The Northern Farm Training Institute (NFTI) is a non-profit society created by local Métis and northern farming expert, Jackie Milne, in 2013. We operate on a 260-acre campus in Hay River, Northwest Territories. We provide immersive farm training to people committed to improving local food systems.

Our vision is to be a holistic farm and educational centre to genuinely empower people to transform their lives. We support a vibrant regenerative landscape while building productive local farms and thriving, healthy communities.

More about history, visit our story and our newsletter archive here. Download our info sheet: NFTI Brief Overview 2018

Learn more about the work we do and our connection to the Savory Network with this amazing video created by volunteer Nathan Soulez-Lariviere.

Meet the Team

Jackie Milne

Founder & President

Jackie’s endless energy, enthusiasm, and fiery determination are what started this farm school, and she continues to be the driving force behind our unstoppable success. Jackie received the Meritorious Service Medal from the Governor General of Canada in November of 2016 for her work finding real solutions to Canada’s northern food issues.

Jacob Robinson

Agriculture Coordinator

Jake is a plant biologist, visited as a volunteer in summer 2019 and returned to oversee and coordinate our agriculture research projects. He is also our pig master, butcher, natural builder and many more!

Sandy Wood

BRIDGE Program Coordinator

With a background in cultural geography and a Master’s in special education, Sandy has spent over ten years involved with a culturally-grounded, child-centered school and community in a remote, indigenous region of the Indian Himalayas. At NFTI, Sandy supports our BRIDGE interns’ growth in social-emotional aspect, cognitive skill-building, and provides academic tutoring in alignment with each participant’s personal needs and goals.

Helane Chan

Site Manager

Helane, a world traveler, previously managed the garden and is now more focused on managing the animal systems. She has trained with the Environment Celebration Institute, completing Dr. Elaine Ingham’s Life in the Soil Classes and has a Bachelor of Applied Science (Mechanical Engineering) from the University of Toronto.

Carl Rymer


Carl is from K’atl’odeeche First Nation and has experience in chainsaw and construction work. Since starting in June 2019, Carl has been working hard on turning our forest thicket into silvopasture, building trails and setting up fencing for new forest pasture paddocks.

Board of Directors

President: Jackie Milne

Secretary/Treasurer: Helen Green

Director: Chief Roy Fabian

Director: Bob Bromley

Director: Leon Bouchard

Get Involved

We are always looking for help. Whether you want to volunteer to help with the farm, or if you have other assets you would like to offer, we would love to hear from you!

Local Volunteers: Please fill out the NFTI Volunteer Form 2020 and submit to us.

Out-of-Town Volunteers: We host national & international volunteers through WWOOF and WorkAway.

Come Learn with us!

Work with experienced northern farmers, eat local food, and get inspired by life on a productive northern farm! We teach regenerative agriculture and holistic management through immersive, hands-on programs. Learn More