Job Title: Program Director – Self-Sufficiency Center
Classification: Full-Time Salaried, Exempt
Reports to: Executive Director
Critical Communication with: Executive Director, Self-Sufficiency Coaches, Direct Services Coach
Monroe County United Ministries (MCUM) creates lasting solutions to economic, educational and social injustice in our community through quality services, collaboration and innovation. Our vision is to eliminate generational poverty in Monroe County.
For more information about Monroe County United Ministries:
General Description/Scope of Work
MCUM’s Self-Sufficiency Center (SSC) is a community resource center that operates in solidarity with low-income clients to provide basic resources to families in need while helping them set and achieve their own goals, like finding stable and safe housing; securing well-paying jobs; paying off debts; accessing more education; and/or learning new life skills. The SSC honors clients’ autonomy by offering an assortment of self-selected services, including both short-term resources and long-term programs.
The SSC Program Director supervises as many as 6 program staff and interns, including two Self-Sufficiency Coaches and a Direct Services Coach. The Program Director manages the day-to-day operation of the SSC, including direct resource provision [groceries from MCUM’s client-choice food pantry; cleaning and hygiene products; clothing vouchers to a local thrift shop; and financial support for rent or utility bills in arrears] and the center’s “Your Path” program – a one-on-one mentorship program that helps low-income families set and achieve goals to navigate their way out of poverty.
“Your Path” is research-based and informed by neuroscience. The program is designed to cultivate a healthier sense of self [identity, self-efficacy, motivation] and develop self-regulation skills [the ability to focus on and solve problems, control impulses, work toward goals, and juggle priorities] to combat poverty and its effects [stress, trauma, scarcity, etc.]. SSC coaches meet regularly with “Your Path” participants to brainstorm action steps with respect to their goals, offer affirmations, track goal progress, set deadlines, and hold participants accountable to themselves and their aspirations. The SSC Program Director provides supervision, training, and support to MCUM’s coaches to better develop their coaching skills and improve “Your Path” outcomes.
The SSC Program Director also administers other components of the SSC, such as the Individual Development Accounts (IDA) program, Microfinance Loan program, and Financial Assistance program. These programs involve transfer of cash benefits and therefore merit directorial oversight.
Key tasks include, but are not limited to:
Manage all SSC programs, including direct services, coaching services, and financial services – Direct all day-to-day operations on-site, including resource provision, financial assistance, and personnel management. Be available to support all staff members and program volunteers daily.
Provide ongoing supervision, training, and support for SSC coaches – Design and host bi-weekly trainings to help coaches deliberately strengthen skills and improve knowledge of local resources. Build camaraderie by providing coach support as needed. Foster a spirit of teamwork and respect between coaches and participants; elevate all team members and participants to be your peers.
Build intentional partnerships with other local resource providers and community resources – Establish new partnerships (and reinforce existing ones) between MCUM and other social service providers to offer more holistic services to SSC clients and allow for more insightful and effective referrals. Seek, build, and maintain service-based partnerships with other community resources, such as Indiana University, local congregations (such as the MCUM-sponsored Wednesday Food Pantry at First United Methodist Church), local businesses, and more.
Further develop and implement the “Your Path” program – Expand and progress the “Your Path” program in response to new research, best practices, and coach and participant feedback. Revisit existing tools regularly and develop new tools as needed to improve program outcomes and participant/coach experiences. Continue to incorporate “Motivational Interviewing” into all elements of the program. Use the work of Economic Mobility Pathways as the foundation of the program.
Regularly review all program operations to move practices towards efficiency, effectiveness, and a representation of agency values – Continually assess program activities from the perspectives of all stakeholders to streamline and improve SSC activities for staff and clients, alike. Think critically about industry best practices while embracing innovation through the empowerment model. Be especially considerate of people’s experiences as service providers and service recipients, and mitigate the power dynamic inherent in that relationship to achieve equity and build trust.
