Lead Community Organizer

Student Clinic for Immigrant Justice

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About the job


The Student Clinic for Immigrant Justice (SCIJ) is seeking a Lead Community Organizer to lead SCIJ’s community organizing efforts and support the organization’s development. The Lead Community Organizer will work closely with SCIJ’s Campus Organizers to carry out grassroots, base-building that develops student and constituent leadership and supports them in creating and carrying out campaigns for local change. In addition, the Lead Community Organizer will support the development of SCIJ by working closely with the Executive Director to raise the funds needed to support SCIJ’s mission.

SCIJ’s community organizing theory of change revolves around the belief that through relationships we can build the power needed to change the systems that matter most to us and our communities. Grounded in an abolitionist framework and in collaboration with Campus Organizers, the Lead Community Organizer will do this by engaging students and constituents in regular meetings to identify issues impacting the local immigrant community, facilitating workshops on leadership and political education, developing organizing campaigns, and carrying out these campaigns. In addition, together with the members and the full SCIJ team, the Lead Community Organizer will represent the communities in which SCIJ operates in local, regional, and statewide efforts to advance immigrant justice and will build on strategies of engagement, base building, political education, and leadership development. 80-90% of this position’s time will be spent on these responsibilities.

Power-building comes from organizing people and organizing wealth. Along with the Lead Community Organizer’s role in organizing people, this position will also work closely with the Executive Director to raise the money needed to support our mission. Grounded in values of interdependence and abundance, the Lead Community Organizer will collaborate with the Executive Director to manage and cultivate relationships with funders and partners, write and manage grants, develop content for external messaging in support of the fundraising strategy, and organize fundraising events. 10-20% of the position’s time will be spent on these responsibilities.

The Lead Community Organizer will be joining SCIJ at a pivotal moment as SCIJ seeks to build on the momentum of its successful first two years and expand to new communities. Having already established programs at Worcester State University and Brown University where SCIJ trained 49 students, provided pro bono representation to 36 asylum seekers, and launched two organizing campaigns, the Lead Community Organizer will play a key role in leading SCIJ’s organizing efforts while also growing SCIJ’s vision nationally.

Salary & Benefits

The Lead Community Organizer will be paid an annual salary of $50,000-$62,000 (commensurate with experience) plus benefits including:

  1. Health Insurance with Tufts (100% paid by SCIJ)
  2. Dental Insurance with Tufts (100% paid by SCIJ)
  3. Paid Family and Medical Leave
  4. Professional Development Assistance
  5. Travel reimbursement
  6. 16 days of paid time off per year, 10 paid days off for federal holidays, and 1 paid day off to be used within 14 days of your birthday each year
  7. 80 hours of paid sick time

This position will require 40 hours of work per week and generally involve working Monday through Friday, with occasional evening and weekend responsibilities as relevant. The position will involve both remote and in-person work. SCIJ anticipates that over half of your workweek will be remote, though this may change with COVID fluctuations and changes in organizing strategy. Applicants must have access to a car or other mode of transportation to travel to Worcester, MA, Providence, RI, Boston, MA, and (potentially) Hartford, CT.

With the impacts of the US’s punitive immigration system felt most harshly by Latinx, Black, African, and Middle Eastern immigrants, especially LGBTQ+, gender-minority, working-class, and disabled immigrants, SCIJ is committed to creating a community within its staff, students, board, and volunteers that reflect this diversity.

