Volunteer

Volunteer work is such a crucial part of our efforts at Oxbow. As non-profit farm and conservation center in Carnation, WA, we are dedicated to building the world we want to see. Join us in our work to inspire people to become good stewards of the land and deepen their understanding, love, and connections between their community and its ecosystem.

Jump to:
Ongoing opportunities
Ways to volunteer
FAQs

We offer several volunteer opportunities for anyone interested in habitat restoration, conservation, agriculture, and environmental education.

Please use the links below to register for each option. If you don’t see something that works for you, sign up for our newsletter to hear about new openings, events, and more!

Questions? email us at volunteer@oxbow.org

Ongoing volunteer opportunities

Restoration Work Parties

Join Oxbow’s Conservation Team on the 2nd Saturday of every month from 10am to 1pm as we give a hand in improving critical habitats for plants and wildlife, helping combat climate change.

It’s satisfying, physical work that includes planting trees and removing a variety of invasive weeds, depending on the season.

Upcoming 2023 Dates:

February 11, March 11, April 8, May 13, June 10, July 8, August 12, September 9, October 14, November 11, and December 9

Save for later?

Click here to open this event on Facebook. Select Interested, and that’s it! You’ll be reminded of any upcoming dates. 

Register Now

An important note before signing up

If you are volunteering at Oxbow, here are the steps that every volunteer needs to follow before leaving their house:

  1. Read our Covid Policies here
  2. Come with a full water bottle and gardening gloves if you have them
  3. Underage 18? Please also bring a completed Minor Waiver form

Ways to volunteer

Ages 16 & up | Pre-registration required | Weekdays only | Flexible schedule | 2-6 hours 

**Currently on hold until February 2023**. Conservation Volunteers work directly along with Oxbow’s Conservation and Restoration team. Join their efforts during the workweek on an ongoing basis. All work is done outdoors, rain or shine. It’s satisfying, physical work, that includes planting trees and removing a variety of invasive weeds, depending on the season. Conservation Volunteers will deepen their understanding of the entire restoration process and may be invited to work independently on restoration tasks or participate in ongoing research projects as they increase their familiarity with Oxbow, its grounds, and the team members. While work usually takes place at Oxbow, we do have some opportunities in other places in the Watershed. 

Apply here!

3-4 hours/month | April – August

Bird Community Science Volunteers survey the species of birds that use the various habitats of Oxbow. Volunteers work together to perform monthly surveys from April through August. You will be working alongside our core group of experienced volunteers, who can help boost your birding capabilities from good to great! Ideal volunteers should have some birding experience, including the ability to identify common birds of Western Washington by sight and/or sound. Volunteers should be able to commit 3-4 hours per month and be prepared to wake up early! Oxbow will host a training in February 2023, so please sign up early to get on our list of interested volunteers.

 

Apply here!

Ages 15+ | Registration required | Second Saturday of every month | 10am-1pm

Join Oxbow’s Conservation Team on the 2nd Saturday of each month as we learn about and improve critical habitats for plants and wildlife and help combat climate change.
You must be willing to come ready to do physical work and get your hands dirty with rewarding work helping hands-on our land and ecosystem by removing weeds, clearing invasives, planting new species, and more.
Work happens outdoors, rain or shine, and focuses on a particular project and/or location, such as planting trees and digging up blackberries. While work usually takes place at Oxbow, we have some opportunities in other areas in the watershed. With your help, we can help bring back salmon (and orcas!) and rebuild a resilient landscape that supports people’s livelihoods, produces food, and remains beautiful and ecologically diverse!

Upcoming Dates: December 10 (2022), January 14, February 11, March 11, April 8, May 13, June 10, July 8, August 12, September 9, October 14, November 11, and December 9

 
NOTE:
– Parties are limited to 20 volunteers, please register before arriving.
– Arrive on time. Punctuality is crucial to the success of these events.
– Dress for the weather, and don’t forget your water bottle.

REGISTER NOW

Scroll down to select your preferred date, time.

