Nature and scope
The YMCA Summer Work Student Exchange is a national exchange program coordinated by the YMCA and funded by the Department of Canadian Heritage. For six weeks over the summer, the exchange takes 16- and 17-year-old youth (from Canada) to another province where they stay with a local host, hold a paid job, and practice their second official language. The youth also participate in weekly program activities organized by the Local Coordinator in their new community.
Local Coordinators provide leadership and bring the exchange to life in their local community. First, they will widely promote the program to youth and community organizations in order to recruit young people to participate, while also securing host and job placements for them (March-April). They also interview, select and prepare the outbound youth participants for this experience (May-June). Finally, they plan and deliver a full program of activities during the exchange, and support the inbound youth participants by helping them navigate change and address conflicts as they arise (July-August). Local Coordinators will be positive adult mentors for the youth with an interest in fostering strong relationships and opportunities for learning.
Local Coordinators must be full-time post-secondary students. Successful candidates will have had previous experience working with youth and/or experiential education programs, possess strong communication, customer service and organizational skills, and be highly reliable individuals. They will have insight into Canada’s diversity and value an active approach to social inclusion.
- Recruit youth to participate in the exchange by promoting the program in schools, community groups, drop-ins, and other venues. Recruits hosts and employment partners so that appropriate placements are available for all inbound participants.
- Interviews and selects youth participants and families/hosts, based on predetermined criteria, with assistance from a Support Coordinator and final approval by a Regional Coordinator; provides pre-departure information and support.
- Plans local activities aligned with program objectives, with and for the youth participants, manages the activity budget.
- Builds positive relationships with youth exchange participants, host families, employers, and other local community partners; visits program sites (job placements and host homes) at least twice during the exchange, or more frequently if required.
- Responds to emergencies as they arise. As such, must be accessible to the youth, hosts, Support Coordinator and Regional Coordinator at all times during the exchange, except for designated days off.
- Supports participants’ travel, by either: chaperoning participants to their host or home communities, at the start and end of the program; or providing logistical support at departure points (train station, airport).
- Writes a comprehensive report at the end of the summer summarizing the program’s results.
- Fulfills administrative tasks (e.g. documentation, expense claims) in a timely and efficient manner.
- Demonstrates appropriate behaviours in line with our Mission, Vision and Values as reflected in our YMCA competencies; takes a member focused approach to increase their understanding of programs offered across the Association. Represents the YMCA and the Association in a professional manner.
- Understands the legal responsibilities and moral imperative to report suspected child abuse to Child Protection Services.
- Understands the importance of the volunteer staff partnership and integrates the value of philanthropy and volunteerism in dealings with staff, volunteers and members.
- Other duties as assigned.
Two mandatory training sessions will take place. The first will occur in March and the second in late April/early May. Exact dates to be confirmed by the Regional Coordinator at the time of hiring.
Trainings are held in-person and may require travel within Canada for two to four days. All costs related to travel and training are paid for by the YMCA.
Location, Period of Employment, and Salary:
Positions are available throughout Canada. Local Coordinators must live within or close to the community to which they are assigned. Local Coordinators will work 12 hours/week from early March to April 29, increasing to 24 hours/week from April 30 to June 17, and then 37.5 hours/week (full-time) from June 18 to August 18. The starting salary is $18.65 per hour.
- Currently enrolled in a post-secondary program (full-time)
- Availability during days, evenings and weekends – Local Coordinators serve as the first point of contact for youth and families 5 days/week and must be willing to make the Local Coordinator position your primary professional commitment during the period of full-time employment
- Have internet access for the duration of employment
- Have valid driver’s licence and access to an insured vehicle (some exceptions for large urban centres); willing to provide a driver’s abstract
- Have valid Emergency First Aid/CPR certification before the start of the exchange
- Able to attend 2 mandatory paid trainings in March and in late April/early May
- Provide proof that you are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or have a valid medical or other Human Rights Code-related exemption
- Experience with and appreciation for working with youth
- Well-developed interpersonal and relationship building skills
- Excellent problem-solving and conflict resolution skills
- Excellent written and oral communication skills
- Ability to work independently, outside of an office setting, and without immediate supervision
- Ability to manage a budget and perform administrative tasks
- Commitment to working in a socially inclusive environment responding with sensitivity and personal awareness to the diverse needs of members including visible and non-visible dimensions of diversity
- The position requires the following Core Association Competencies. Advanced competence in: Effective Interpersonal Communications; Ethics and Self-management; Being Member Focused; Being Results Focused; Teamwork and Collaboration; Valuing Diversity and Social Inclusion. Fundamental competence in: Relationship Building and Partnering.
- Preference will be given to candidates able to communicate in French and English
- Facilitation skills related to leading experiential education activities
- Prior training in mental health support (e.g. MHFA, safeTALK, etc.)
- Knowledge and ability to integrate anti-racist, anti-oppressive, 2SLGBTQ-positive, critical disability, harm reduction, and strengths-based principles into practice