Youth Program Specialist
Job Overview: The Youth Program Specialist is responsible for implementing youth-focused programming, providing immigrant youth with tools to successfully adjust and thrive in their new communities. Current programs include the Virginia Refugee School Achievement Project (VRSAP), which facilitates successful academic progress and achievement, social adjustment, and school completion of eligible youth between the ages of 5 and 18 years and the Mentoring Youth in Virginia (MYVA) program, which promotes positive civic and social engagement and supports educational and vocational advancement for eligible youth between the ages of 15 and 24 years. The Youth Program Specialist also assists parents to participate in their children’s school activities and supports schools in identifying resources needed to meet the language and cultural needs of eligible students and families. The Youth Program Specialist develops strong relationships with local school systems, students, their parents, and other relevant stakeholders.
Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
· Coordinate services to refugee children and their parents in partnership with local school systems with a goal of supporting students so they can achieve educational success through regular school attendance and participation in school activities.
· Orient newly arrived families to the American public-school system and family law issues with a goal of increasing interaction between school staff and parents as well as parental participation in classroom activities.
· Conduct pre- and post-tests of each family’s understanding of the U.S. school attendance and participation requirements.
· In consultation with management, advocate for children in situations of abuse or neglect and refer to partner agencies as appropriate.
· In consultation with management, work with parents to advocate for special needs students in identification, testing and provision of special education services.
· Improve school personnel’s understanding of refugee families’ cultural and language needs.
· Support student success by encouraging participation in activities such as after-school tutoring and mentoring, programs that encourage high school completion and full participation in school activities, after-school and summer clubs and activities, and college preparation assistance.
· Identify and offer enrollment to high potential youth in the MYVA program, developing a personalized service plan to meet their individual academic, social, and professional goals.
· Match each MYVA participant with a trained adult mentor, and monitor progress of the relationship to ensure that participant needs and goals are met.
· Develop and implement additional youth programming as applicable, such as after-school or cultural enrichment activities.
· Monitor and track students’ progress from one grade level to the next.
· Ensure required intake documents are fully completed and service plan updated as appropriate.
· Ensure timely and accurate compliance to all VRSAP and MYVA reporting requirements, including database management, case noting, and file maintenance.
· Participate in all program meetings, VRSAP and MYVA monthly conference calls, staff development activities, and other duties as assigned.
· Work as part of a team to provide comprehensive strength-based services to IRC clients through coordination of cases and effective communication between team members and departments.
· Comply with all policies, procedures, and protocols of the agency, placing importance on client confidentiality.
· Bachelor’s degree in social work, education, or related field of study is preferred.
· Minimum of 2 years relevant work experience in human services field strongly preferred.
· Demonstrated success working and communicating effectively in a multi-cultural environment.
· Proven ability to contribute both independently and as a key team member.
· Self- starter with excellent problem-solving skills combined with the proven ability to multi-task, prioritize duties, and manage time effectively.
· Fluent in English, both spoken and written; bilingual ability in a language spoken by the local refugee population is desired.
· Proficient in Microsoft Office applications (Word, Excel, Outlook).
· Valid driver’s license, access to a reliable vehicle with current insurance.
· A combination of standard office environment and ‘field’ time in and around the service delivery area to perform the above outlined responsibilities.
· May require occasional weekend and/or evening work.
COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement: In accordance with IRC’s duty to provide and maintain a workplace that is free of known hazards and our commitment to safeguard the health of our employees, clients, and communities, IRC requires candidates who are selected for interview to furnish proof of vaccination against COVID-19 in order to be considered for this position.
Commitment to Diversity and Inclusivity: IRC is committed to building a diverse organization and a climate of inclusivity. We strongly encourage applications from candidates who can demonstrate that they can contribute to this goal.
Equal Opportunity Employer: We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status. We will ensure that individuals with disabilities are provided reasonable accommodation to participate in the job application or interview process, to perform essential job functions, and to receive other benefits and privileges of employment. Please contact us to request accommodation.
We offer a comprehensive and highly competitive set of benefits. In the US, these include: 10 sick days, 10 US holidays, 20-25 paid time off days depending on role and tenure, medical insurance starting at $120 per month, dental starting at $7 per month, and vision starting at $5 per month, FSA for healthcare and commuter costs, a 403b retirement savings plans with immediately vested matching, disability & life insurance, and an Employee Assistance Program which is available to our staff and their families to support counseling and care in times of crisis and mental health struggles.