Volunteer

Volunteer with Sierra Harvest Today!

Meet new friends, develop new skills and gain a sense of accomplishment by volunteering. Bring fresh, healthy food and nutrition education to Nevada County families while having fun too.

  • 2018 Volunteer Sierra Garden Crew of the Year

347 volunteers donated more than 3,870 volunteer hours this past year building capacity for our local food movement. Earn Discounts at the BriarPatch Food Co-op | Free admission to Soup Night, Food & Farm Conference, and more!

Featured Volunteer Opportunities – August, 2019

Tasting Days Chef

Sierra Harvest seeks local chefs and folks who are passionate about cooking to cook with students and provide tastings in western Nevada County elementary and high schools Sept. 30 – Nov. 1, 2019.  This educational program is part of our Farm to School Program and will be offered to almost 3,000 students at 24 elementary schools and 4 high schools.  The chefs will demonstrate preparation and cooking techniques using healthy recipes and involve students in preparation of a dish using seasonal fruits and vegetables from local farms at schools containing at least 50% seasonal crops by weight.  The recipes highlight a seasonal crop ideally grown by a Nevada County farm participating in Sierra Harvest’s Farm to School Program.  

Chefs are paid $50 per half-hour cooking demonstration plus preparation, clean up and transition time.  Generally, 4 classes are scheduled with short breaks at one school serving approximately 120 students for a total of $200 on one day. 

More info and details on qualifications to participate as a Tasting Day chef for 2019!

Professional Quality Photographer for Farm Photos

Do you have a professional quality camera?  If so, volunteer to spend an afternoon on a local farm snapping pictures of the farm landscape, farm produce, farmer and the Ag Skills students attending an on-farm class.  Upcoming opportunities to capture the magic of training the next generation of local farmers (you can do 1 or more of these dates):

July 16th, 4-6pm @ Stone’s Throw Farm in Colfax

July 23rd, 4-6pm @ Chapman Family Farm in Nevada City

July 30th, 4-6pm @ Starbright Acres Family Farm in Grass Valley

Aug 27th, 4-6 pm @ First Rain Farm in Nevada City

Full volunteer job description here.

Qualifications and Skills Required: Being a professional photographer is not required.  However, excellent photo equipment will be necessary and an excellent and creative eye.

Staff Contact: Kalita Todd at kalita@sierraharvest.org if you are interested in photographing any of these important moments!

Gleaning Volunteer – June – October

Volunteers harvest fruit and veggies from June-Oct. all over Nevada County that would otherwise go to waste from farms and home orchards donating the produce to Interfaith Food Ministry (IFM) to be distributed to those in need.  All supplies are provided by Sierra Harvest and a volunteer Harvest Leader will lead the gleaning day including reviewing safety protocol and the gleaning process.  There are more than 8,000 clients at IFM with 25% of them children that you will be helping to bring fresh, local and seasonal food to nourish them!

Full volunteer job description here.

Time/Date: Varies each week with gleans generally taking about 1.5-2 hours.  You can sign up for as many gleans as you want!

Benefits of Volunteering:

Taste and take home seconds of delicious seasonal fruits and veggies. Bring a small bag to bring some home as a token of our appreciation.

Meet new friends.

Learn the seasonality of locally grown produce.

Additional Information:  Bring water, snack, wide-brimmed hat, sunscreen, and work gloves.  Wear closed toe shoes for safety.  Once you are signed up for a glean on the website, specific directions to the gleaning site will be emailed to you plus any other details for that glean.  Children may accompany you but they must be supervised at all times. 

Apply Now to be a volunteer gleaner at https://www.sierraharvest.org/gleaning/ and click on the volunteer link.  Complete the online form.  Once you are a registered volunteer gleaner, you can sign up for all future gleans on the website.  You will need to check back often for new gleans that are listed on the calendar.

Staff contact: Miriam Limov at miriam@sierraharvest.org

Gleaning Harvest Leader – June – October

Harvest Leaders are volunteers who love harvesting fruit who commit to leading a crew of volunteers up to twice a month June-Oct picking fruit that would otherwise go to waste from farms and home orchards and bringing it to Interfaith Food Ministry to be distributed to those in need. 

Full volunteer job description here.

Location:  Varies from glean to glean – all in Nevada County.

Time/Date: Commitment to 1-2 gleans/month from June – November with gleans being 2-4 hours each.

Training:  June 7th (12:15-1:15) and June 11th (3-5pm).  The June 7th training  will be a training on procedures at Interfaith Food Ministry where all tools are stored and gleaned produce is delivered.  The June 11th training is a training for the new gleaning website.

Staff contact: Miriam Limov at miriam@sierraharvest.org

Tabling Outreach – Year-round

Volunteer for a Sierra Harvest booth event and share your enthusiasm and passion with the public about our programs and how the public can get involved.  This activity could include a food tasting, kid’s food activities, helping people plant seeds and more depending on the event.  More info here.

Location:  Varies for every event.

Time/Date:  Varies for every event.

Time Commitment: Generally, the shift will be 1-2 hours per shift.   

Email Miriam to get trained today –  miriam@sierraharvest.org 

Food Love Farm Volunteer Day – Tuesdays April – June and Aug – Oct.

Come help at the Food Love Farm, our educational farm, where more than 2,000 students learn where their food comes from and get first-hand experience working on a farm.  Dig beds, plant, harvest, weed and learn about organic crop production alongside the fun Sierra Harvest staff. More info here.

Time Commitment: Tuesdays from 9am – noon from April – June and again August – October. No need to contact in advance of your participation – just show up.  However, if you are a group of 4 or more, then please do connect with Emily in advance so that she can be prepared with projects.

Time: You can help just 1, 2 or all 3 hours!

Staff Contact: Emily Koller for more info – emily@sierraharvest.org

Sierra Garden Mentor – Year-round

The Sierra Gardens program is looking for experienced and knowledgeable home gardeners who can be available to help throughout the growing season by assisting our gardening families with plant deliveries, planting, amending beds, irrigation repair, and all around support and advice. This support is in addition to what staff and volunteer build crews already provide. Schedule would be totally variable depending on what needs arise. Mentors can set their own schedule. Full volunteer position description here.  Contact Edy@sierraharvest.org to sign up and help families grow more food!

Would you like to volunteer with Sierra Harvest? Please fill out the form below and we will be in touch.
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