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Education Internship

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Denver Urban Gardens is searching for an intern to assist with our education programming. This internship is paid, and allows for a maximum of 20 hours a week for up to nine months. The deadline is coming up, so don’t dawdle! Click here for more information, including how to apply.

Campus Composting

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Compost Auraria is a group of volunteer composting advocates representing all three insitutions on Auraria campus. They’re working toward a campus-wide composting program, starting with a pilot program in the Tivoli Food Court. Check out yesterday’s news coverage of their efforts:

Shawn Hendrickson is a graduate of the Master Composter program that Denver Urban Gardens operates in partnership with Denver Recycles. The primary goal of that program is to train community members in the ins and outs of composting, and in turn, equip Master Composters to share their skills with the greater community. Props to Shawn and members of Compost Auraria for doing such a fantastic job bringing their knowledge and enthusiasm to the staff and students at the Auraria campus. To learn more about Compost Auraria, click here. To learn more about the Master Composter program, click here.

Are you ready to start composting at home? Denver Urban Gardens also offers free public compost trainings beginning in May (check back in April for a schedule!), and resource sheets on the basics of composting. 

Community Supported Agriculture

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DeLaney Community FarmCSA, or community supported agriculture, is a buzzword we’re hearing a lot these days. It’s frequently offered up as a solution to many of the problems with our nation’s food system: produce that travels hundreds or thousands of miles before it reaches the consumer, food that’s grown with pesticides, herbicides, or hormones, food that’s genetically modified, environmentally destructive growing practices, etc. Community supported agriculture is an agricultural model in which the farmer and consumer share in the risks and bounty of the farm. In practical terms, this means that you pay a set amount up front, and that helps the farmer cover the cost of production. In return, you receive freshly harvested shares of the farm’s produce (usually once a week) throughout the growing season. Some CSAs have farm pickups, some deliver directly to your door, and some have in-town pickup points. Most CSAs are smaller farms that cultivate a variety crops, and use organic growing practices. 

CSAs are a wonderful way to satisfy your desire for fresh, organic, locally grown produce, and a great way to support your local farmers. It’s also a great way to eat seasonally, and try out new foods and recipes. There are some challenges, however, that go along with being a part of a farm community. Weather, pests, and other factors outside the farmer’s control can mean lower yields or damaged crops, and that means a lighter share for the consumer. Not being able to predict quantities or varieties means that you might end up with a lot of something that you’re not sure how to use, or don’t like. 

This video, which features Gary Brever of Ploughshare Farm, Kate Stout of North Creek Community Farm, and Margaret Marshall of Featherstone Farm, does a great job of summarizing what you can expect as a member of a CSA:

You can also check out this post, which features an interview with Faatma Mehrmanesh, the Operation Coordinator at DUG’s DeLaney Community Farm. DeLaney Community Farm is Denver Urban Gardens’ community supported agriculture project in Aurora. DeLaney is different than other CSAs in that its operations are centered around a mission which includes providing healthy, locally produced food for people of all economic levels, including helping challenged populations improve their nutrition and their access to healthy food.

DeLaney’s Community Partner Share program provides fresh, organic produce to partner nonprofits like Project Angel Heart and The Gathering Place, and DeLaney’s WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) program allows WIC clients to work with staff for an hour in exchange for a freshly harvested share of produce. To keep costs low, DeLaney operates with a small staff, and relies on volunteers to assist in the day-to-day operations. To learn more about DeLaney Community Farm, please click here. To make a secure, online donation to the DeLaney Community Farm Partner Share Fund, please click here

The Power of Volunteerism

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A Connecting Generations mentor working with students at DUG’s Fairview Elementary Garden.Yesterday, people across Metro Denver celebrated Martin Luther King, Jr. Day by donating their time and energy to service projects to better their communities. One of those service projects was a community work day at a new Denver Urban Gardens community garden, Ebert School/Benedict Park Place Community Garden. This garden will serve students and teachers at Ebert School, residents at Denver Housing Authority’s Benedict Park Place, and volunteers and neighbors from the surrounding community. Channel 7 covered that event, and you can see the video here

Volunteering is a powerful and meaningful way to honor Martin Luther King, Jr. on the day of his remembrance. Any day of the year, volunteering is one of the most impactful ways to connect with your neighbors and improve your community. At Denver Urban Gardens, we rely on thousands of volunteers each year to in order to grow and manage our network of community gardens, education and outreach programs, and community farm. Community members who donate their time are the lifeblood of DUG gardens and programs, and we are grateful for their dedication. From one-day projects to longterm volunteer programs like Connecting Generations, Denver Urban Gardens has volunteer opportunities to suit a wide variety of interests. Click here to view current volunteer opportunities with Denver Urban Gardens, or see the list below for other volunteer opportunities throughout Metro Denver. 

