Heritage Garden Coordinator

6 May – 26 August

16 weeks

$14.50 an hour

The Terrace and District Museum Society is seeking a Heritage Garden Coordinator for a sixteen-week summer position at Heritage Park Museum in Terrace, British Columbia. The Heritage Garden Coordinator will oversee educational programming, maintenance, expansion, and interpretation in Heritage Park Museum’s Organic Heritage Garden. The wage is $14.50 an hour. The position begins on 6 May and ends on 26 August.

Operated by the not-for-profit Terrace and District Museum Society, Heritage Park Museum is a community museum and heritage site consisting of authentic log buildings set up with displays showcasing various aspects of local history. Heritage Park Museum has a well-established heritage garden featuring heirloom plants from the gardens of local settlers and First Nations families.

Terrace is located in Northwestern British Columbia, and is a vibrant community of approximately 12,000 people, with a regional population of approximately 18,000. We are located south of the Nass Valley, east of Prince Rupert, and north of Kitimat. We are two hours by air from Vancouver, and seven hours by driving from Prince George. Terrace is located in the traditional territory of the Kitselas and Kitsumkalum First Nations and is consequently rich in culture and history. The surrounding mountains, lakes, and rivers provide infinite opportunities for hiking, biking, fishing, and swimming. Nearby cultural attractions include the Kitselas Canyon National Historic Site (15 km east of Terrace) and the Nisga’a Museum in Laxgalts’ap (approximately two hours’ drive north of Terrace). See www.visitterrace.com for further information. Alternatively, visit the local newspaper’s website to see the issues and events concerning Terrace residents at www.terracestandard.com.

Tasks and Responsibilities:

The Heritage Garden Coordinator will oversee educational programming, maintenance, expansion, and interpretation in Heritage Park Museum’s Organic Heritage Garden, which features local heirloom plants from the gardens of local settlers and First Nations families. The Coordinator will maintain, research, and expand the garden. This includes networking with elders, seniors, and families with well-established gardens, and promotion of the garden through the local media.

By overseeing maintenance and expansion, the Coordinator will ensure the rejuvenation of the garden for the community. By conducting proper identification and contributing to our master care plan, the Coordinator will also ensure the long-term sustainability of the Organic Heritage Garden for Heritage Park Museum. The Coordinator will grow heritage fruits and vegetables and distribute them to families in our summer programs.

Through partnerships with community groups such as the Ksan House Society, Kermode Friendship Society, the Terrace Regional Historical Society, Skeena Diversity Society, and the City of Terrace, the Garden Coordinator will promote local food production and community sustainability. The Heritage Garden Coordinator would research, develop, and interpret the Organic Heritage Garden at Heritage Park Museum.

The Coordinator would be responsible for giving instructional garden and site tours to highlight the area’s ecological heritage. Tour participants will include school groups, senior’s associations and bus tours, First Nations elders and youth, and newcomers to the area. To support the significance of such tours, s/he would oversee the ongoing maintenance of the garden, ensure aluminum flashing between plants is intact, double-check signage, and enter all existing records into our new digital database.

The Heritage Garden Coordinator would then conduct further research to expand our institutional knowledge of the provenance and biological profiles of the plants in the garden. To complement the existing plants, the Garden Coordinator would identify elders, seniors, and families with well-established gardens with the help of the media, senior’s associations, gardening organisations, Eric Lennert, and Dr. Norma Kerby, local plant and conservation expert. The Coordinator would network with these groups to acquire cuttings and samples of plants with established local lineage, and then enter the plants into our garden and database.

The Coordinator will maintain the heritage apple trees on the property, coordinating a list of low-income families to distribute the apples to when they are ripe. S/he will also grow heirloom vegetables, sharing them with children, families, and seniors who attend our summer programs. This will encourage local eating and contribute to local food security.

In addition to maintaining, researching, and expanding the Organic Heritage Garden, the Heritage Garden Coordinator will highlight the garden in the community by writing an article for the local newspaper and giving interviews on local radio and television. The Coordinator will develop innovative ways to incorporate the garden in special events at the museum, and will organise both a gardening workshop for children and an evening lecture for adults.

At the end of his/her work term, the Heritage Garden Coordinator will update a chronological care plan. The care plan, which is enshrined in our shared Google Calendar, will send automated reminders about fertilization, weeding, trimming, compost, and organic pest control.

Candidate Profile:

The ideal candidate will be enthusiastic about gardening, museums, and/or community programming. Experience is not necessary but may be an asset. Students of biology, environmental science, history, or geography will be given priority, although anyone can apply. The skills and experience developed include conservation biology, a combination of archival and biological identification and cataloguing, accompanying historical interpretation, and public/educational programming. This profile will create educational and career opportunities in the above fields. In addition, the Coordinator will develop a network of resource professionals through community partnerships.

Applicants must be between 15 and 30 years of age. Being a student is not a prerequisite for this position, though it may give the applicant a competitive advantage. The Terrace and District Museum Society encourages applicants who identify themselves as members of the Government of Canada’s job equity groups (i.e. women, persons with disabilities, visible minorities, and Aboriginal peoples).

Applications should be addressed to Kelsey Wiebe, Curator, Heritage Park Museum. They may be emailed to curator@heritageparkmuseum.com. Applicants selected for interviews will be contacted to arrange either an in-person or telephone interview by the Curator, depending on availability.

*** This position is contingent on funding from Canada Summer Jobs.