JOB OPPORTUNITIES

Currently, Friends of Island Academy is hiring for the following positions:

Project Director, The Makeba Project 

Programs Coordinator

Case Manager

Youth Advocate for Education

Data Support Associate

Positions will be posted until filled.


 

Title:         Project Director, The Makeba Project   (Full-time position)

Friends of Island Academy (Friends) was created in 1990 at an alternative high school on Rikers Island, rooted by a collaboration between NYC education staff who sought to address recidivism rates, untapped potential and minority overrepresentation among adolescents attending school while in custody. Our mission is to reduce recidivism by developing the long-term capacity of high-risk, court-involved youth to rebuild their lives. We do so by facilitating a shift in young peoples’ trajectory to become economically independent adults, connected to their communities in positive ways.   Friends’ program staff has the fundamental responsibility to understand, embrace and promote the organization’s vision and build on the resilience and promise of our youth members.

Friends is seeking a Project Director to lead the start-up and implementation of The Makeba Project, a newly funded federal contract to support young mothers returning home from Rikers Island. Funded by the federal Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, The Makeba Project is a young mothers’ reentry mentoring program.

Essential Responsibilities

Collaborate with agency executive team and colleagues, lead the start-up of The Makeba Project

  • Collaborate with Friends’ team at the Rose M. Singer Center as well as other facility-based service providers (non-profit providers, DOE and DOC) to identify young mothers while in custody and engage them to participate and enroll in the Makeba Project;
  • Develop and implement a system of mentoring supports which begin in custody through group and one-on-one settings in the facility;
  • Collaborate with Friends colleagues to leverage effective integration of existing supports and services across the agency to implement and focus specialized mentoring supports on behalf of young mothers leaving jail.
  • Supervise and support one part-time staff member, a Lead Mentor – a Credible Messenger.
  • Work with OJJDP staff and technical assistance providers during the planning phase and throughout, to develop collegial working relationships, understand and establish appropriate performance measures and ensure a collective focus on achieving the goals of the Makeba Project.

Work in collaboration with agency executive team and colleagues, ensure the effective implementation of the Makeba Project

  • Develop and embrace approaches to leverage relationships which begin in custody;
  • Facilitate young mothers’ ability and motivation to achieve short and longer- term outcomes in parenting skills development, relationships with significant others, increased quality of engagement, increased economic stability and reduced risk of recidivism;
  • Ensure that trauma informed approaches specific to girls and young mothers are incorporated in interactions, approaches and services.

Develop systems to recruit, train, support and nurture a cadre of volunteer mentors (“Makeba’s List) to be available and connected to young mothers and expectant mothers

  • Support the Lead Mentor in engaging families prior to a young woman’s release; recruiting matching and retaining volunteer mentors; developing a support network and a team of 5 mentors annually.
  • Develop guidelines and materials for Makeba’s List mentors and a system for training in both one on one and group mentoring approaches;
  • Instill respect and appreciation for positive development in a strength-based environment and promote development of youth members’ intrinsic motivation.
  • Identify and train interested organization Trustees and other recruits in a specific financial literacy workshop for young people covering the rudiments of budgeting and financial planning – inside and outside the facility setting.

Qualifications

Required

  • Bachelor’s degree in relevant field;
  • Minimum 4 years, experience working with court-involved youth and/or girls/young women;
  • Commitment to positive youth development in a caring environment;
  • Must be able to gain clearance on Rikers Island (no contact with criminal justice system for minimum of two years, including parole or probation),
  • Strong oral and written communication skills.

Preferred

  • Bilingual ability.

To apply, please send resume and cover letter (Microsoft Word or PDF format) as attachments in an email to Gina Lee at glee@friendsny.org with “Project Director, The Makeba Project” in subject line.


 

Title: Programs Coordinator

Organization Description

Friends of Island Academy (Friends) was founded in 1990 to anchor, support and develop capacity among young people newly released from jail in New York City. A pioneer in adolescent reentry services, Friends builds on connections developed with young people while in custody, and leverages these relationships to provide post-release, neighborhood-based supportive services. Young people become members of Friends and develop personal milestones and goals in the arenas of health and well-being, education, employment, youth leadership and community participation.

