Quail Springs Service Learning Internship

Quail SpringsFarm and Garden, Permaculture 3 Comments

goats and dogs on walk


Overview: The internship offers extensive education about the day-to-day operations of a full-time functioning Permaculture farm and education center, and is geared specifically for those deeply interested in and drawn to work long-term with holistic, integrated food producing animal systems in a community setting, with an educational focus.  This opportunity offers broad practical experience to complement a theoretical knowledge base.

Focus of Internship: The internship is broad in nature and will include elements of each aspect of the farm, from the mundane to the technical. Daily farm activities can include permaculture gardening, farming and earthworks, seed saving, plant propagation, livestock care, milking, cheese making, yogurt, butchering (not required), bread making, food preparation, preserving the harvest, general farm tasks, community care & hearth tending, and non-profit administration.  We also offer special segments covering a range of areas from natural building and watershed stewardship to carving, wild tending, working with natural fibers, beekeeping, cooking in the earthen ovens, and more.   By mentoring with experienced stewards on the farm, you should gain a deep understanding of sustainable community living. You may also be engaged in deeper research on topics pertinent to our systems and design small projects meant to move the farm forward towards greater health and integration. The service learning time commitment is for 20-30 hours per week.  The Intern coordinator works with Interns to match your area or areas of interest with projects on the farm.

Our goal on the farm is to provide the daily food throughout the year for staff, students and visitors to Quail Springs Farm, as well as for our food-giving animals.  The farm currently has a 12 goat herd with 7 milking does, a mixed poultry flock of 117 chickens and ducks including approximately 85 laying hens, 7 roosters, and 25 dual purpose poults, 6 rabbits for meat and hides (breeding stock), a thriving bee colony kept with the top bar hive method, 2 farm cats, 2 predator control dogs (Great Pyrenees), and a small school of goldfish in the current Aquaponics system trial, being expanded fall of 2015.

What is needed from Interns: A desire to learn and to be of service, adaptability, mindfulness, desire to live & work mostly in the outdoors, a non-judgmental approach, a sense of humor, self-care, ability to listen and to speak from the heart, a sense of wonder.   You should also be able to handle hard physical labor and rising early in the mornings, manage independent study time and be willing to engage in the mundane chores, such as cleaning, among other things. You will also have in-class and one-on-one learning times, as outlined in your schedule.

What is provided to Interns:  Hands-on skill building, mentoring, meaningful work, camping space (with your own gear), nourishing food, hundreds of acres of beautiful wilderness, a lively community atmosphere of all ages, and what many interns have deemed a treasured life-changing experience.

INTERNSHIP LOCATION: Farm based in Cuyama Valley, California.


Support Quail Springs’ Events or Take a Course:  Quail Springs hosts enjoyable and informative public and private events that interns have the option to support. Interns are also invited to take educational courses offered at Quail Springs as registered participants at a 30% discount. For the full Quail Springs programs calendar, visit www.quailsprings.org.

Fees for internship: The basic $650-750/month sliding scale fee covers food, camping, facility use, and staff mentoring.  Payment can be made online, by check or cash, and is due by the first intern meeting of each month.  A $150 non-refundable deposit is required to secure your space in the program. We offer a $300 discount if the full session is paid in advance (for a total of $3,275 – $3,825 for the full session).  Sessions can be up to 6 months in length, plus 1 or 2 weeks (depending on the session), which are included without an additional fee.  All fees are non-refundable upon payment and are not pro-rated.  If something comes up and an intern cannot complete the program, payment may be applied to a future session.

Contact us to express interest in future internship



Comments 3

  1. I was just reading about your internship. This sounds like something I might be interested in. I have been checking out your website for over a year and like the programs offered. I am 68 years young and in very good health and work very well with the younger folks both physically and mentally. I have been working in a permaculture lifestyle and have done projects on my own so I do have some experience. Would like to work more with others with same interest and help teach others in this important and natural lifestyle. Thank you for your needed work in these times. Douglas

  2. I agree this sounds spectacular! I’d love to be part of it in Fall/Winter of 2016/2017. When is the next opportunity to start?

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