Opportunities at Sustain Ontario

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Sustain Ontario is seeking volunteers for our network meeting on October 13, 2016!

We’re looking for energetic individuals who want to grow their professional portfolio and network by dedicating their time and creativity to Cultivating Our Capacity:  Municipal Regional Food Policy Network Meeting.

This year the private network event is happening at Ryerson University in Toronto and will include workshops on Healthy Food and Farming.  It is an intensive one-day event that brings together food policy advocates, government staff, not-for-profit organizations, and small scale producers from across the province to learn and strategize for a better food and farming system in Ontario.

What we are looking for:

  • Volunteer note-takers, photographers, and tech support.
  • Must be available for the full day on October 13th from 8am – 5pm
  • Able to participate in orientation training on October 5th in the afternoon or early evening
  • Interest in one of the following areas of the food and farming sector: food waste, local food procurement, urban agriculture/community gardens, evaluating food initiatives, municipal food policy, or farmland preservation.
  • Able to assist with set up and clean up from the event


  • Notetakers: will be seated with a particular table for the breakout sessions and take notes of the discussion
  • Photographers: will be given a photo script and take photos of the event
  • Tech Support: will provide support to presenters and Sustain staff with audio/video equipment, sound checks, setting up PowerPoint presentations, and generally insuring smooth IT function throughout the event.

Volunteers’ Rewards:

  • The chance to network with a variety of stakeholders across the food and farming system
  • The opportunity to learn about 6 different topics in the food system and see what others are doing across the province

Respond by September 27 at 12 noon:

If you are interested in volunteering please send your full name and contact information along with responses to the following questions in an email to: opportunities@sustainontario.ca

  1. Why are you interested in volunteering with Sustain Ontario?
  2. What experience or interest do you have related to food and farming in Ontario?
  3. Out of our 6 focus areas which one or two interest you the most? (food waste, local food procurement, urban agriculture/community gardens, evaluating food initiatives, municipal food policy, or farmland preservation)
  4. Are you available for both?
      • Volunteer Orientation (required) – Wednesday, October 5, 2016 approximately 2 hours late afternoon or early evening (Please indicate your preferred time for orientation).
      • Day of Event – 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 pm Thursday October 13, 2016


Ongoing Intern Roles & Opportunities

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Are you a food policy fan?

Do you get excited about building healthy food and farming systems in Ontario?

Are you looking for an internship that will put you on the food map in Ontario?

Look no further!

Sustain Ontario has ongoing recruitment of interns and volunteers for projects and events.

We’re looking for talented, energetic individuals who want to grow their professional portfolios and networks by dedicating their time and creativity to research, design, communications and member services.  You’ll fit right in if you are a self-starter who manages time well and can work both independently as well as collaboratively.

We’ll support you in building your skills and sharing your knowledge with a great practical and meaningful work experience that contributes to healthy, equitable, ecologically resilient and financially viable food and farming systems in Ontario.

Preference is given to applicants who can work from our Toronto office though there are some opportunities for off-site activities.

Intern Roles

Internships are unpaid and must be connected to credit arranged by the intern through her/his college or university.

Hours: part-time, 10 hours a week with dedicated weekly office hours or equivalent as arranged with intern supervisor

Here are some some areas where student interns can make an impact:


Research Assistant

Our Municipal Regional Food Policy Network provides resources and expertise for food policy groups across the province. We are looking for a student to assist with research which could include survey and review of policy documents, academic literature, and food sector resources. The work would contribute to Sustain Ontario’s ongoing policy and advocacy efforts as well as to development of a food and farming sector online resource sharing library.

Key Qualities and Skills for Research

  • Research experience with knowledge of range of primary and secondary sources
  • Strong writing skills with ability to synthesize and communicate complex information effectively
  • Awareness of and interest in food and farming systems in Ontario
  • Access to a laptop computer an asset


Design Assistant

Communications are central to Sustain Ontario’s work with its members and the wider community.  We are looking for a student with creative flair, solid design skills, and ability to translate complex data into visually compelling communications.  Work may include design and production of member brochure, member recruitment tool, collateral materials, website face lift, and development of promo material for upcoming events.

Key Qualities and Skills for Design

  • Strong skills with ability to translate complex information into effective, visual formats
  • Awareness of and interest in food and farming systems in Ontario
  • Experience with Adobe InDesign (required), WordPress, Google Apps, MailChimp, Campaign Monitor
  • Access to a laptop computer an asset


Government Relations Assistant

Sustain Ontario is a cross-sectoral alliance that promotes healthy food and farming.  A major way we do that is through effective government relations that help our Alliance turn policy ideas into concrete action through research, writing, strategy development and effective advocacy. We need a political savvy student with knowledge of policy processes and government structures to help us strengthen government relations.

Key Qualities and Skills for Government relations

  • Education or experience in Political Science, Public Administration or other related fields
  • Passion for food and farming policy with interest in systems-level change
  • Interest in or knowledge of provincial/municipal government structures and procedures
  • Can synthesize and communicate complex information in organized and meaningful way
  • Comfortable making professional and timely calls and writing emails to political staff
  • Access to a laptop computer is an asset


Membership Services Assistant

Sustain Ontario exists to support its members with knowledge-sharing, coordination, policy and advocacy work, and communications.  We are looking for a student keen on membership  and member services to help us serve existing members and to reach out to new members.  Work may include support for Sustain Ontario’s membership outreach, promotion of member activities through blog posts and social media, and member recruitment.

Key Qualities and Skills for Membership Support

  • Knowledge and skill with membership structures, policies and services
  • Strong writing, communications and marketing skills
  • Personable and outgoing
  • Familiarity with accounting systems and/or membership database systems an asset
  • Awareness of and interest in food and farming systems in Ontario
  • Access to a laptop computer an asset

Internship applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.  If you are interested, please send your cover letter and resume with “Intern” in the subject line to Sustain Ontario:  opportunities@sustainontario.ca

Volunteer Roles

For those who prefer, volunteering is a great way to support Sustain Ontario. Volunteers play an important role and are needed on a rolling basis for special projects such as community event and campaign support, writing for our popular blog and newsletter, or research support.  Ideal candidates have passion for food and farming and are able to commit time during regular business hours and/or weekend and evening hours for events for at least 10 weeks.  

Those interested in volunteering, please send e-mail with “Volunteer” in subject line along with resume to:  opportunities@sustainontario.ca

Please note that volunteers are offered transit tokens for all travel to and from the office.

Skills & Qualities

We’re excited to hear from enthusiastic individuals that demonstrate a mix of these skills and qualities:

  • Highly motivated self-starter who works well both independently and collaboratively
  • Takes initiative in pursuing skill-building and knowledge-sharing opportunities
  • Has an awareness and interest in a variety of initiatives and communities working on food and farming systems in Ontario
  • Communicates in a professional and timely manner in both verbal and written forms, and for a variety of audiences
  • Can synthesize and communicate complex information in an organized and meaningful way
  • Manages time effectively, follows through on tasks, and shows a spirit of adaptability when there are changes in priorities
  • Experience with WordPress, Google Apps, Campaign Monitor, social media, and/or Adobe Creative Suite (or the enthusiasm to learn!)
  • Access to a laptop computer (not necessary, but an asset!)