The San Luis Valley is home to three of the four poorest counties in Colorado. Valley wide, the isolation, poverty, geographic expanse, and limited economic opportunities give way to great human need. As a result, financial, housing, and food insecurity are major problems in the region. The Rural Alliance for Dignity AmeriCorps program will provide emergency services to those who are hungry, homeless, or on the verge of becoming homeless, as well as engage the community in the cause through event planning, and volunteer recruitment and management. AmeriCorps members will serve over 700 homeless individuals, stabilize more than 2,000 individuals on the brink of homelessness, and provide emergency food services to more than 11,000 food-insecure individuals. The Community Engagement Coordinator’s main function is to create and foster relationships and continue to educate others about La Puente and the purpose that it serves. Without this position, Community Education would not be able to put on community events, recruit volunteers, or host work groups.
II. Description of Duties:
The purpose of the Volunteer Coordinator is to build the capacity of La Puente to lower the rate of homelessness in the San Luis Valley by increasing education, soliciting community involvement, and utilizing volunteers to address the needs of those living in poverty. The Volunteer Coordinators accomplish this through implementing community events, presentations, and work groups.
Responsibilities include but are not limited to:
- Coordinate community events to raise community awareness and recruit volunteers
- Coordinate fundraisers for specific projects/services (food for the food bank, furniture for Adelante Houses, etc.)
- Document events through photography
- Make community presentations about the mission and service of La Puente and how to be involved
- Produce story and photo journals, and other publications to share the mission of La Puente
- Send out public service announcements about La Puente volunteer and partnership opportunities
- Find new and creative ways to coordinate events and volunteer opportunities
- Keep contact with volunteers
- Promote events on social media sites
- Recruit, coordinate, plan, and facilitate transportation and lodging for all volunteer workgroups
- Contact workgroup leaders to discuss all the details of their trip prior to their arrival
- Work with the other Volunteer Coordinators and site supervisors to schedule activities and projects for the volunteer workgroups
- Secure needed supplies and resources for workgroup projects
- Give the volunteer workgroups a tour of all the La Puente programs
- Guide the volunteer workgroups with their projects during their time here
- Lead workgroups in experiential learning activities (for example the homeless simulation) to increase their knowledge of rural homelessness, hunger, and poverty
- Facilitate discussion with the workgroups about their experience here
- Write and distribute thank you cards for all work groups
- Bachelor’s degree, or a high school diploma (or its equivalent), and 6 months of qualifying experience.
- Commitment to the missions of Volunteer Coordination and Community Education program
- Experience and/or interest in education
- Knowledge and interest in serving with diverse groups of people.
- Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
- Ability to fulfill tasks independently.
- Must pass a driving record screening
- Able to follow directions and manage time appropriately with deadlines in mind.
V. Physical, Emotional, and Intellectual Demands
- Able to work in a woodlot (lift wood, handle machinery, load trucks, drive truck with trailer)
- Able to lift at least 50 lbs.
- Competent driver
- Excellent communication skills
- Able to draw boundaries between yourself and clients
- Must be able to take constructive criticism
- Must be comfortable with InDesign, Photoshop, Microsoft and Google Suite
- Excellent multitasking and organizational skills
- Must be adaptable
- Must be comfortable with public speaking