following physical tasks: bending, kneeling, sitting, carrying, walking, squatting, standing, sometimes up to 10 hours at a time. Employees are required to lift up to 50 lbs.
- This position requires working outdoors in all weather conditions including: cold, wet, windy, rainy, hot, snowy, humid, dry and sunny.
- Must be able to legally operate a vehicle
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