More Than Words (MTW) is a nonprofit social enterprise that empowers youth, ages 16-21, who are in the foster care system, court involved, homeless, or out of school to take charge of their lives by taking charge of a business. MTW offers job training opportunities and transition support services to equip youth with first-hand experience in working as a team to operate retail and online businesses and to develop the tools to enable them to make progress around education, employment and life goals. The MTW model is premised on the belief that an actual job, one which provides hands-on, real-world training combined with high expectations, accountability and opportunities for personal development, is the best way to equip youth to gain marketable skills critical for success in school, work and life. Visit www.MTWyouth.org to learn more about the organization.
MTW is an exemplary organization that has continually held up a mirror to identify areas for improvement and accountability; that ethic is part of the culture and fabric of MTW and it extends to our commitment to ensure our staff and board reflect the racial and ethnic diversity and lived experiences of the young adults we are privileged to serve. People of color are highly encouraged to apply.
More Than Words (MTW) seeks a Youth Development Manager (YDM) with experience working directly with high-risk youth. The YDM supports youth, individually and in small groups, to set and achieve goals around education, employment and self-efficacy, to manage and navigate challenges as they transition to self-sufficiency and responsible adulthood and establishes performance standards as a basis for “compassionate accountability.” MTW utilizes a positive youth development approach, emphasizing a youth’s strengths and assets in fostering skill building around school, work and life. Youth participating in MTW have a unique opportunity to become trainees in MTW’s retail and online business enterprises as a means of obtaining first-hand on-the-job experience and the Youth Development Manager participates in the interviewing and selection process.
In addition to working directly with youth, the Youth Development Manager is responsible for youth recruitment and orientation, for representing MTW to the community and for building and enhancing relationships with referral and other community partners. As MTW is committed to using data to improve performance and results, the Youth Development Manager is responsible for accurate and timely data tracking and for incorporating data inquiry as a critical learning tool to improve practice and programs.
This position reports to the Associate Director of Youth Development in Waltham and works in partnership with the youth development and social enterprise teams.
Key responsibilities of this position include:
- Works directly with youth, managing a caseload of approximately 16 youth, to support them to set and achieve goals around education, employment and self-efficacy and to manage and negotiate obstacles to success.
- Responsible for coordinating and maintaining open, timely and ongoing communication with external youth collaterals (DCF, probation, school, etc.), as well as with other MTW staff.
- Supports youth to develop measurable action plans with clear steps, timelines and progress benchmarks in respect to education, employment and self-efficacy (including visiting colleges, signing up for GED, attending study nights, applying for jobs, creating resumes, etc).
- Promotes “compassionate accountability” and coaches youth to be accountable for their goals and plans through regular “tough-love” conversations.
- Supports youth to identify and address specific barriers or challenges in their lives and connects youth to other critical support resources (mental health, substance abuse, housing, health insurance, etc).
- Manages and facilitates two shifts of group workshops and seminars with the youth focused on education, employment and self-efficacy.
- Serves as point person to manage crisis situations as they arise (supporting youth who lose housing, relapse, need connections to health services, etc).
- Carries out all reporting and compliance efforts in a timely and accurate fashion.
Youth Development Services
- Works with youth in small groups to provide skill building instruction and feedback to support youth to achieve educational, work and life goals.
- Coordinates and carries out tactics to enhance MTW outreach, recruitment and intake efforts to identify and enroll youth that are a good fit with MTW.
- Coordinates, conducts and evaluates interviews with youth to select trainees for MTW.
- Ensures all paperwork is complete for youth case files.
- Coordinates and supports peer-led training for new youth at MTW.
Partnerships and Collaborations
- Represents MTW and enhances the visibility and awareness of MTW and its youth development programs.
- Develops and cultivates connections and collaborations with other community and public sector organizations, with local businesses and post-secondary education institutions for the purpose of generating opportunities for youth participating in MTW.
Data and Performance Management
- Continually updates the ETO (Efforts to Outcomes) database to ensure accurate and timely tracking of information.
- Supports the preparation of data reports for the purpose of identifying trends and needs, to monitor youth progress and to align staff efforts with improved practice and results.
- Utilizes data to reflect and adopt strategies to motivate youth around meeting employment and education goals.
The ideal candidate should have a minimum of an undergraduate degree and 3 years of experience working directly with high-risk youth in a youth development program or education setting, ideally with some experience with DCF and/or DYS. S/he should be able to inspire and motivate individuals and groups to work toward setting and achieving goals and to navigate and manage obstacles to meeting educational, work and life goals. An ideal candidate must be responsible, flexible, hard-working, ethical, trustworthy, sincere and willing to hold youth accountable for their choices. A strong attention to detail and high level of organization, along with solid oral and written communication skills are essential. The ideal candidate must be professional, with strong interpersonal and team building skills, as well as demonstrating solid and mature decision-making capabilities. Computer and data management skills are important. Candidate must be able to work evening hours at least two nights each week and occasional weekend hours each month.
More Than Words is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, disability, age, citizenship status, veteran status or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state or local laws.
Valid driver’s license required.
This is a salaried position with benefits, commensurate with experience.
To apply, please send resume and cover letter to youthdevelopment@MTWyouth.org and reference YDM-001 in the subject line.