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Youth Development Program

Youth Development Program

Youth Jobs

Cultivate Hope Youth Development Program

The Cultivate Hope Youth Development Program is a paid opportunity for high-school-age students to develop and hone various skills in preparation for life beyond the classroom.

These students grow produce on our urban farm and sell at farmers markets, participate in team-building and communication exercises, make prepared foods for market, and learn about their community through guest speakers and field trips. Upon completion, students have a better understanding about health and nutrition, food systems, sales, teamwork, sustainable farm practices, environmental awareness, and how they can have a positive impact on the world around them.


A group of students pose in green shirts

Seed Crew

The main part of this program is the Seed Crew, where 15 students work four days per week during the summer at the Urban Farm, going on field trips, and completing team-building exercises with their fellow coworkers.

  • 8-week summer session, June 24 – Aug. 15, 2024
  • Weekly schedule: 8 am – 1 pm, Monday through Thursday
  • Wages are $10 per hour
  • Applicants must be at least 14 years old and no older than 18 years old as of April 1 of the program year
Two young students sell produce at a garden stand

Root Crew

In the spring and fall, the Root Crew sessions provide an extended employment opportunity that include additional training and development for 3-5 students. These students get to see and participate in the Urban Farm production season from start to finish.

  • Root Crew participates in Seed Crew and chooses an additional spring and/or fall session:
    • 1-week spring session, April 3 – May 30, 2024, Wednesday/Thursday, 3:30-7:00 pm
    • 9-week fall session, Aug. 21 – Oct. 17, 2024, Wednesday/Thursday, 3:30-7:00 pm
  • Wages are $11 per hour throughout the Spring/Fall session as well as during their time over the summer
  • Applicants must be at least 14 years old and no older than 18 years old as of April 1 of the program year

Applications for both Seed Crew and Root Crew are accepted year-round. Applications submitted after May 15, 2024 may not be considered until the 2025 seasons. Completed applications can be submitted via email to [email protected] or by mail to Matthew 25, 201 Third Ave. SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404.

2023 Program in Action

Learn more about the 2023 Seed Crew by reading our weekly Summer Stories blog posts or watching our video:

Meet Kendal!

Meet Kendal!

Education Leader

Contact Kendal if you have any questions about this or the application process.