Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community

Scottsdale, Arizona, United States

Community Garden Technician

Posted over 1 month ago

Job Description


Definition : Under general supervision of the Community Garden Coordinator, learns, practices and shares indigenous and modern farming techniques unique to the O'odham and Piipaash cultures. Assists the Community Garden Coordinator in promoting awareness of the cultural effects on farming and demonstrates a willingness to become educated about the coordination of various farming techniques. Performs general laborer duties pertaining to Community gardening and farming but also serves as a backup to the Community Garden Coordinator when necessary and assigned. This job class is treated as FLSA Non-Exempt.

Distinguishing Features: The Community Garden Technician is distinguished from the Community Garden Coordinator by an emphasis on the general labor required for indigenous and modern farming projects. The Technician also assists the Community Garden Coordinator in giving presentations and providing educational opportunities for others to learn primarily about the indigenous and traditional farming methods. Assists the Community Garden Coordinator with temporary worker workflow as assigned.

Essential Functions : Essential functions may vary among positions and may include the following tasks and other characteristics. This list of tasks is ILLUSTRATIVE ONLY and is not intended to be comprehensive list of tasks performed by all positions in this classification.

Examples of Tasks

1. Community Gardening : Possesses the willingness and ability to learn, retain and share SRPMIC indigenous and modern farming techniques with others.
  • Demonstrates a willingness to learn about the coordination of various farming techniques.
  • Instills an acute awareness of the cultural effects on farming.
  • Works with the Community Garden Coordinator by interacting with other Native American communities including Arizona tribes and other tribes that have proficient and/or traditional, indigenous and holistic gardening techniques in place.
  • Shows the willingness to learn basic landscape design.
  • Interfaces with other Tribal Government departments including, but not limited to, the Environmental Protection and Natural Resources (EPNR) Division of Community Development Department (CDD).
  • Collects seed and cuttings from desert and riparian flora for propagation of new plants in the garden.
  • Assists with the future development of a greenhouse and hydroponic growing systems.
  • Helps gather natural materials for traditional uses.
  • Demonstrates a general awareness and understanding of the Sonoran environment.

2. Indigenous Farming Techniques : Works on tribal land to learn, practice, promote and share the use of traditional Native American farming techniques, particularly those of the O'odham and Piipaash cultures.
  • Focuses on chemical-free, holistic, Native American and other indigenous tribal farming practices including, but not limited to, Permaculture design.
  • Outreaches to the Community by giving presentations and speaking to groups about the traditional related aspects of indigenous farming. This includes interaction with Community Members, Elders, students, Native American tribes and other Indigenous people and groups from around the world.
  • Learns about gathering wild seed and propagation techniques of desert and riparian plants.
  • Practices "Accumulated Biomass Recycling" techniques, or the ability to use everything that is grown for a useful purpose including composting and mulching.
  • Helps harvest the annual wild foods and includes learning when, where and how to harvest.
  • Learns to fabricate traditional farming tools including 1) Digging Sticks made of ironwood, 2) Dibbles (shovels), 3) Planting Sticks (different sizes to plant seeds), and 4) Ditch Cleaners/machetes.

3. Modern Farming Techniques : Demonstrates a working knowledge of modern farming practices, genetically modified foods, Bio-Farming and an overall knowledge of non-traditional foods and farming techniques.
  • Understands the risks involved with genetically modified foods, "Bio-Pharming" (vegetable pharmaceuticals).
  • Gains an appreciation for the differences between indigenous farming versus non-traditional foods and farming techniques.
  • Gains knowledge of the farming planting, growing and harvesting seasons.
  • Learns to supplement the regular growing season with non-traditional foods along with the three traditional varieties that grow in the winter.

4. General Farming : Learns about the seasonal differences in temperatures and their effect on farming.
  • Demonstrates energy saving techniques in both indigenous and modern farming efforts.
  • Abides by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) laws and regulations including chemical and chemical application statutes. Willing and able to pass an Herbicide Applicator license test.

5. Miscellaneous: Performs other job related duties as assigned by the Community Garden Coordinator or Cultural Preservation Manager.

Knowledge, Skills, Abilities and Other Characteristics:
  • Knowledge of the history, culture, laws, customs and traditions of the SRPMIC.
  • Knowledge of general farming and gardening techniques and practices.
  • Knowledge of native plants versus noxious weeds or non-native species.
  • Knowledge of the planting, growing and harvesting practices.
  • Knowledge of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) laws and regulations including chemical and chemical application statutes.

  • Skill giving presentations about Community gardening, traditional indigenous and modern farming activities.
  • Skill working with adobe material for traditional applications.
  • Skill harvesting the annual wild foods.
  • Skill fabricating and using traditional farming tools including Digging Sticks, Dibbles, Planting Sticks and Ditch Cleaners.

  • Ability to perform manual farming and gardening labor.
  • Ability to work with youth groups, Elders and the WIA program participants.
  • Ability to learn basic landscape design.
  • Ability to safely use indigenous and modern farming tools including hoes, shovels, tractors and a large capacity vehicle with trailer.
  • Ability to bend, kneel and stoop for extended periods.
  • Ability to work long hours alone.
  • Ability to lift and carry 50 lbs.

Minimum Qualifications

  • Education: Graduation from High School or a GED equivalent.
  • For enrolled Community Members without a GED, must obtain a GED within the probationary period. Requires participation in the HR GED Program and successful completion of the Arizona state certified exam in order to continue employment with SRPMIC.
  • Experience: An eager willingness to learn, retain, practice and share indigenous and modern farming methods is required.
  • Any combination of indigenous or modern farming experience is preferred.
  • Safe driving experience is required but a Commercial Drivers' License (CDL) is not required.

  • Equivalency: Any equivalent combination of education and/or experience that would allow the candidate to satisfactorily perform the duties of this position, will be considered.

  • Underfill Eligibility: An enrolled Community Member whom closely qualifies for the minimum qualifications for a position may be considered for employment under SRPMIC Policy 2-19, Underfill.

Special Requirements

  • May be required to work beyond normal business hours including nights, weekends and holidays.
  • May be required to work in extreme weather conditions including heat and cold.
  • Required to work with indigenous and modern farm tools.
  • May be required to stand, kneel and stoop for extended periods.

Prior to hire as an employee, applicants will be subject to drug and alcohol testing. Will be required to pass a pre-employment background/fingerprint check.

"SRPMIC is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer" Preference will be given to a qualified : Community Member Veteran, Community Member, Spouse of Community Member, qualified Native American, and then other qualified candidate.

In order to obtain preference, the following is required: 1) Qualified Community Member Veteran (DD-214) will be required at the time of application submission 2) Qualified Community Member (must provide Tribal I.D at time of application submission),3) Spouse of a Community Member (Marriage License/certificate and spouse Tribal ID or CIB is required at time of application submission), and 4) Native American (Tribal ID or CIB required at time of application submission).

Documents may be submitted by one of the following methods:

1) attach to application

2) fax (480) 362-5860

3) mail or hand deliver to Human Resources.

Documentation must be received by position closing date.

The IHS/BIA Form-4432 is not accepted .

Your Tribal ID/CIB must be submitted to HR-Recruitment-Two Waters.

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