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Food Systems Summer Intern


Start date: Flexible
End date: Flexible, anytime before August 31
Position status: Full-time (32 hours/week, 4-day work week, Mon-Thurs) for 8 weeks
Location: Prince Rupert
Compensation: $21.00 an hour

About the Food Systems Program

Our Food Systems Program is based on Coast Ts’msyen territories in Prince Rupert, BC. Our team works towards creating collaborative, vibrant, and innovative local food economies built by and for communities, supported by local and regional food production and marketplaces that are resilient and sustainable.

To that end, Ecotrust Canada and Metlakatla Development Corporation (MDC) have been working together since 2021 to build a working regenerative ocean farm. Regenerative ocean farming (ROF) is a zero-input, polyculture model of underwater farming that grows a mix of seaweed and shellfish species. This method can help clean the water column and enhance marine ecosystems while providing food and jobs for coastal communities.

Position Summary

We’re working on what is best described as a kelp and shellfish farming start-up, which means most of our team members are jacks-of-all-trades. Over the summer months we’ll be harvesting kelp and scallops, doing ongoing cleanup and scallop husbandry, environmental monitoring and data collection, and creating or supporting engaging community events celebrating locally grown, harvested, and produced foods.

The Food Systems intern will work closely with their supervisor, Ecotrust Canada’s Mariculture Program Manager and Metlakatla’s ROF Operations Manager to contribute to all the activities mentioned above. We value new ideas and encourage each team member to bring their own perspectives, experiences, and knowledge to help shape the path forward for the project.

Key responsibilities will vary depending on the candidate and needs of the farm, but may include the following: 

On the water

  • Join Metlakatla’s ROF crew on the water at the farm as needed
  • Scallop and kelp husbandry: grading, cleaning, harvesting
  • Kelp and environmental data collection and coordination
  • Contribute to farm maintenance including, cleaning floatation and longlines, preparing farm equipment for use
  • Maintain and contribute to a safe working environment

In community

  • Maintaining and building good, equitable and reciprocal relationships with project partners, stakeholders and communities
  • Supporting community events
  • Research and other tasks as required

Meetings & team participation

  • Actively participate in team meetings
  • Contribute to Ecotrust Canada’s and Metlakatla’s public communications around ROF
  • Administrative duties and/or other related duties within the scope of the position as assigned or requested.
  • Other tasks as required

Skills and Qualifications

Essential skills and attributes:

  • Adaptable, ability to work with change
  • Prior experience living and/or working in rural, remote, Indigenous communities
  • Able to lift 50lbs and overall good physical fitness
  • Interest in Regenerative Ocean Farming, food systems, and / or marine health
  • Aligned values to those of Ecotrust Canada’s mission


  • Prior experience working on marine vessels
  • Driver’s licence

A Note on Well Being:

The Food Systems Initiative is a small but growing team. Because of this, we are collectively evolving together, and shaping the team and its dynamics mindfully. As part of this, we want to learn about and honour each other’s goals and passions in life beyond our EC positions, working together to support each other’s dreams – whether that means adapting positions to focus on strengths, taking time off for a particularly important event, or working on professional development opportunities. We want this position to support your life goals, rather than detract from it.

Everyone in our small team is ambitious – both in and outside of Ecotrust Canada – each with our own passion projects. We therefore have crafted our program to support each other to make these ambitions possible, with flexible hours, locations, and the ability to work time-in-lieu.

That said, the key is always to prioritize community visits, our community partners’ needs and their annual calendars (i.e., harvest seasons, festivals, etc.), and our project deadlines. Beyond this, with strong communication and collective support, we believe we can find a healthy work-life balance that can support our team to thrive – both personally and professionally, individually and collectively.

A Note on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion:

We will be prioritizing someone who self-identifies as First Nations for this role, and who is from a rural, remote community in British Columbia – someone who understands first-hand our program’s mission, to break down barriers for community members to be able to return to and thrive in their homelands.

Ecotrust Canada is an Equal Opportunity Employer and our employees are people with different strengths, experiences and backgrounds, who share a passion for our mission. Diversity not only includes race and gender identity, but also age, disability status, veteran status, sexual orientation, religion and many other parts of one’s identity. All of our employees’ points of view are key to our collective success, and inclusion is everyone’s responsibility.

Ecotrust Canada is committed to building respectful and reciprocal relationships with Indigenous communities and peoples. We are committed to upholding and respecting Indigenous governance, rights, and title in the places we live, work, and dream together. For more information, please see our Framework for Advancing Reconciliation here.

As per the Canada Summer Jobs program, through which this position is being funded, the applicant must be (a) is between 15 and 30 years of age (inclusive) at the start of employment; (b) is a Canadian Citizen, permanent resident, or person on whom refugee protection has been conferred under the
Immigration and Refugee Protection Act [S.C. 2001, c. 27]*; and(c) is legally entitled to work according to the relevant provincial / territorial legislation and regulations.*International students are not eligible. Recent immigrants are eligible if they are Canadian Citizens or permanent residents.

Job Application - Food Systems Summer Intern

Please submit your resume, cover letter, and two references (full names, email addresses, and phone numbers) in the form below by Monday, June 17, 2024.

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    About Ecotrust Canada

    Ecotrust Canada is an enterprising non-profit that works with rural, remote, and Indigenous communities toward building an economy that provides for a healthy and resilient natural environment; sustainable and abundant energy, food, and housing; prosperous and meaningful livelihoods; and vibrant cultures and inclusive societies. We call this approach building an economy that provides for life. Our on-the-ground work and systems approach is entrepreneurial, partnership-based, and relentlessly practical. To learn more visit