Position Background and Description

The Youth Reentry Network (The Network) is a newly-created Demonstration project developed in collaboration with the New York City Department of Correction and other public and private partners to launch, implement and evaluate the feasibility and impact of an innovative system of case expediting, pre-release planning and neighborhood-based aftercare and support for the youngest people admitted to and released from DOC custody in New York City.   The Network is designed to work with all adolescents (16-17) and approximately half of young adults (18-21) who are admitted post-arraignment to Rikers Island, at three primary points of intervention: upon admission, transitionally and post-release in their neighborhoods.

The Programs Coordinator will support the identification, vetting, coordination, and management of multiple community-based partners contracted to provide programming for young people (16-21 years old) in one of our four facilities on Rikers Island. Working under the supervision of the Director of Programming, the Coordinator’s primary responsibilities include facilitating communication among service providers, DOC programs staff and Friends’ advocacy and mitigation teams to best support the effectiveness, quality, and timeliness of programming for youth held on Rikers Island. 

Essential Responsibilities

Facilitate logistics and support program providers/subcontracted partners working with youth on Rikers Island

  • Assist Director of Programming with managing operational logistics for service providers while ensuring expectations for programming are upheld on Rikers and within the community;
  • Collaborate with Friends’ advocacy staff to forge post-release engagement between providers and young people;
  • Communicate with Rikers’ youth advocates, coordinators and court advocacy team as needed on a case by case basis to highlight youth participation in programming on Island and upon reentry to community;
  • Co-manage scheduling of programming, service providers clearances for access on Rikers and data for the various subcontractors who operate within four facilities on Island;
  • Attend meetings with service providers as well as Rikers building committee meetings and facility based meetings to strengthen communication between agencies with goal of improving collaborative efforts to support youth;
  • Ensuring data accountability and accuracy from service providers within 24 hours post workshops.

Build and leverage relationships with service providers and other relatable youth programs in New York City

  • Work closely with the Director of Programs, establish relationships with youth organizations, especially those providing services which are beneficial to justice involved youth upon discharge within the five boroughs;
  • Foster proactive outreach with discharged youth by program providers;
  • Visit neighborhood programs to get to know their services and establish meaningful connections;
  • Keep a working knowledge of programs and services available to youth coming out of jail in New York City.

Leverage relationships with DOC programs staff, Friends’ building coordinators and advocates to encourage youth participation in programs with extended community service.

Qualifications

Required

  • B.S./B.A. in relevant field or commensurate experience;
  • Minimum of six years’ experience in juvenile/criminal justice/youth servicing organizations or agencies of which at least 2 in a supervisory capacity;
  • Excellent communication skills;
  • Experience/training in youth development; proven experience in facilitation and staff supervision; strong interpersonal skills, cultural competence, and an understanding of and belief in strengths-based youth development philosophy are required to succeed in this position;
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Excel and other business software;
  • Experience with databases and report development;
  • Individuals with prior criminal justice involvement are encouraged to apply but must be able to gain clearance on Rikers Island (no contact with criminal justice system for two years, including parole or probation);
  • Necessary personal characteristics include integrity, respect, humor and flexibility.

Preferred

  • Experience in program start-up and/or working in a secure setting strongly preferred.

To apply, please send resume and cover letter (Microsoft Word or PDF format) as attachments in an email to Gina Lee at glee@friendsny.org with “Programs Coordinator” in subject line.


 

Title: Case Manager

Organization Description

Friends of Island Academy (Friends) was founded in 1990 to anchor, support and develop capacity among young people newly released from jail in New York City. A pioneer in adolescent reentry services, Friends builds on connections developed with young people while in custody, and leverages those relationships to provide post-release, neighborhood-based supportive services. Young people become members of Friends and develop personal milestones and goals in the arenas of health and well-being, education, employment, youth leadership and community participation.

Position Background and Description

Friends is seeking a Case Manager for its Friends 2 Fathers (F2F) program. Funded by the Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD), F2F seeks to help fathers connect with their families, engage more deeply on a social and emotional level with their children, and increase their financial support. F2F provides classes in Parenting, “Batterers’ Accountability”, and Anger Management along with case management, mentoring and other supports for fathers (18 and over) in the Bronx. The Case manager, as part of a team of Case Managers, Outreach Specialists, and the Project Director will conduct classes, provide case management services, and provide mentoring support to fathers, as they seek to deepen their engagement with their families.

