We are now recruiting for the 2015 HABESHA Works Program.  HABESHA Works is a green jobs training initiative that teaches basic skills in urban organic agriculture and agro-business development.  HABESHA Works promotes sustainable agriculture as a tool for economic development within communities lacking adequate job resources and those experiencing barriers to healthy, fresh, high quality foods.  The components of HABESHA Works focus on three primary objectives.  They are:

  • Providing new skills and professional development training and education in sustainable agriculture to young adults.
  • Developing a community-based approach to health disparities by training individuals to produce and distribute organically grown vegetables in the local urban environment.
  • Establishing an economic development model that creates social entrepreneurship opportunities for participants to continue utilizing their training.

Based on these objectives, there are three cycles to this intervention effort. Below is a detailed description of activities to be completed at each cycle of the program:


  • Includes 60-hours of interactive classroom work to occur over the time span of 13-weeks
  • Instruction takes place twice a weekly with one 2-hour class session and one 4-hour lab session
  • Class sessions introduce trainees to the fundamental principles and practices of sustainable agriculture
  • Lab sessions provide trainees with hands-on experiences that reinforce classroom discussions
  • Lab sessions are held in the HABESHA Gardens Complex in addition to other identified urban farm sites
  • Sessions will include site visits to area urban farms and/or guest instruction from various farm experts


  1. EDUCATION TRACK: This track focuses on expanding opportunities around community-based education programs with an emphasis on youth development. Trainees will also experience working with adult groups by participating in activities related to the HABESHA Works program. TOTAL HOURS: 150


  • Provide a sample curriculum for trainees
  • Train the trainer to hone teaching methods and instructional techniques
  • Gain experience and exposure to classroom environment
  • Develop opportunities to expand program sites


  • Provide 30-hours of classroom participation time
  • Complete 30-hours of curriculum instruction
  • 30-hours of continued volunteer support within the network
  • Develop a 8-hour training unit on a topic to be determined (30 hours)
  • Attend additional training sessions/workshops based on student’s initiative (10 hours)
  • Monthly “Cultivation Session” with current HW trainees and alum (2nd of month)
  1. URBAN FARMING TRACK: This track focuses on the development of CSA programs and farmers markets and improves the trainee’s knowledge and experience working on urban farms that emphasize small to mid-scale production and commercial distribution. Participants will have the experience of working within community gardens that provide a community-based approach to growing food for personal use. TOTAL HOURS: 220


  • Understanding methods used in larger scale production and distribution
  • Gain experience with community/volunteer based strategies
  • Learn sales and marketing techniques
  • Support and participate in Added-Value Product Development


  • 10 hours/week of continued volunteer support within HABESHA network
  • Gain hands-on training in farm management and planning
  • Develop understanding of critical components and resources used for larger urban farming management
  • Monthly “Cultivation Sessions” with current HW trainees and alum
  1. BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT TRACK: This track will work with trainees in formalizing business concepts through advisement focused on business planning. Trainees will have the opportunity to transform their business ideas into written plans and learn business strategies and work to identify resources to support their start-up. Concepts may range from business consulting to developing an added-value product and more. TOTAL HOURS: 140


  • Develop a formalized business plan to support a an entrepreneurial start-up
  • Identify resources and other strategies to support business development
  • Mandatory free trainings at Foundation Center (3) Proposal Writing Basics/Proposal Budget Basics/Grant Seeking Basics (students are tasked with registering for the classes on their own based on their schedules by a certain date for each, instructor must verify registration and attendance)


  • Students will complete a written business plan
  • Continued volunteer support within network
  • 5-7 monthly classes (3 hours each on Wednesdays 6-9PM)
  • Up to 5 hours of one-on-one training
  • Monthly “Cultivation Session” with current HW trainees and alum (2nd Saturday of month)


We are now accepting applications for the 2015 HABESHA Works Program.  We will begin interviewing applicants in February through March and notify accepted participants by March  25.  In order to be considered for the program, you must complete an in-person interview.

Please CLICK HERE to fill out the application online and begin the processing of exploring the opportunities in urban agriculture!  SUBMISSION DEADLINE IS MARCH 25, 2015!  CLASSES START ON APRIL 1st.

COURSE COST = $1,500
***Scholarships are offered based on  financial
need.  A sliding scale fee & payment plan
is available for those with financial need.
DEADLINE TO APPLY: March 25, 2015

Questions?  Email Us at habeshagardens@habeshainc.org