Youth Advocacy Coordinator

Website Elevate Youth Services

Position Summary: 
The Youth Development Program (YDP) seeks a full-time Advocacy Coordinator to facilitate a youth-adult partnership approach to enhancing the child welfare system in Vermont.

Seeking a friendly, organized and self-motivated individual passionate about the well-being of Vermont youth. Applicants with lived experience in foster care or adoption are encouraged to apply.  Seeking a candidate with excellent relationship building skills who has the ability to communicate on a regular basis with youth, case managers and community partners.

The YDP Advocacy Coordinator will serve as a liaison between youth, YDP, and the Department for Children and Families (DCF) – Family Services Division.  Primary elements of this role include understanding the way the child welfare system works (including relevant policy and legislation), building relationships with stakeholders (adult and youth alike), and leveraging that understanding and those relationships in order to build meaningful and effective leadership and advocacy opportunities for youth.

YDP is a statewide initiative that serves over 450 youth annually and spans across all 12 DCF districts. YDP’s mission is to ensure that youth with foster care experience enter adulthood with the necessary support to build productive and fulfilling lives. Using a strengths-based and youth-driven approach, the program promotes well-being across the following domains: housing, education, employment, social connections, transportation, health, enrichment and basic needs. YDP also offers participating youth access to leadership, advocacy and training opportunities in order to ensure that the foster care system is informed by and responsive to the youth who are served by it.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities:

Managing the operations of the Youth Advisory Board (YAB), which will include:

  1. Planning and facilitating regular meetings, in partnership with youth leaders.
  2. Executing strategic plans for optimum recruitment, member engagement, and efficacy.
  3. Providing direct training to youth and adult supporters on topics such as Strategic Sharing, preparing to speak on panels, navigating systems, leadership, professionalism, and more.
  4. Promoting capacity-building opportunities for youth and young adults.
  5. Communicating YAB updates to the field, and building a network to support the youth-adult partnership model of the YAB.
  6. Ensuring collaboration between the YAB, the YDP network, and DCF leadership.
  • Collecting and analyzing youth data associated with recruitment for and participation in advocacy and leadership events.
  • Planning YDP’s annual youth conference.
  • Planning and facilitating ongoing advocacy events such as youth panels for DCF and foster parents/ caregivers.
  • Continuously evaluating current leadership and advocacy opportunities and exploring new opportunities to effectively elevate youth voice, in partnership with adult supporters.
  • Run the program social media accounts.

The ideal candidate will be organized, forward-thinking, and strategic and share our team’s commitment to providing the best opportunities possible for youth who have experienced foster care.

  • Willingness to work within a youth-adult partnership model
  • Ability to consider issues from multiple perspectives, namely those of youth and child welfare professionals
  • Capacity to understand the child welfare system (including policies, legislation, culture) and how it impacts youth
  • Ability to interpret complex elements of a bureaucratic system and translate them to youth
  • Strength in communicating and collaborating with both youth and adults
  • Ability to identify system strengths and weaknesses, and leverage relationships in order to promote positive changes
  • Capacity to plan events and manage multiple projects simultaneously
  • Bachelor’s degree in human services-related field
  • Skilled with use of Microsoft Office and Google Suite
  • Experience working with youth and young adults (ages 14-23) (preferred)
  • A valid driver’s license with a clean driving record and personal vehicle (required)
  • Must have the visual acuity to perform activity such as: preparing and analyzing data; viewing a computer monitor; extensive reading.
  • Must have the mobility to move short distances and drive a vehicle to retrieve lightweight materials and attend in-person meetings, as needed.
  • The ability to manage some in-state travel and attendance at local and/or national training conferences is possible.

Program Culture and Working Environment
This position has the opportunity to be in person, remote or hybrid. In person orientation is required. The statewide administrative offices for YDP are housed at Elevate Youth Services in Barre, VT. The YDP Advocacy Coordinator shares an open concept office space. The atmosphere is professional casual. Individual supervision is provided at least once per week.

EYS provides direct services to youth and families in Washington County, as well as administration of several statewide programs. Its mission is to promote safety, competence, and confidence as youth create their path through adolescence and into adulthood. All EYS employees attend a staff meeting once a month, as well as other staff development events throughout the year.

This position is being offered at 100% FTE based on a 37.5 hour work-week.
Salary Range:  37,000-45,000


Vacation Allowance….15 days                                                Personal Days….3 days
Holidays….12 days
Sick Leave….10 days
Health Insurance….Yes
Dental/Optical….Not available at this time
Long Term Disability….Yes
Life Insurance….Yes

• Background check required

• Position open until filled

• Elevate Youth Services is an EOE

Please submit a cover letter, resume, and three references to apply.


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