Essential Responsibilities

Provide ongoing Case Management for a caseload of 20 fathers

  • Participate in weekly intakes with newly enrolled fathers;
  • Conduct a comprehensive assessment of each father and his family’s needs;
  • Meet weekly one-on-one to support fathers and maintain a caseload of fathers;
  • Provide counseling and referrals to needed services;
  • Provide updates and progress letters to the courts, probation and child welfare administration as requested;
  • Lead and co-lead bi-weekly mentoring and co-parenting activities;
  • Maintain accurate and timely documentation in DYCD database and F2F electronic records.

Facilitate parenting, anger management, and batterers’ accountability classes for non-custodial classes

  • Teach three 20-session Parenting Classes per year;
  • As needed, teach a 26 week Batters’ Accountability class based on the Duluth Model;
  • As needed, teach a 10 session Anger Management class;
  • Cover colleagues’ classes when substitutions are necessary.

Support other F2F initiatives

  • Participate in team meetings, trainings, and planning sessions;
  • Participate in agency-wide activities;
  • Support the ongoing mission and work of the program as needed.

Qualifications

Required

  • Bachelor’s degree preferred and/or relevant experience working with youth population;
  • Three to five years’ experience working with fathers and/or justice-involved youth and adults;
  • Strong interpersonal skills, cultural competence, and an understanding and belief in strengths-based practices and youth development philosophy;
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office;
  • Strong oral and written communication skills;
  • A sense of humor, integrity, flexibility and a profound commitment to the participants we serve;
  • Fluency in Spanish;
  • Individuals with prior criminal justice involvement are encouraged to apply.

To apply, please send resume and cover letter (Microsoft Word or PDF format) as attachments in an email to Gina Lee at glee@friendsny.org with “Case Manager” in subject line.


 

Title: Youth Advocate for Education

Organization Description

Friends of Island Academy (Friends) was founded in 1990 to anchor, support and develop capacity among young people newly released from jail in New York City. A pioneer in adolescent reentry services, Friends builds on connections developed with young people while in custody, and leverages those relationships to provide post-release, neighborhood-based supportive services. Young people become members of Friends and develop personal milestones and goals in the arenas of health and well-being, education, employment, youth leadership and community participation.

Position Background and Description

Friends’ Kalief Browder Center for Education provides instructional and instruction-related services to young people coming home from Rikers Island along with other criminal justice involved youth. These include three separate initiatives: a ReStart Academy for youth seeking to gain a regular high school diploma; the Hampshire School, an offsite HSE/paid internship program; and an on-site High School Equivalency (HSE) class. The Education Advocate will provide support to the students in the Hampshire School and the on-site HSE class and support the larger goals of the Youth Reentry Network.

Essential Responsibilities

Provide daily, consistent support to students in our Hampshire School and on-site HSE class

  • Engage in and foster positive, trusting relationships with students and improve school climate and culture by encouraging staff, student and family involvement in education;
  • Provide students with responsive and attentive support and encouragement to maintain consistent attendance and positive participation in learning activities;
  • Support and assist in the teaching and learning by encouraging supportive and inclusive learning environments;
  • Effectively create a caring and successful learning community, inside and outside the school, through modeling positive behaviors;
  • Ensure students are learning in a safe, violence-free, and supportive learning environment;
  • Assist students in the development of effective strategies in areas such as academics and social and emotional learning;
  • Provide pertinent and effective workshops to students that engage and spark their interest, provide exposure to new ideas and experiences, and broaden their worldview;
  • Maintain communication with parents/care givers, other members of the school communities, probation officers, attorneys and other service providers;
  • Establish connections with community partners, maintain knowledge of the services they provide, and assist families in accessing community services, resources and supports.

Work closely with other members of the Kalief Browder Center team

  • Assist and support with intakes and testing, and other administrative processes;
  • Enter regular progress notes in ETO, our participant database; maintain attendance data; provide monthly and quarterly statistics and reports as needed;
  • Communicate positively and effectively, and interact as a collaborative team member.

Participate in Friends’ community-based advocacy team

  • Participate in weekly case-conferencing sessions as appropriate;
  • Help organize and build Friends’ Community Meetings and other activities;
  • Support other youth needs as time permits;
  • Keep current by participating in job-related training and staff development.

