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A Holistic Expression of Hope

The Internship Program at the Brooksdale Environmental Centre is a residential apprenticeship-style program focused on living out environmental stewardship in practical and holistic ways. Internships include instruction and practical training in a concentration area – Conservation Science, Environmental Education, Sustainable Agriculture, or Food & Hospitality – yet they are so much more than work training! Internships are an invitation into a community, way of life, and expression of faith that seeks the flourishing of both people and places.

Interns live, learn, and work at Brooksdale’s beautiful heritage property in Surrey, BC. Internships run in three three-month terms a year. Consider immersing yourself in this transformative experience for one or more terms this year!

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Reserve Your Spot

Each term has space for up to 15 interns. Spaces in specific concentrations do fill up, and you are encouraged to get your application in as early as possible. It’s not too soon to apply for next year now. We would love to hear from you!
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News from the Internship Program

A Transformative Journey: Renewing Hope and Finding Rest

August 2nd, 2017|

An Intern Reflection by Philip Hurrell What can I say about my time with A Rocha? It’s been fundamentally transformative – in more ways than I could have anticipated or describe in a short [...]

The Importance of Investing in Place: Intern Reflection

July 28th, 2017|

An Intern Reflection by Erin Wiberg I was once convinced that nothing could beat the rolling prairies and mountainous landscapes of Alberta, and I never imagined myself leaving home. However, my plans changed (as plans [...]

Community at the Core

May 2nd, 2017|

An Intern Reflection by Chloe Buckwalter (Environmental Education – Spring 2017) One of the many things I have enjoyed while living at the Brooksdale Environmental Centre has been authentic, interconnected living. Each day I [...]

Program Overview

Interns live at the Brooksdale Environmental Center and participate in all that life and work here has to offer. The program is considered full-time and runs Tuesday – Saturday each week for a three-month term (Winter/Spring, Summer, or Fall). Sundays & Mondays & Holidays are off-days and interns are welcome to travel home, explore the local region, or spend some down-time at the center. There are three terms a year and many interns choose to stay for more than one term!

Program Components

Interns participate in a particular concentration areas for the term. Concentration options include Conservation Science, Environmental Education, Sustainable Agriculture, and Food & Hospitality. Each area has a program lead and a team of staff working alongside interns who learn through practical experience in their area. Learn more about each area below.
There is a weekly teaching time with interns on Thursday afternoons which cover topics centering around a theme of Creation Care Theology. These sessions seek to integrate the questions of “how does my faith relate to the work of caring for the earth?”. We will explore together the intersection of questions around personal vocation, convictions and values, faith and theology, and local and global environmental issues.
Our community gathers weekly for a rhythm of worship and reflection. Interns participate in these times of spiritual nourishment.
Interns are paired with a staff member for regular bi-weekly one-on-one mentorship. These times are designed to care for interns during their time with us and provide space for reflection and processing of community-life experiences, and personal learning.
Interns gather weekly with the internship coordinators to have an intentional group time of connection. These times vary week-to-week but you can expect them to include times together such as: watching a documentary and having discussion, going to the beach for a walk, playing a game. It is a meaningful time of getting to know one another better and maximizing our short time together.
All of our interns gain valuable life experience assisting with community meal preparation – using local, seasonal produce.
All of our interns participate to some extent with our weekly morning bird walks led by a local naturalist.
Working and living at a thriving non-profit is great experience and exposure to those potentially interested in work in the non-profit sector. Interns help and participate in a wide range of center activities outside of their program area such as community events.

Community

The Brooksdale Center is home year-round to four residential families, and also hosts a guesthouse and retreat center. Interns enter into this vibrant intentional community and often express that they feel a sense of family in this place. Interns live together in a home adjoined to the internship coordinators’ family residence. Meals are shared together with residents and staff 5 days a week for lunch and supper. In addition to their program components interns are welcomed to participate in many of our regular community practices such as a daily contemplative prayer gatherings and weekly music or games nights.

Please note that all people who live on site are also responsible for participating in community life (chores, cooking, hospitality, and assisting with on-site events).

Concentration Options

Conservation Intern

Conservation Science

Research priority species, conduct environmental monitoring, and restore riparian habitat in the Little Campbell Valley Watershed. Receive training in field-study skills as well as in data collection and reporting.

More details
Education Intern

Environmental Education

Assist in running experiential curriculum based environmental education programs for school aged kids through field trips, workshops and day camps. Work with our fun-loving education team to help connect kids to their place through nature-themed games, forest walks, garden work, pond dipping, and more!

More details
Agriculture Intern

Sustainable Agriculture

Gain valuable hands-on experience in small-scale sustainable agriculture through our Community Shared Agriculture (CSA) project. Work in a team environment to prep, plant, weed, water, and harvest farm fresh produce. Experience the wonder of watching a small seed grow into something delicious!

More details
Hospitality Intern

Food & Hospitality

Help draw the farm to table connection by cooking community meals for our center with seasonal produce grown on-site. We eat meals together daily and our hospitality interns get supported experience in the kitchen cooking with seasonal, sustainably grown food.

More details

Program Details

Location

Dates

We recommend that you apply at least 2 months prior to the start of the internship.

  • Fall 2017: September 6 – December 9 (arrival date Sept 5)
  • Winter / Spring 2018: February 7 – May 5 (arrival date Feb 6)
  • Summer 2018: May 16 – August 18 (arrival date May 15)
  • Fall 2018: September 5 – December 8 (arrival date Sept 4)
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Cost

Costs for internships include all room and board, training and opportunities related to intern program areas, community experience, and access to an A Rocha vehicle (with proper license) for community related outings. Also included in the cost is a five-day working retreat on Galiano Island – a beautiful island off the coast of BC – or another scenic location.

  • Cost of Winter / Spring Term: $2,300
  • Cost of Summer Term: $2,500
  • Cost of Fall Term: $2,500

All prices in Canadian dollars.

We are now offering a 10% discount on a second term and a 15% discount on a third term. Consider joining us for all three terms!

Is This Program For Me?

Over the years we have had interns from all over the world and from all seasons and stages of life. Interns must be at least 18 years of age to apply. We have had singles, couples and even families intern in the past. Internship may be for you if you are:

  1. In a transitional season (gap-year, recent graduates, career change),
  2. Looking for a practical outworking of your values and faith,
  3. Interested in an intentional community learning experience,
  4. An international student looking for an environmental overseas experience,
  5. Needing to fill internship credits for a university program, or
  6. Wanting to get work training and experience in one of our concentration areas.

What past interns are saying

“My Internship at A Rocha exceeded all of my expectations! It was one of the best experiences of my life.”
~ Joseph Prescott Sones, Sustainable Agriculture Intern

“Being part of the A Rocha Canada community for a season was really rewarding and gave me a real sense of what working in the conservation field is like. I enjoyed all aspects of my internship and learned a lot about life, God, science, community, and food.”
~ Jennifer Rumley, Conservation Science Intern