Administer the agency’s Individual Development Accounts and Microloan programs – Work directly with program participants, funding partners, and the development team to ensure all financial programs run smoothly. This includes oversight, execution, and reporting to stakeholders.
The SSC Program Director communicates regularly with the Executive Director, Self-Sufficiency Coaches, Direct Services Coach, and with the clients of MCUM’s Self-Sufficiency Center, including participants in the “Your Path” program. All program staff members function as a team to support one another and work in solidarity with clients to help them access resources and/or set and achieve their unique goals. The Program Director acts as both manager and mentor, supervisor and supporter. Relationships with all staff members and clients are based in teamwork, empowerment, and co-investment, as well as dignity and respect. The Program Director also serves as the public face of the SSC for tours, presentations, and other speaking engagements for community partners.
The foundation of the SSC is teamwork, as opposed to a power dynamic where the program participant is below the staff. MCUM’s coaches encourage participants to empower themselves and support participants’ autonomy; the Program Director should model this approach with staff. To this end, the Program Director is to be supportive of coaches without doing for and should provide coaches the opportunity to be self-directed, seek creative solutions, and offer programmatic input. The Program Director should also ensure that coaches are engaging in co-investment – matching their level of engagement with the level each participant has invested. This can help avoid burnout and secondary trauma, whereby staff take on participants’ stress or over-identify with participants who are long-time partners. The Program Director should be attentive to coaches’ health/wellness and promote self-care.
The Program Director is afforded a private office on-site in which to work. MCUM provides an office phone, agency e-mail and desktop computer with access to a shared agency server that contains client databases, coaching tools and other necessary materials. As such, personal computers are not permitted to be used on-site and remote work is sensible only in select circumstances. The Program Director will frequently have meetings off-site with community partners and will occasionally have commitments outside of regular business hours (M-F. 9-5). Coaches are encouraged to seek and inquire about off-site trainings relevant to their work and professional development, including site visits to other local service agencies; the Program Director should be as supportive as is reasonable with respect to these opportunities.
Orientation & Training
The SSC Program Director will receive a thorough agency orientation, as well as program and services overviews and one-on-one training with relevant program staff. Introductory coaching materials and tools are also provided during onboarding, including myriad resources regarding “Your Path.”
Whenever possible, new Program Directors will be trained by outgoing Program Directors for a period of two or more weeks. Ongoing training is available from other agency staff members, including the Executive Director, Office Manager, Self-Sufficiency Coaches and Direct Services Coach.
The SSC Program Director works full-time, 40-hour work weeks and should expect to keep a regular weekly schedule barring after-hours commitments. As this position is salaried, it is exempt from overtime, though all MCUM employees are encouraged to maintain the work-life balance made possible by a 40-hour work week. Afternoon availability is essential to help uphold the Self-Sufficiency Center’s “walk-in” hours (12 – 5 p.m. on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays, 12 – 7 p.m. on Tuesdays). The SSC Program Director may be required to be present at FUMC’s Wednesday Food Pantry, which operates weekly from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. in downtown Bloomington.
Be a driver of innovation at a learning organization that welcomes new ideas and is always seeking to improve;
Unite Bloomington’s network of non-profits through partnerships and collaborations, offering local families much-needed holistic services that can help pull them out of poverty;
Gain direct experience designing and providing services to a diverse client base, including disadvantaged and marginalized individuals and families;
Engage in the design and execution of an innovative, research-based and science-informed program demonstrated to help low-income families navigate their way from poverty;
Experience personal growth and professional development to improve your own mentorship/coaching skills and knowledge of the real-world systems we all must navigate;
Build peer and client relationships with foundations in teamwork and co-investment;
Learn more about our shared community’s needs and social justice issues like poverty, family services, housing, transportation, healthcare, employment, and more;
Benefits package includes PTO, Sick leave, an optional 401(k) plan, as well as subsidized health insurance (including optional dental and vision).