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Hawthorne Valley Farm Seeks Summer Camp Staff - Ghent, NY

Join our team for the summer on a 400 acre Biodynamic-organic farm situated in the Berkshire Taconic foothills, just east of the Hudson River Valley in Upstate New York. Summer at Hawthorne Valley Farm Camp helps children build a reverence for life and community awareness through living, playing and working together on an active farm. Through these experiences, children stretch boundaries and realize new capacities within themselves.

We offer two residential programs during the season, a House Camp experience for ages 8 through 11 and a Field Camp experience for ages 12 to 15. The House Campers live in the main farmhouse. The Field Campers live in cabins in the woodland section of the farm. While the camp strives to complement the educational approach of Waldorf schools, campers are accepted from all backgrounds.

House Camp Counselors work with small groups of 7 – 9 campers, ages 8 to 11, building positive group interactions as the campers participate in hands-on nature and farm experiences. Some activities are feeding animals, farm chores, swimming, gardening, singing, horseback riding, and sharing family style vegetarian meals. Lifeguard certification is a plus.

Specialty Counselors lead activities with small groups of children such as cooperative games, archery, horseback riding, arts and crafts. Experience or knowledge in these fields is helpful.

The Field Camp is geared to ages 12 to 15. The campers work for part of the day on the farm alongside professional staff in the farm, retail store, bakery, dairy plant and camp kitchen. In the afternoon there is plenty of time for traditional camp activities. There is also an off-campus overnight trip and culture excursions. The campers and counselors live in cabins or platform tents in a wooded area on the farm.

Field Camp Assistant Director is responsible for organizing and running all the operations of the field camp along with the Field Camp Director. This position creates daily and weekly schedule of activities and off-site outings/events for camp. The Assistant Director is responsible for the social, emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being of 15 campers and 4 other counselors. Strong leadership, supervising and communication skills are required. Qualifications include, experience working with teenagers in an outdoor setting (camp and farm), working as a team player, while being an effective supervisor, and being able to address and resolve difficult issues (behavioral/sleeping habits/illness) of campers and staff. Often, the Assistant Director will need to talk with parents of the campers in order to resolve some issues. Camping and hiking skills are also required for this position. Lifeguard certification is a plus. This position can start as early as March 2011.

Field Camp Counselors work under the leadership of the Field Camp Assistant Director. They are responsible for guiding the campers through the various departments of the farm and traditional camp activities such as swimming, art & crafts, hikes, off-site camping trips, attending cultural events, campfires, etc. The Counselors are responsible for helping the campers form a tight-knit community where every one learns to meet the challenges and reap the reward of living and working together. Previous experience working with teenagers, camping and communication skills are all required for this position. Lifeguard certification is a plus.

Assistant Cooks work with the Dining Hall Manager to prepare all vegetarian meals for at least 75 campers and staff. Experience in cooking for a large number of people using whole grains and vegetables is required. Since campers are periodically in the kitchen, the assistant cooks need to be a positive influence on children.

QUALIFICATIONS FOR ALL SUMMER POSITIONS:

Applicants with experience working with children, an interest in gardening/farming/camping, the ability to work well with others, enthusiasm and a love for children, the outdoors and animals should apply. Camping, hiking, music, orienteering, lifeguarding experience, or storytelling skills are a plus.

WORK DATES: House Camp Counselors, Specialty Counselors and Assistant Cooks: June 26 to August 14. Field Camp Counselors: June 19 – August 14. The Field Camp Assistant Director position can start as early as March.

LOCATION: We are located in the Berkshire/Taconic foothills in upstate rural New York, 2 ½ hours north of New York City, along the Hudson River.

HOW TO APPLY: Send your resume with a cover letter describing your interest in our program and the names and phone numbers of three working references, preferably employers who have seen you working with children. We are in the process of reviewing applications now.

COMPENSATION: House Camp and specialty counselors receive $1,600 per season plus room and Dining Hall meals (all vegetarian, organic meals). Field Camp Counselors with extensive previous experience receive $1,850 per season (plus room and board). Salary for the Field Camp Assistant Director is $2650 during the camp season, plus room and board. Field Camp Assistant Director will receive additional compensation during the time prior to camp at the rate of $450 per month. Assistant Cook positions have a salary range, based on experience and number of hours worked, starting at $1,600 for season, plus room board. Lifeguard certification is a plus; if you are hired as a lifeguard, the above rate will be increased by $200.

Visit www.vspcamp.com for more information and feel free to call us at (518) 672-4790.

Send Resume to: Helen Enright, Director, Hawthorne Valley Farm, Main House, 327 Route 21C, Ghent, NY, 12075 Fax: (518) 672-7608, e-mail vsp@taconic.net