Metro Volunteers

Volunteers of America

Metro CareRing

Project Angel Heart

The Gathering Place

Colorado AIDS Project

Rocky Mountain Children’s Law Center

2011 DeLaney Programs Internship

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We are looking for motivated seasonal interns with a passion for urban farming, community building, efficiency, and sustainability and a willingness to do hard work in all kinds of weather. Sustained energy is essential to the farm’s success. It is an opportunity to learn hands-on, but you will learn the most as someone who is committed to your own education as a learner.

The Farm Programs and Outreach Intern will work with the Farm Programs and Outreach Coordinator closely on activities that include, but are not limited to:

  • Design, implement, and attend WIC Taste-Testing Demonstrations & Nutrition Clinics
  • Maintain and help develop a recipe & nutrition database
  • Write a weekly blog, including seasonal recipes and updates of farm activities
  • Aid in weekly administration duties
  • Fundraising & grant research, writing, and implementation
  • Maintain shareholder “work log” book; track hours, update shareholders
  • Supervise youth, adult, and community workgroups and volunteers
  • Provide educational tours

Will work with the Operations Coordinator on activities that include, but are not limited to:

  • Seed or transplant, cultivate, and vegetables, herbs, flowers, and other crops using organic practices
  • Harvest, clean, divide and distribute produce to shareholders
  • Turn, build, and manage the compost system

Skills Needed:

  • Well organized, self-motivated, attention to detail and flexible
  • Ability to do outdoor, physically demanding work
  • High comfort level in diverse settings and diverse communities
  • Nutrition background preferred
  • Willingness to collaborate with DUG staff, Farm Staff, other interns, shareholders and community groups

Benefits:             

  • Training in organic agriculture, program administration, grant research, and community outreach
  • Working for an organization that benefits diverse communities
  • Possible credit towards course work
  • Free organic produce
  • Stipend
  • NO HOUSING OFFERED

Click here for more information, including how to apply. 

We need volunteers!

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Every year, Denver Urban Gardens distributes free vegetable seeds and transplants to over 5,000 residents-in-need. Operating this program means processing over 2,000 applications, and this year we are asking for volunteer support. Volunteer shifts are three hours each (we can be flexible if needed), and consist of entering seed and transplant orders from applications into an Excel spreadsheet in the Denver Urban Gardens office (34th and Blake Street, Denver). Volunteers should be comfortable with basic Microsoft Excel tasks. All computers are Macs. We can take four volunteers per shift. 

Available shifts:

  • Wednesday, 2/9, 9am – Noon
  • Wednesday, 2/9, 1pm – 4pm
  • Thursday, 2/10, 9am – Noon
  • Thursday, 2/10, 1pm – 4pm
  • Monday 2/14, 9am – Noon
  • Monday, 2/14, 1pm – 4pm
  • Tuesday, 2/15, 9am – Noon
  • Tuesday, 2/15, 1pm – 4pm
  • Wednesday, 2/16, 9am – Noon
  • Wednesday, 2/16, 1pm – 4pm
  • Thursday, 2/17, 9am – Noon
  • Friday, 2/18, 9am – Noon

If you are interested in this opportunity, please contact us with your name, and list the shift(s) you’re interested in. We can take up to four people per shift, so small groups are welcome. We will reply to confirm your shift within two business days. You can also call the DUG office at 303.292.9900 and ask for Abbie Harris or Jen Babbington. 

Click here to learn more about this program. 

2011 Web Internship

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Do you have a deep, burning desire to blog about urban agriculture? Do you love perusing news sites and combing through Google alerts? Do you have a passion for food justice that is best expressed through digital media and social networking sites?

Have we got an internship for you.

Denver Urban Gardens is looking for a Winter/Spring Web and Communications Intern. Primary responsibilities will be assisting with web content, including The Underground Blog, community garden pages, Facebook, and Twitter. 

Internship Description:

The Web and Communications Intern will be responsible for assisting with Denver Urban Gardens web content, including The Underground Blog, community garden pages, and regular web updates. Intern may also assist with the coordination of programs and special events.

