FAMILY ADVOCATE AT STAMFORD ACADEMY

JOB OVERVIEW AND REQUIREMENTS

Are you ready to transform the educational experience of students who haven’t yet found academic success?  Do you want to help ensure disengaged students are on track to succeed in high school? Do you want to be challenged, have fun, work hard, and work directly with students? Domus is looking for two family advocates to work at Stamford Academy.

Our story: In light of the recent Parthenon report “Untapped potential:  Engaging all Connecticut youth”  (http://cdn.ey.com/parthenon/pdf/perspectives/Parthenon-EY_Untapped-Potential_Dalio-Report_final_092016_web.pdf ), we know that there are 39,000 disengaged and disconnected youth in Connecticut and the need to re-engage them is urgent if we want our state to succeed and our graduation rates to rise. If we were able to cut this number in half, the economic value to the state would be over $3 billion in additional gross state product.

To that end, we are looking to hire 2 family advocates to work to re-engage disengaged high school students.  Your role would be to work with students to remove the non-academic barriers that get in the way of student learning so that they can be successful students.

REPORTS TO: Director of Family Advocacy, Denise Thomas

SUPERVISES: interns and volunteers as needed

ESSENTIAL RESPONSIBILITIES

Relentless Relationship Building and outreach with youth (40%)

  • Engage youth in 1-1, positive, life changing relationships and become a trusted go-to resource
  • Locate and transport students to school daily, sometimes multiple times per day
  • Utilize teachable moments to teach/model interpersonal communication skills
  • Provide therapy on the hoof
  • Use method of assertive friendliness-actively seeking contact with young people rather than waiting to be greeted, or for a young person to ask for help
  • Address youth’s past and current traumas and stressors as they relate to the underlying drivers of current behavioral challenges
  • Utilize Domus’ core principles to build relationships, most importantly never giving up and giving many chances

Skill Building with Youth (30%)

  • Create Student Success Plans (long and short term academic, social/emotional, behavioral and career goals) for young people
  • Develop and maintain relationships with outside community supports and connections as appropriate for young people
  • Develop and implement skills building classes, including life skills, social and emotional skills, etc.

Collaborating with school staff and outside providers (20%)

  • Coordinate/attend/advocate at meetings to support student success, including grade level meetings, special education meetings, teacher meetings, life space interviews, etc.
  • Provide crisis intervention in the classroom
  • Work with probation, DCF, mental health and other community agencies to wrap meaningful services around young people and families

Data Collection and review (10%)

  • Document daily face to face interactions with youth, as well as any behavioral and attendance challenges the youth may have
  • Document on a weekly and monthly basis all skills building opportunities
  • Document 3x per year SSP goals and progress toward those goals
  • Document any interactions with school staff in support of program youth
  • Review and respond to the data on a daily, weekly and monthly basis

OUR HIRING PROCESS & TIMELINE

  • We will review applications on a rolling basis until the position is filled. That being said, we will review all applications received by June 1st.
  • To apply, send a resume and brief letter of interest to careers@domuskids.org.  Please fully read this job description, the Parthenon report (see link above), the Family Advocate program model (click here for model) and address the following:
    1. Briefly address what about this program speaks to you and why you think you are a good fit;
    2. Briefly address your ability to achieve the program components and expected outcomes;
    3. Please tell us (briefly) how your personal values and beliefs do or do not align with the core program beliefs
  • Finalists will be invited to a second-round interview.
  • We would like to have the selected candidate start no later than June 25th.

Domus is an equal opportunity employer. Spanish speaking people and people of color, especially those from Stamford, are strongly encouraged to apply.

 ESSENTIAL REQUIREMENTS

  • Bachelor’s degree
  • A great sense of humor!
  • A strong work ethic
  • Ability to work in a fast paced program, where we will be learning together and responding to situations as they arise.
  • Able to work some evenings and some weekends
  • Commitment to our mission, values and core program beliefs
  • Valid driver’s license with a driving history that meets agency insurance requirements
  • Ability to collect required data and respond to the data
  • Flexibility and adaptability, able to shift styles to fit the needs of a wide range of cultures, people, and organizations
  • High emotional intelligence, able to easily develop deep, trusting relationships with diverse individuals from many different backgrounds
  • Impeccable written and oral communication skills
  • Love of young people, especially young people others consider unlovable

COMPENSATION

  • Salary approximately $38, 000
  • Full-time, non-exempt position, working 40.0 hours per week. We believe in work-life balance, and there will be times when the balance tips to work and when the balance tips toward life. We may work more than 40 hours when school is in session.

CORE PROGRAM BELIEFS

  • We believe that within each of us is a desire to move towards health and achievement, under the right conditions. It is our job to provide young people with those conditions.
  • We believe that every young person wants to love and be loved. It is our job to love these young people, and to help them learn to love themselves and others.
  • We believe in the power of belonging. It is a core human condition to want to be missed when we are gone.  We will miss young people when they are absent and we will express that: “We didn’t see you yesterday. We missed you.  We are glad you are back”. We will make sure every young person belongs in our community.  No matter what.  “She drew a circle to shut me out. Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout. But love and I had the wit to win. We drew a circle that took her in”(Edwin Markham)
  • We accept young people for who they are. Right here. Right now.  They do not have to change to be respected and loved and valued and be a member of our community. Behavior is not a condition of their worth as human beings.
  • We believe that every young person wants to be in charge of their own life. To that end, we will give young people a voice in this program, and choices of how to best accomplish their goals.
  • We are hungry to understand if our interventions are having the intended impact. We will be meticulous in our data entry, and ruthless in our hunt to understand the data and learn from it. If what we are doing is not working, we will set aside our egos, intentions and preconceived notions and we will change what we are doing.
  • We believe that the young people with whom we work deserve our full attention and our best selves. Therefore, we will:  NOT allow our personal beliefs or baggage to interfere with our work; we will commit to doing excellent work all the time on behalf of our young people; we will be honest and transparent with ourselves, our colleagues and our partners. To be very clear, by working in this program we are committing to:
    • Working out our personal issues outside of work;
    • Using supervision as a tool for professional growth
    • Refraining from gossiping at all costs—bringing all issues directly back to the person OR to the group session;
    • Learning our craft before practicing on our youth;
    • Giving and receiving honest feedback, even if it is uncomfortable to hear or say
    • Using data to inform our actions and interventions
  • As a trauma responsive, Sanctuary certified organization we understand hurt people hurt people. We help young people, community partners and each other heal from this trauma and we strive to move our community from “hurt people hurt people” to “helped people help people”.