The Community Organizer and Trainer will support the expansion of United Neighborhood Houses of New York’s initiative to build the capacity of its member organizations to mobilize and engage their community – especially older people – as a resource and partner for building strong, vibrant neighborhoods.
United Neighborhood Houses (UNH) is the membership organization of 39 NYC settlement houses and community centers that collectively serve over 750,000 New Yorkers annually. UNH promotes and strengthens the neighborhood-based, multi-service approach to improving the lives of New Yorkers in need and the communities in which they live. Rooted in the history and values of the settlement house movement, UNH supports its members through policy development, advocacy and capacity-building activities.
The Initiative: More people are living longer and healthier lives than ever before. Called the longevity revolution, soon 1/3 of the adult population in the U.S. will be over age 60. Never before have there been so many people over age 60, with so many skills, interests, passions and knowledge. What would happen if these skills and this energy were tapped to revitalize and strengthen communities? UNH is a recognized leader in developing and promoting practices for community-based organizations to empower and mobilize older people in ways that position and engage them as powerful partners and resources for addressing local issues, meeting community needs, and strengthening community bonds. This work:
- Changes how communities view older people and how older people view themselves – not solely as recipients of services but as community builders – individuals with tested skills, knowledge, and experience gained over a lifetime who can contribute to the greater good.
- Changes the way all people see later life – as an important phase of life of equal value to all other phases, filled with meaning and purpose, and built around opportunities to contribute to the greater good, ensuring that everyone remains integrated within the full fabric of their community throughout their life span.
- Strengthens local communities by creating opportunities for older people to devote their time and talents to help community members of all ages to succeed and thrive.
- Improves the health and well-being of older people by infusing later life with purpose and meaning, connecting older people to the broader community, strengthening bonds across generations and ensuring older people have the social connections critical to health and well-being.
- Is rooted in local communities and local multi-service organizations that are embedded in and committed to these communities.
UNH is hiring a full-time staff person to deepen and extend this work. The Community Organizer and Trainer will help to expand the following practices:
- The formation of self-directed teams of older people, sponsored by their neighborhood settlement house, working to identify and address local issues of concern,
- Teams of older people working to enhance early childhood, after-school and career planning programs,
- Community planning processes led by older people,
- The creation and amplification of intergenerational community narratives to bring greater awareness of, discussion about and action around important local issues, and
- The use of social prescriptions to connect older people at risk of social isolation and loneliness to programs and opportunities that connect them to others in their community.
Tasks and responsibilities:
Reporting to UNH Director of Community Engagement, and working closely with UNH senior staff, the Community Organizer and Trainer will:
- Develop, coordinate, and provide trainings for staff regarding best practices for engaging, empowering, and mobilizing older people in their community working in partnership with all ages,
- Coach and provide technical assistance to settlement houses, staff, and older people involved in this initiative,
- Facilitate and support peer learning among those involved in this initiative,
- Track and document impact, and
- Write about and disseminate results of this empowerment approach to aging, to build awareness of, interest in and support for UNH’s initiative.
The ideal candidate will have a mix of the following experience and background:
- Minimum of 3-5 years of experience training and building the capacity of organizations (staff and program participants) to engage and mobilize community members.
- Community organizing and community building experience, with demonstrated experience in and use of a strength- and asset-based approach to their work.
- B.A. degree or higher.
- Experience working with people over age 60, along with experience working in intergenerational settings, projects and initiatives.
- Program management experience.
- Excellent communicator with strong writing skills.
- Experience tracking, measuring and evaluating programs and initiatives.
- Spanish – English Bi-lingual preferred.
- Knowledge of PowerPoint and social media platforms helpful.
The ideal candidate must be dependable, hardworking and creative, able to generate new ideas, practices and pathways for older people to be empowered and mobilized for the greater good.
Excellent medical, dental and retirement plans. Open to flexible work hours. Older people are encouraged to apply.
Professional Level: Professional
Minimum Education Required: 4-year degree
How To Apply