NON-EXEMPT, FULL TIME
Schedule: The schedule for this position will be 40 hours/week and daily schedule varies slightly throughout the year. It will require working approximately 1 Saturday (or Sunday) each month during the gleaning season (June thru October), traveling to Barre 1-2 times a month for meetings, occasional weekday evening work throughout the year, and frequent travel to Bennington and other parts of Southern Vermont occasional weekday to implement cooking demos at food shelves.
This position is primarily responsible for implementing Vermont Foodbank (VFB) programs and initiatives related to fresh food, including the Gleaning Program and Pick for Your Neighbor (PFYN) program, which increase the availability of local fresh produce by mobilizing volunteers to harvest produce from farms and orchards and VT Fresh which includes educating VFB network partners and food shelf visitor in improved utilization of fresh foods. Primary responsibilities involve ensuring a steady flow of fresh food donations through the Vermont Foodbank’s Gleaning and PFYN programs and conducting cooking demonstrations and nutrition education activities at partnering food shelves. The Gleaning and Community Outreach Coordinator (G&COC) will develop new relationships and cultivate existing ones with local farms, Network Partners, volunteers, and other organizations that support the Vermont Foodbank’s Gleaning and VT Fresh work. G&COC will coordinate gleans, including communicating with farmers, volunteers, and warehouse personnel around scheduling, and also manage the activities in the field. Organization promotion and Network Partner outreach & visits will be a part of this position. G&COC will assist with the integration of fresh produce within Vermont Foodbank facilities, specifically the Brattleboro Branch. G&COC will maintain proper tracking and reporting procedures as is specific to the Gleaning and PFYN Programs and VT Fresh program, Foodbank receiving and distribution, and volunteer involvement. Position will require frequent instate travel and occasional weekends and evenings. This is a very physical position that involves frequent lifting, bending and driving a company pick-up truck, a forklift, and occasionally a small box truck.
The primary objective is to regionally ensure Vermont’s surplus farm produce is rescued by mobilizing community members and overseeing distribution to Network Partner agencies through direct and statewide distribution.
Essential Functions and Responsibilities:
- Works cooperatively and be able to communicate with staff and volunteers to support the mission of the Foodbank to meet and sustain Foodbank goals.
- Positively contribute to an organizational culture of safe and secure food handling, warehousing and distribution.
- The Foodbank relies on volunteers every day to fulfill our mission. All Foodbank employees must support our culture of philanthropy by treating every volunteer with appreciation and respect.
- In coordination with the program director, research, recruit and cultivate new fresh food donors/farms/orchards in applicable region of Vermont.
- Organize volunteer gleaners and oversee gleaning regionally.
- Maintain relationships with agricultural food donors through periodic visits, phone calls, email and written communication.
- Coordinate, design and implement cooking demonstrations and taste tests at partnering food shelves.
- Work collaboratively with food shelf partners to implement VT Fresh goals around improving the food/nutrition environment of the food shelf through food displays, storage, point of decision promotions and signage.
- Recruit volunteers, administer proper documentation, coordinate necessary orientation, track volunteer hours, and organize volunteer appreciation activities and events.
- Work closely with Operations Department to provide input and suggestions on the most efficient distribution of gleaned produce.
- Work closely with Network Partners, Network Relations Manager, and Chief Community Impact Officer assisting with outreach efforts and annual visits in counties in the southern region of the state.
- Work closely with the director of community health and fresh food initiatives, farmers, and Operations staff in Barre, Wolcott and Brattleboro to ensure steady flow of farm food donations to Vermont Foodbank’s Brattleboro Regional Distribution Center.
- Ensure proper recording, timely reporting and completion of evaluation of programs.
- Maintain regular contact with the program director and submit quarterly narrative reports and stats on activities related to food donor contacts, distribution, procurement efforts, and volunteer involvement.
- Prepare periodic progress summaries when requested by the program director.
- Stay current on food trends and safety issues affecting the movement and handling of food.
- Cultivate relationships with schools and organizations in Southern Vermont, which could be a source of volunteers, program support and partnership.
- Engage in community events, as an opportunity for networking, volunteer recruiting, and promotion.
- Act as a representative of the Vermont Foodbank. Be able to answer questions about the organization, promote and be an advocate for the work we are doing.
- Coordinate and manage a regular schedule of food rescue, both the gleaning/harvesting and pickup of produce on regional farms. Communicate with the Operations Department around farm pick-ups.
- G&COC will work collaboratively with the VT Fresh Coordinator to help meet the fresh food needs of VT Fresh and so that program activities are being implemented as planned.
Education and/or Experience:
- Knowledge of farming practices and produce handling a must.
- Experience with food safety, cooking and nutrition education.
- Understanding of warehouse and inventory control systems and practices.
- Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent relevant experience in communications, marketing, graphic design, social media or related field
- Experience using social media professionally, with experience creating content
Other Skills and Abilities:
- Ability to communicate effectively with diverse groups of people, work in partnership with other staff and juggle many projects while meeting deadlines.
- Strong interpersonal skills to successfully communicate with donors, co-workers, volunteers, and the general public.
- The individual must be self-motivated and committed to being part of a team and leading a team.
- The individual must understand and agree with the vision and mission of the Vermont Foodbank and be committed to providing services to people facing situations of hunger and poverty.
- Some nights and weekends required.
- Must be able to lift 40-60 pounds.
- Ability to drive pickup trucks and/or small box trucks.
- During the gleaning season, 1 Saturdays or Sunday is required work days each month.
- Excellent communication, marketing, writing, phone and public relations skills.
- Excellent record-keeping, computer and data entry skills.
- A valid Vermont Driver’s License.
- 3-year motor vehicle report (MVR) showing a clean driving record.
- ServSafe certification or willing to obtain.
Please submit application on-line at: https://www.vtfoodbank.org/employment; be sure to include a cover letter & resume, attention: Human Resources Department. The Vermont Foodbank is an EEO.