Qualifications

Required

  • Bachelor’s degree preferred and/or relevant experience working with youth population;
  • Two years of experience youth and young adults who are systems involved (i.e. juvenile justice, child welfare, etc.);
  • Two years of experience working in a community based setting providing education-related support;
  • Integrity, flexibility and a profound commitment to the youth we serve;
  • Commitment to working collegially and in a team-based setting;
  • Experience/training in youth development;
  • Strong interpersonal skills, cultural competence, and an understanding and belief in strengths-based youth development philosophy;
  • Strong oral and written communication skills;
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Excel and other business software; experience with data tracking/entry and report development.

Preferred

  • Experience with trauma informed practices;
  • Experience in restorative justice practices;
  • Experience with mediating and de-escalating conflicts in a youth center or classroom setting.

To apply, please send resume and cover letter (Microsoft Word or PDF format) as attachments in an email to Gina Lee at glee@friendsny.org with “Youth Advocate for Education” in subject line.


 

Title: Data Support Associate

Organization Description

Friends of Island Academy (Friends) was founded in 1990 to anchor, support and develop capacity among young people newly released from jail in New York City.  A pioneer in adolescent reentry services, Friends builds on connections developed with young people while in custody, and leverages those relationships to provide post-release, neighborhood-based supportive services.  Young people become members of Friends and develop personal milestones and goals in the arenas of health and well-being, education, employment, youth leadership and community participation.

Position Background and Description

Friends of Island Academy’s Youth Reentry Network (The Network) is a newly created Demonstration Project developed in collaboration with the New York City Department of Correction and other public and private partners to launch, pilot, implement and evaluate the impact of an innovative system of case expediting, pre-release planning and neighborhood-based aftercare and support for the youngest people admitted to and released from DOC custody in New York City.

SCOPE:

The Youth Reentry Network recognizes the crucial role that data plays in supporting core staff functions across the varied locations, including our core services of providing advocacy and case processing and mitigation services, reporting for funder requests for information, staff supervision, and the development of strong, evidence-informed programming. The Data Support Coordinator is responsible for routinely producing monitoring reports, maintaining data, quality assurance and data integrity in the Efforts to Outcomes (ETO) database used by Network staff for data and documentation purposes. The Data Support Coordinator will also routinely extract data from the NYC Department of Corrections systems to facilitate and improve Network efforts on Rikers as well as in the community. The Data Support Coordinator will assist with end user support, staff training, system documentation, configuration and testing of system enhancements and bug fixes, query and report building, and quality assurance, with the goal of supporting service delivery.

RESPONSIBILITIES:

  • Assist in the development of target trackers and monitoring indicators; implement and support use of target trackers and monitoring indicators.
  • Assist in the refinement of data reports and data entry that will improve alignment with required reporting needs, including review of programmatic procedures designed to collect data in real time.
  • Provide support to the Network Leadership Team and Building Coordinators to maintain databases for coordination of services, using the various database systems, including assisting with quality assurance, and troubleshooting.
  • Coordinate with Network Team to identify needs at field level for technical assistance in reporting and tracking data; provide support and technical assistance through coaching, support, and developing handbooks and manuals.
  • Run daily and weekly reports for program staff that supports and promotes effective service delivery.
  • Other duties as assigned.

REQUIREMENTS:

  • Bachelor’s degree preferred, preferably in Social Sciences, Information Systems, or related field.
  • Experience with social service case management or program management software, client relationship management, relational databases, or other information systems for case/client management preferred.
  • Previous experience working in a non-profit or social service agency environment helpful.
  • Demonstrated experience with Microsoft Office suite, particularly Excel.
  • Knowledge of and/or experience with ETO desirable.
  • Attention to detail and the ability to follow instructions fully is essential.
  • Solid organizational, prioritization, and time management skills required.
  • Flexible work attitude: the ability to work in a diverse team environment and independently, and to meet unexpected demands.
  • Ability to effectively deliver both on-site and virtual/remote technical assistance to a diverse and cross-cultural audience.

HOW TO APPLY:

To apply, please send resume and cover letter (Microsoft Word or PDF format) as attachments in an email to Gina Lee at glee@friendsny.org with “Data Support Associate” in subject line.