Sarah Twigg Blog Post

Assistantship Programme

    • Do you dream of a world where we live, work and connect in a different way?
    • Would you like the opportunity to step out of your daily routine to explore your perspectives of how to live in the world, in the context of our beautiful countryside in Devon?
    • Would you like to experience what it feels like to be exploring those questions, living and working alongside others as part of a community?
    • Are you seeking to gain experience in a dynamic and unique social enterprise and contribute to realising that enterprise’s potential?
    • Are you eager to use your skills and experience to contribute to how we impact upon the world and develop new skills along the way?
    • Are you ready to work hard while developing your capacity for leadership and taking action?
    • Are you looking for structured opportunities to support you on your Twin Trail, including coaching and opportunities to organise and attend workshops within the community?

Then an Embercombe Assistantship could be just what you are looking for!

What is the Assistantship programme?

The assistantship programme has evolved from several years as an apprenticeship scheme. The scheme is still evolving and we are looking to the next cohort of assistants to help it evolve further!

We are seeking people to fulfil key operational positions at Embercombe, living and working here for up to a year, specialising in specific areas of the operation. Each assistantship position is called  a co-ordinator which reflects the fact that these positions work alongside managers across the operation but at the same time fulfil key roles of supervision and responsibility. They might elsewhere be called an ‘intern’. In collaboration with other members of the team, co-ordinators have the opportunity to shape their role into one that best meets their own developmental needs and the needs of the organisation. In recognising the level of commitment and responsibility required in these positions compared to the volunteer positions, a small stipend is provided to cover basic living expenses.

What positions are available?

We are looking for people who want to join the assistantship programme, using their gifts and passion to support Embercombe in our work on a day-to-day level so that we achieve our purpose.

The positions available are (click on each for a role description):

Kitchen Co-ordinator

Living on-site, the co-ordinators will live alongside those on our short-term volunteer programmes and some staff members. The scheme offers a wonderful opportunity to live, work and play as part of a larger community of people – our volunteers, staff, participants on our programmes and visitors – who share the passion for the Twin Trail and honouring the Children’s Fire.

On the assistantship programme, you will have a specific role specialising in and contributing to one key area of our work. You will be a full member of the team and will take responsibility for engaging with and hosting all those who visit Embercombe either on programmes or as volunteers. We ask that you work 37.5 hours per week on your core duties, with some flexibility. In addition, as a resident you will also be required to volunteer two evening kitchen shifts and one 3-hour housekeeping shift a month.

The Exchange

We will support you to develop your capacity for leadership, to take responsibility, and to take action for a better world, both at Embercombe and after your time here.  The roles are challenging and can be tiring, physically and emotionally demanding, and involve mundane work.  However, we hope that the exchange that we offer is strong, fair and an exciting prospect to you!

We outline the full exchange in the role descriptions. It includes a small stipend, accommodation, and a whole range of benefits gained from contributing to Embercombe’s ongoing evolution, the chance to explore your own worldview and share perspectives with others, and the opportunities for growth, joy and friendship that arise while living, working and playing as part of the Embercombe community.

We also offer a structured personal and professional development programme for assistants that includes regular coaching and oppotunities to attend or organise workshops.

Who are we looking for?

We need you to have an existing level of skill and experience in your area of responsibility. You will join our developing team as a strong communicator, thinker and doer. We love ideas but we also love action, so an ability to roll up your sleeves and make things happen is essential.

You will be naturally entrepreneurial, pragmatic, inclusive, and resilient. You will be interested in growing as a whole person, open to asking tough questions of yourself, and willing to embrace new ways of thinking, being and doing.

Please read the role descriptions (above) for more information about who we are looking for in each role.

Are you excited by this opportunity? Looking for a year unlike any other? Are you ready?

To Apply:

1.Please download the relevant role description by clicking on the role above that  you wish to apply for:

2 Download the Residential Assistantship Application Form 2017 (Word), complete it and send it to Clare Mann, HR and Finance Manager, via email at

We will be advertising until the post is filled, and will be interviewing after assessing each application. We anticipate that we will have recruited all positions by the end of March 2017.

Please note:  We would prefer the kitchen assistantships to start in March 2017 at the latest, although there is some flexibility. The programme is scheduled  for up to a year. Please specify on the application form the dates that you can commit to.

Know someone who might be interested?

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