Responsibilities include:

  • Assist with content for The Underground Blog and The Underground News, social media sites, and the DUG website.  
  • Assist with special events planning, including the Garden Leader Symposium.      
  • Assist with general office and outreach tasks.   

Skills Needed:

  • Willingness to help with a variety of programs and tasks.
  • Well organized and self-motivated.
  • Willingness to collaborate with staff, community gardeners, and other interns.
  • Comfortable in diverse settings and diverse communities.
  • No previous web editing experience is required, though applicants must be comfortable with Word, Excel, and email.
  • Spanish language skills a plus, but not required.
  • Blogging experience a plus, but not required. 

Benefits:

  • Helping to connect communities with garden resources and programs.
  • Broad experience in a grassroots nonprofit.   
  • Training in publications development and writing, managing online content, and public relations and outreach.      
  • Working for an organization that benefits Denver’s diverse communities.    
  • Flexible schedule (we’re happy to work around a job or school, and many tasks can be done from home) and a great work environment.

Timeframe for Internship:
February 16th, 2011 – May 18th, 2011 (Start and end times are flexible.)
10-15 hours per week. This internship is unpaid.

To Apply:
Application deadline is February 1st, 2010. Please send a short writing sample and resume to Denver Urban Gardens, 3377 Blake St, Suite 113, Denver, CO 80205 or email to dirt@dug.org with “Web and Communications Internship” as the subject line. For more information, please call or email the DUG office and ask for Abbie Rae Harris.

 

2011 Farm Internships

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We are now accepting applications for 2011 Farm Internships. 

We are looking for motivated seasonal interns with a passion for urban farming, community building, efficiency, and sustainability and a willingness to do hard work in all kinds of weather. Sustained energy and a love of physical labor are essential to the farm’s success. We look for applicants eager to learn about plants and their production. It is an opportunity to learn hands-on, but you will learn the most as someone who is committed to your own education as a learner.

Will work with the Operations Coordinator on activities that include, but are not limited to:

  • Seed or transplant, cultivate, and vegetables, herbs, flowers, and other crops using organic practices
  • Harvest, clean, divide and distribute produce to shareholders
  • Supervise youth, adult, and community workgroups and volunteers
  • Provide educational tours
  • Construct and maintain irrigation systems
  • Work on improving weed and pest control
  • Operation of Farm Stand
  • Competently perform farm operations by the end of the season
  • Maintain enthusiasm about the work at the DeLaney Community Farm 

Skills Needed:

  • Ability to do outdoor, repetitive, sometimes boring, physically demanding work
  • Self-motivation, flexibility, creativity, attention to detail, and an awareness of personal and farm safety
  • Some knowledge of organic farming a plus, but not necessary with a good attitude and strong work ethic
  • Willingness to collaborate with DUG staff, farm staff, other interns, shareholders and community groups
  • High comfort level in diverse settings and diverse communities

Benefits:

  • Organic agriculture training and education
  • Working for an organization that benefits diverse communities
  • Free organic produce
  • Possibility of stipend
  • No housing offered

For more information, including hours and how to apply, please click here. 

The Best Pumpkin Muffins

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From Vegan with a Vengeance By Isa Chandra Moskowitz
Reprinted with permission

Warm pumpkin muffins: heaven on earth. Ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground or freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 cup pureed pumpkin (Fresh or from a can; don’t use pie mix)
  • 1/2 cup soy milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons molasses

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400°F. Lightly grease a twelve-muffin tin.

Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and spices. In a separate bowl, whisk together pumpkin, soy milk, oil, and molasses. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix.

Fill the muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, until a toothpick or knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

Variations:

Fold in a cup of either chopped fresh cranberries or chopped walnuts, or a mixture of the two. 
Abbie’s note: This is my very favorite cold weather recipe. For chocolatey pumpkin bliss, fold in a half cup of chocolate chips.

You can see more recipes from Isa over at Post Punk Kitchen. Be sure to check out her newest cookbook, Appetite for Reduction. 

Gifts That Give!

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Sets include 12 cards and envelopes, and are tied with raffia and a simple tag in order to minimize waste.Denver Urban Gardens note cards are now available online! Each set contains 12 note cards, each of which features a unique story and drawing from student gardeners at Denver Urban Gardens’ Fairview Elementary School Community Garden. Cards are blank on the inside. The proceeds of these note cards help support DUG’s school garden and nutrition education programs, and a portion of your contribution is tax deductible.

These note cards make great gifts for any time of year. Click here to order yours!