Job Responsibilities

  • COMMUNITY ORGANIZING (all in collaboration with Campus Organizers)
  • Maintaining and updating SCIJ’s long-term organizing vision
  • Conducting 1-on-1 meetings per week with students, community members, and community organizations to further SCIJ’s community organizing vision
  • Turn relational meetings into tangible action and have the ability to turn out people as a result of person-to-person organizing
  • Identify, recruit, develop, and support a community of organizing teams comprised of SCIJ student leaders and non-student community members to engage in SCIJ’s organizing work
  • Maintaining and developing content for and preparing and training facilitators to lead SCIJ’s community organizing workshops
  • Co-developing campaign strategies with students and local immigrant communities
  • Supporting the outreach, research, and strategic planning needed to wage and win campaigns such as by organizing large community action meetings, non-violent actions, meeting with public officials
  • Writing emails, making calls, and submitting (and/or providing) testimony in support of bills and issues supported by SCIJ
  • Attending, supporting, and/or participating in actions and events in support of immigrant justice
  • Immigration Ecosystem
  • Supporting the Campus Organizer in researching, identifying, setting up conversations with, and meeting with community organizations in MA, RI, and CT to develop relationships
  • Maintaining, developing, and expanding SCIJ’s community partnerships with local organizations, national coalitions, and strategic partners
  • Supporting Campus Organizers in representing SCIJ at local, regional, state, and national coalition meetings
  • Staying up-to-date with ongoing immigrant justice campaigns, including signing up for and following email lists maintained by groups like Welcome with Dignity.
  • Reviewing and, if applicable, redesigning and implementing the community organizing portion of SCIJ’s training program, including:
  • Identifying and writing learning goals related to community organizing
  • Researching, designing, and writing content and PowerPoint presentations for SCIJ’s training program related to community organizing
  • Identifying questions, writing, administering, and grading SCIJ’s final exam related to community organizing
  • Collaborating with SCIJ staff in researching, identifying, recruiting, and coordinating guest speakers related to community organizing
  • Teaching training sessions on community organizing
  • Collaborating with the Program Coordinator in developing opportunities such as workshops and webinars with other organizations that align with the interests of students and the values of SCIJ
  • Along with the Program Coordinator and Executive Director, supporting students when media (podcasts, newspaper interviews, etc.) opportunities arise by helping students craft their story of self, understand how to share SCIJ’s mission, and equip themselves with the tools needed when discussing intense and potentially emotionally triggering topics
  • When relevant, collaborating with the Program Coordinator to engage SCIJ alumni in community organizing efforts
  • DEVELOPMENT (all in collaboration with the Executive Director; dependent on candidate’s background and interests)
  • Designing and implementing a successful fundraising program to significantly increase fundraising support for SCIJ
  • Grant Writing & Management
  • Researching, identifying, and applying to grants
  • Writing and submitting reports to foundations
  • Strategize around yearly funding alignment, upgrades from current donors, and increasing multi-year grants.
  • Individual Giving
  • Building and sustaining a pipeline of prospective funders by researching and identifying new prospective individual, foundation, and corporate giving opportunities.
  • Meeting with prospective funders to cultivate, solicit and steward relationships as needed.
  • Help steward donor portfolio for gifts under $1,000, including solicitation and thank you communications by email and phone
  • Developing donor materials including a donor packet, graphics for SCIJ’s website, thank you letters and emails, and other content that inspire giving to SCIJ’s mission
  • Designing and maintaining SCIJ’s merchandise on its website
  • Writing, printing, and mailing thank you letters to donors
  • Events
  • Planning fundraising events
  • Contacting potential attendees through Constant Contact and individual forms of outreach to turn out attendance to fundraising events
  • Developing content for the events such as PowerPoints, videos, pictures, etc.
  • Creating Facebook events and other ways for people to RSVP

Qualifications and Skills

SCIJ is looking for a Lead Community Organizer with lived experiences in immigrant communities, multilingual (Spanish, Haitian Creole, and/or Portuguese) language skills, and a passion for immigrant justice. Qualifications and skills include:

  • 2-3 years of direct community organizing experience
  • (Ideal, but not Required): Experience in nonprofit development, such as with grant writing, prospecting donors, solicitation, fundraising events and outreach, or development management
  • Experience working in grassroots community groups
  • Flexibility to work weeknights and weekends depending on projects and events
  • Strong preference for candidates who have experience in organizing, law, and/or education
  • Leadership and coordination experience and skills
  • Deeply self-motivated
  • Growth mindset and a commitment to reflective practice
  • Proven track record of exceptional relationship-building both internally and externally.

How to Apply

Please visit https://scijimmigration.org/jobs for instructions on how to apply.

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