Ages 10 & up with adult participation | Pre-registration required | Flexible schedule | 2-4 hours

Bring your team, company, scout group, club, fitness group, or friends out to do some fun, fulfilling, and meaningful work improving habitats in the Snoqualmie Valley. Activities might include weeding, planting, or spreading mulch and will take place outdoors, rain or shine. Groups are also welcome to plan a picnic lunch, a group hike, or a tour of the farm along with their volunteering. Groups of children under 14 must be accompanied by at least one adult per four children and adults must be active participants. We strongly encourage our young visitors to also schedule a Family Farm Adventure with our education team for additional fun and learning.

Group coordinators should reach out to volunteer@oxbow.org to arrange group habitat restoration events. Please include preferred dates or date ranges, an estimate of group size, and an estimate of the number of volunteers under age 18.

Pre-registration required | Total group size limited to 10 people | 2 hours    

gleaning

Oxbow is thrilled to partner with Hopelink, FareStart, and Jewish Family Service of Seattle in their food access efforts. Each week, volunteers gather at Oxbow to collect produce from our fields for donation to area food banks. A typical glean will collect 75-100 pounds of produce to nourish food bank clients.

Gleaning is real, productive, feel-good work that gets you out of the office and into nature! Whether you’re able to volunteer once or for the entire season, we’re grateful for all who donate their time to save food and feed the King County community! Oxbow offers a variety of gleaning opportunities for individuals and groups in collaboration with our hunger relief partners. For more information and to sign up via one of our partners, visit our Food Access page

Kids’ Farm Volunteers

[CLOSED FOR 2022] Oxbow Education is often seeking volunteers to help with the management and upkeep of our 2-acre Kids’ Farm and Living Playground. Tasks vary by season but can include weeding, harvesting, transplanting, and starting seeds. It’s a physical, but rewarding way to share the love with the land, come ready to break a sweat, and connect with like-minded folks!

Ages 15 & up | Pre-registration required | 8 hours daily during summer camp sessions

Volunteers are a crucial piece of the week-long day farm camps Oxbow holds each summer. Summer Camp Volunteers work with children ages 7 through 11 to instill the magic of nature and educate them about food, how it’s grown, and our overarching food systems.  MUST pass a background check, and attend a session of volunteer training in June. Parents/guardians of campers are encouraged to volunteer! 

Apply here!

FAQs

Each program manages its own volunteers according to their needs. As you click through above on the different opportunities available, you’ll notice it lists the ages. In general, we accept all volunteers that are able and willing to do physical work in the fields, gardens, conservation sites, and even off-site.

If you think someone outside the suggested age range would be a good candidate or be interested, just reach out to us at volunteer@oxbow.org. Let’s talk about it!

Work happens outdoors, rain or shine, so check the weather ahead of time and dress accordingly. We’ll provide tools such as shovels, clippers, bags, etc. But please remember to bring personal items such as:
• Sun protection (hats, caps, etc.)
• Sunscreen (even on cloudy days!)
• Water
• Snacks/ Small lunch
• Closed-toe shoes (preferably sturdy boots)
• Face mask
Please make sure to register before arriving at any volunteering site, so we can be prepared for you. Punctuality is crucial to the project’s success; please plan your drive ahead of time.

Not necessarily. Certain volunteer positions, like Summer Camp volunteers, where previous experience is preferred, but it is not a requirement.

Our staff will provide guidance and answer your questions to make sure you have a good time and learn a lot.

We have Honey Buckets and hand sanitizing stations across our property. However, some restoration work is done in areas further from the barn and farm areas. Please make sure to use the restroom upon arrival before moving on to the restoration site.

Sort of, yes. Oxbow is a real farm and conservation center. Volunteer work deals with removal of (sometimes thorny) invasive species, transplanting plugs, manipulating soil, shovels, high-dense brush areas, etc. so there is always a small possibility of issues such as allergies; wildlife encounters like ants, bees, spiders, beavers, and garden snakes;  Nothing to be scared of, but definitely important to know we’ll be working out in nature.

Our staff will provide all the gear and instructions you need to stay safe.