Urban Fruit Tree Arborist Volunteer
We are looking for a skilled volunteer to help maintain NRC’s community fruit trees and shrubs. You would be taking care of our existing 6 fruit trees, native blueberries and native chokeberries, by helping out with pruning and soil amendments. There are also opportunities to plant new fruit trees if this lines up with your interests and time commitments. In Fulton, a low resource community where many residents face significant barriers to healthy food access, NRC seeks to provide both greater access to healthy foods, as well as the skills and resources for community members to grow their own food. The fruit trees and other edible landscaping on our property are both openly available to the Fulton community as well as part of our youth garden and cooking education with NRC’s afterschool program.
Requirements of Position: We are looking for a volunteer with background or training in tree maintenance, preferably with experience with fruit trees/ orchards. Volunteers should be willing to follow our policy for using natural methods for pest, disease, and weed control, with an eye towards minimizing negative impact on our water system.
Training Provided: All volunteers go through a general NRC orientation before volunteering, in an hour-long session which can be scheduled 1 on 1 according to your schedule. After orientation, there will be a training on tool safety which can also be scheduled according to volunteer schedule. If, after getting started with the position, you are interested in your volunteer position expanding to include programming with community members or youth, on-going training would include trauma-informed care and equity-based community engagement.
Location: Volunteering will be onsite at the Neighborhood Resource Center.
Time Commitment: We are asking for a 6 month commitment to volunteering, but this volunteer position is very flexible for what hours work for you. NRC’s program hours are typically Monday-Friday 10 am-6 pm, but you can volunteer on your own time during the weekend if preferred.
The estimate of number of hours required is based on season:
November-February: 5-10 hours a month.
February- May: 5-10 hours a month
May- October: 0-5 hours/ month
Pruning, collecting samples for soil tests, reading and interpreting soil tests, and making appropriate soil amendments.
Communicating with NRC garden coordinator about necessary tools or supplies, and hours of work.
If you are interested in supporting more fruit tree plantings at the NRC, or are interested in supporting Fulton community members growing fruit trees, duties can vary with interest.
Volunteers will be part of creating greater food access for the Fulton community, and have the opportunity to meet community members who are engaged and passionate about growing their own food. Our orientation is an opportunity to learn about the history of Fulton and engage with community-led programs and development.
You will be added to a mailing list with NRC events, and have the opportunity to participate in gardening skills workshops offered to the Fulton community.
Can be involved hands-on in planning process for future tree installations, will be connected with network of urban farmers in Richmond.
Can take home excess produce and harvest any herbs available in our garden on days when you come in to volunteer.