Community Engagement Officer — Urban Edge
Urban Edge is a nonprofit community development organization located in Boston with a mission dedicated to strengthening communities and families. Together, we build affordable housing and vibrant, prosperous neighborhoods. We focus on economic justice through financial counseling, wealth building through homeownership education, anti-displacement through foreclosure prevention, and resident support services as we construct more affordable housing. Located where Boston’s Latin Quarter meets its historic African-American neighborhood at the crossroads of Jamaica Plain and Roxbury in Jackson Square, our goal is to foster diverse urban neighborhoods of choice populated by resilient families and sustained by community relationships.
In 1974, redlining, real estate speculation, and displacement of low-income families were tearing at the fabric of Boston communities. The determined resident opposition had succeeded in halting the extension of I-95 through the City, but the landscape sustained the scars of cleared land. That’s when community leaders came together and founded our agency to rebuild our neighborhood on the “urban edge.” To date, we have developed nearly
1,500 units of affordable housing and maintain a portfolio of 1,369 units. Urban Edge’s budget for CY22 is approximately $5.3M, and we currently employ a staff of 30.
The Community Engagement Officer is an outgoing, solution-oriented professional committed to maximizing stable tenancies, increasing the economic resiliency of families, and providing community leadership and advocacy opportunities for residents and the community. The Community Engagement Officer works closely with neighborhood organizations and resident leaders to identify opportunities for facilitated leadership development training and advocacy efforts. He/she will organize, lead and facilitate meetings to support the needs of the resident leaders and the neighborhood organizations. The Community Engagement Officer will work closely with human service agencies that provide assistance around elder services, job placements, domestic violence prevention, home health aide, and after-school programs. He/she acts as a liaison between residents and property management and works to increase opportunities for residents to enhance their income and assets, as well as to connect residents to health & wellness, and educational opportunities. This person focuses on connecting residents to social service providers, increasing the income of families, and supporting neighborhood-led activities and initiatives. The Community Engagement Officer represents the organization to a variety of stakeholders, including residents, neighborhood organizations, and city and state agencies.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
• Identify and lead community advocacy efforts that address the needs of the core neighborhood. This could include but is not limited to public safety, affordable housing, civic engagement and other issues.
• Work with Community Engagement staff to develop a model for community leadership development that draws from Urban Edge’s experience with resident leadership development.
• Lead and implement leadership development initiatives and activities intended to increase the success of meaningful resident engagement.
• Identify leadership development opportunities for current and future resident leaders in the Urban Edge portfolio, and the larger community.
• Lead and facilitate monthly and/or quarterly meetings with peer organizations in Urban Edge’s Core Neighborhood.
• Provide one-to-one coaching and goal setting with residents, specifically around goals related to promoting economic mobility, including housing, budgeting, education, career and more. This will also include collaboration with the property management company to carry out some these initiatives.
• Identify and cultivate relationships with organizations that provide resources to families living in affordable housing.
• Design and execute effective communication strategies to inform residents of community events and other relevant information.
• Collect all required community engagement information and input them into appropriate databases.
• Assist in report writing for community engagement activities and initiatives.
• Represent Urban Edge at resident, neighborhood, and City and State-wide meetings and initiatives.
• Work closely with property management and other staff to resolve resident issues that destabilize tenancy. This includes Urban Edge’s work with property management around resident receivables across the portfolio.
• Work with the Real Estate team and other Urban Edge teams as appropriate to ensure that residents of Urban Edge’s service area are engaged and participating in the organization’s work and decision-making.
• Collaborate with other teams within the organization in the planning/implementation of community events and media relations for Community Engagement.
• Attend community events/celebrations and Urban Edge events/meetings as needed (events sometimes occur during nights and/or weekends).
• Perform other duties as assigned.
Minimum Required Experience, Education, and Background:
• At least 2-3 years’ experience in resident resource coordination, community organizing, community planning, and/or community relations.
• Strong Facilitation skills.
• Strong customer service orientation, communication, and interpersonal skills.
• Strong client management skills.
• Strong organizational skills as well as a demonstrated ability to handle a variety of tasks simultaneously, and in logical sequence. Ability to show accuracy, timeliness, adaptability to changing circumstances and follow-up on tasks.
• Ability to work with and understand people of all ethnic backgrounds; And, to understand the challenges of residents living within affordable housing; or those of low income.
• Ability to work independently and to make judgments within the scope of the job.
• Proficiency in Microsoft Office and utilizing database software (e.g., Salesforce).
Additional Preferred Experience:
• Bachelor’s degree or equivalent combination of education and experience.
• Bi-Lingual (Spanish fluency a plus)
• Please forward your resume and cover letter to firstname.lastname@example.org
• Urban Edge offers a competitive salary commensurate with experience and qualifications, plus generous benefits.
Urban Edge seeks a diverse pool of candidates. We are committed to a policy of equal employment opportunity without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, disability, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, or age.