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Opportunity: AYAUPLIFT: Workforce Development Training Through Gardens and Markets (Washington, DC)

Learn more and apply HERE

AyaUplift is a six-month intensive skills training and personal development program for DC residents with low incomes who live in public housing and/or receive public assistance. The program will use DOL’s Community Markets, the Organic Garden at Blind Whino in Southwest, and the Farm at Kelly Miller as training sites that introduce program participants to a healthy food culture while also giving them transferable employment skills and fair wages.

The program runs for 26 weeks and has four components: Garden Training, Farmers Market Training, Food Systems & Community Engagement Training, and Personal Leadership Development. At Dreaming Out Loud, we don’t simply aim to create healthy food consumers or good employees – we work to develop and support community leaders and entrepreneurs who can make a significant impact on the health and wellbeing of their communities.

AyaUplift Program Application Process

Application Deadline: Friday, March 16, 2018. Please submit application by email, mail, or deliver to the following address:

Dreaming Out Loud, Inc.

We Work, 80 M Street SE

Washington, DC 20003

You can also complete this application online at the link below. 

Submitted Application Packet must include:

  1. The application
  2. Picture identification
  3. Social security card

(Please make copies of your picture ID & Social Security card and attach to your application or email a picture of your ID and SS card to

The Selection Process

After submitting the application packet documents, DOL/H2H and review panel will pre-screen the applications and contact selected candidates to schedule the first interview. We anticipate a high volume of applications. You will receive notification that your application was received and will be informed of your status at each level of review. Not all applicants will advance to the interview stage.

If the candidate successfully completes the interview, he/she/they will be scheduled for an evaluation period at the Farm at Kelly Miller (301 49th Street NE). Candidates will perform a series of activities related to the typical workday on a urban farm, farmer’s market and/or warehouse.

Participants  will be evaluated on the following criteria:

  •  Positive Attitude
  •  Arriving on time
  • Ability to follow instructions
  • Speed
  • Ability to focus
  • Team work
  • Ability to work outdoors

If candidates receive favorable evaluations – meaning at least “GOOD” in each category, candidates will be asked to complete and pass the drug screening. If they pass, applicants will be placed in a pool of eligible matches for enrollment. We will complete the final selection and notify applicants by April 15, 2018. Those who are not chosen will be placed on a waitlist.

After the program start date, there is a 2 – week probationary period, in which candidates may withdraw. This is also a time for instructors to assess Candidates on their performance. During the probationary period, wait-list applicants may be enrolled to fill those spots within the first eight to ten days of the program.

The Wait List selection process is determined by the candidate most qualified to pick up and catch up – eight to ten days into the program. Waitlisted candidates will be called/emailed by May 18, 2018 and must respond in writing that they can show up on Tuesday, May 22, 2018.


The applicant must:

  1. Be at least 18 years of age.
  1. Be available to be engaged in program activities anytime between the hours of 8:00 am to 2:00pm, Tuesday through Saturday.
  1. Be curious, ready to learn, and able to complete all homework assignments.
  1. Be interested and eligible to work full-time in a food service career.
  1. Must not have any outstanding arrest warrants.
  1. Must live in a stable housing environment.
  1. Have 120 days drug free before the first day of class and be willing to undergo random drug screenings throughout the training.
  1. Be either unemployed or underemployed.
  1. Be able to read, speak, and comprehend English.
  1. Be able to operate in a fast paced environment.
  1. Be able to work outside for a minimum 5 hours during the peak summer season (with breaks).
  1. Have the ability to complete tasks that require hand-eye coordination at arms length.

If there is any reason that would prohibit you from working FULL-TIME, you will not be eligible.

Click here to complete the online application.