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Now Hiring: Farm Education Director (Castello di Spannocchia, Italy)

OVERVIEW


The Associazione Castello di Spannocchia is hiring for a new Farm Education Director to oversee farm-based educational programming at the Tenuta di Spannocchia. The residential position is located at the Castello di Spannocchia, an agritourism and educational farm in Tuscany, 20km southwest of Siena.

The Farm Education Director is responsible for the continued development, management, and success of the organization’s Farm Internship, Butcher & Culinary Apprenticeships, and Farm Volunteer programs. In this role, the Education Director serves as a liaison between the interns and volunteers and the rest of the Spannocchia community, working closely with farm staff to determine and advise on intern and volunteer work assignments, farm projects and farming decisions, and to ensure the educational quality of the hands-on work experience.

In addition, the Farm Education Director helps to develop and oversee materials, activities, and tours that educate guests on the following subjects: Spannocchia history, Tuscan cuisine and culture, organic agriculture and the basics of the farm operation, sustainability, and conservation. As a Spannocchia resident and member of the management team, this individual serves as a central resource for the community of interns, other residents, guests, and visitors.

Please note: To be eligible to work at Spannocchia, you must have a European passport, or a permit to work legally in Italy.

Duties and Responsibilities


INTERNSHIP PROGRAMS (FARM INTERNSHIP & BUTCHER/CULINARY APPRENTICESHIPS)

Pre-Internship Prep (15%)

  • Create and maintain all informational material for the interns, butcher & culinary apprentices, and winter volunteers.
  • Work with Friends of Spannocchia staff to communicate and market programs.
  • Run the application and selection process for each internship/apprenticeship session.
  • Provide all pre-arrival information to participants; organize and lead virtual meet-and-greet for interns before each session.
  • Maintain and share educational resources and suggested reading/learning lists for interns before arrival.
  • Organize and lead in-person orientation weekend for each intern session upon arrival to Spannocchia; conduct pre-session goal interviews with all interns.

Day-to-Day Running of Programs (60%)

  • Coordinate farm intern work assignments with farm supervisors throughout each session and at the start of each work day; facilitate communications between interns and Italian staff.
  • Stay in close communication with Farm and Associazione staff about the needs of the interns and vice versa.
  • Work on the farm each morning, with rotating responsibilities/tasks depending on what is needed and in order to have a good understanding of all areas; work alongside interns during group projects, and during special harvests.
  • Lead or coordinate (with other presenters/instructors) weekly educational presentations and Italian lessons for interns; develop new educational presentations and supporting materials as needed.
  • Organize and supervise bi-weekly field trips.
  • Oversee weekly Pizza Night and Nostra Cena dinners, including Wine on the Terrace.
  • Guide weekly intern meetings; facilitate mid-session and end-of-session appreciation and feedback opportunities (special meal/activity, interviews with all interns).
  • Work with the Program Director to help organize presentations or closing events by the program groups for the interns and others in the Spannocchia community.
  • Inform interns about cultural and educational events in the area; encourage use of Italian language and educate about Italian culture on an informal basis.
  • Ensure that the interns have access to health care as needed.

Program Administration (5%)

  • Pay bills, take out money from ATM.
  • Set monthly and yearly budget with Castello Director and Friends of Spannocchia staff.
  • Take photos of interns, internship projects/activities; help with social media content.
  • Put together a short internship summary/“yearbook” at the end of each session.

VOLUNTEER PROGRAM (WINTER VOLUNTEERS & WWOOFers) (10%)

  • Oversee winter volunteer application process, orientation, and day-to-day needs.
  • Handle correspondence, acceptance/scheduling, and work assignments for WWOOF volunteers; manage WWOOF organization membership.
  • Provide assistance and as many educational opportunities as possible for volunteers.

FARM-TO-TABLE EDUCATION (5%)

  • Understand areas on the farm that are conducive to guest tours/activities and help to develop and improve tours, tastings, activities, etc. to introduce guests and visitors to the farm at Spannocchia.
  • Inform guests about all aspects of Spannocchia on an informal basis.
  • Potentially be available to help with leading tours on occasion. 

OTHER (5%)

  • Continue to help build relationships with other educational farms and organizations around the world.
  • Help with festas: Primo Maggio, Thanksgiving, Halloween.
  • Be available to cover the needs of guest services staff as requested.

QUALIFICATIONS


Candidates for this position should be passionate about regenerative agriculture, experiential education, and Tuscan culture and cuisine; have excellent organizational, communication, and leadership skills; and have the ability and interest to live and work in a multicultural setting. 

The ideal candidate will possess:

  • Hands-on experience and knowledge of principles of sustainable and organic farming; prior professional experience in farm-based education a significant plus.
  • Experience working with food and/or interest in farm-to-table cuisine, Slow Food, and sustainable food practices.
  • Group management experience, including comfort with leading presentations and navigating group dynamics.
  • A strong but collaborative demeanor, working well as part of a team with diverse backgrounds and needs, while able to comfortably assert authority when necessary.
  • Proficiency in both English and Italian.
  • Flexibility, humor, creativity, and a sense of adventure.

Candidates should have a bachelor’s degree (at minimum) in a field pertaining to the position. Must be comfortable with driving a large stick-shift vehicle; as such, a full clean driver’s license is necessary. To be eligible to work at Spannocchia, you must have a European passport, or a permit to work legally in Italy. Spannocchia is not able to obtain this for our employees.

Salary commensurate with experience, with room & board included. To apply, please email your CV and a letter of interest to castello@spannocchia.org. Hiring by mid-late November 2021 with position to start in early January 2022.