Growing Home’s Chicago job training program includes agriculture and horticulture training, Job Readiness training, comprehensive referral services, job search assistance and placement, and retention services. Production Associates are paid for their time in work and in class. The program is based on a transitional jobs model, which emphasizes setting career goals and making important life changes. If you would like to hire a graduate of our program please contact our Employment Specialist, Brad Hirn.
Production Associates play an important role in Growing Home’s organic agriculture social enterprise. Individuals receive on-the-job training in a professional and supportive environment to learn as they go. Generally, work involves planting, weeding, harvesting, processing, preparing CSA membership shares, building and grounds maintenance, staffing farmers’ markets and farm stands, and assisting with tours and special events. Work sites include the Wood Street Urban Farm and Honore Street Farm both in Englewood, the Su Casa Market Garden in Back of the Yards, the Les Brown Memorial Farm in Marseilles, the Green City Market in Lincoln Park, as well as, the Wood Street Urban Farm Stand in Englewood.
When not in the field, Production Associates attend daily classes geared towards motivating and preparing them for employment after Growing Home. Growing Home’s Employment Training staff design and teach the
curriculum, taking into account employer feedback, graduates’ experiences at their jobs, and the real-world conditions of Chicago’s labor market. Production Associates set and achieve weekly goals aimed at preparing
them to obtain and retain permanent & sustainable employment, including:
- New or restored driver’s licenses
- GED/accredited HS diploma instruction and testing
- Criminal background repair
- Childcare and transportation management
- ServSafe Manager certification
Classes train Production Associates to identify transferrable job skills in the workplace, effectively communicate in job interviews, problem-solve with an eye towards the employer’s perspective, and adapt to the sense of urgency expected at deadline-driven businesses.
Fred Daniels, 2010 job training graduate is now a full time staff member at Growing Home. Mr. Daniels spoke with ABClocal about his experience at Growing Home.
If you are interested in becoming a Growing Home Production Associate, please read the Apply for Job Training page.