KABOOM! is the national nonprofit committed to ensuring that every kid, in every community, has an amazing place to play. Our mission is to end playspace inequity – the reality that playspaces are not available to every child, especially in communities of color. We unite with communities to build kid-designed playspaces that can spark joy and foster a sense of belonging for the kids who are often denied opportunities to thrive.
The Programs Team is looking for a passionate, organized, and racial equity-focused individual to lead community-based projects and engagement strategies in disinvested communities. This position will work within a cross-functional team and report to the Associate Director of Community Engagement within the Programs Department.
Duties and Responsibilities:
Partner Outreach and Communication
- Research geography-specific demographic, income, and racial data to identify areas of greatest need and create outreach strategies to target these areas
- Understand and communicate KABOOM!’s mission, values, and programs to external groups including municipal agencies, community-based nonprofits, schools, and corporate and foundation funding partners
- Build relationships with municipalities and other non-profits
- Review applications from potential partners for KABOOM! playspace project opportunities
- Partner with organizations through the playspace screening process, ensuring the potential project is a fit for Community Partner, Funding Partner, and KABOOM!
- Advocate internally and externally for equitable community outcomes by clearly communicating challenges and solutions
- Confirm site viability by identifying and vetting on-site logistics plans
- Receive, review, and finalize necessary paperwork for grant consideration, including landownership documents and contracts
- Develop and execute detailed project plans to monitor and track progress across multiple projects and community partner organizations at one time
- Provide comprehensive project updates for internal and external partners including Funding Partners
Community Asset Mapping and Activation
- Partner with local organizations to create customized, inclusive community engagement strategies; foster strong connections between project partners
- Create tools to support community member’s recruitment and inclusion efforts such as project websites, surveys, and promotional materials
- Organize and facilitate community meetings to identify and define assets, opportunities, goals, and outcomes within a play space project
- Use gathered community information to help co-create project outcomes and parameters
- Lead weekly planning calls to establish progress towards community-determined goals and prepare for build-week events
- Support community partners in developing post-build programming and long-term site maintenance
- Work alongside Community Build Managers on event planning for Build Week, securing and communicating a plan for items such as food, volunteer recruitment, child supervision, and various other event logistics.
- Track and report project timelines and tasks
- Document expense projections and actuals and reconcile variance reports in collaboration with the Finance team
- Plan and facilitate design workshops to include gardens, native plantings, and outdoor learning project elements complementary to the playspace; Design and create the outdoor learning area/garden plan to include the materials list, planting timeline, and volunteer roles.*
Departmental and Organizational Responsibilities
- Participate in cross-department work groups as a representative for the Programs team
- Other duties as assigned
Essential Job Functions
“Ability to maintain acceptable standards of conduct and work cooperatively as an effective team member of a diverse and inclusive workforce. Communicates with others, sits or moves about the office to coordinate work, and uses a computer as well as other office equipment as needed. In addition, must be able to travel independently, leading events with extended hours of moving about in various weather conditions and in some circumstances, able to lift or move objects unassisted up to 30 pounds with the ability to operate basic hand tools.”
Education and Experience Required
- Minimum of four years of work experience in project management, community organizing, and/or direct community engagement working with racially diverse populations.
- Leading and completing complex, long-term, fast-moving projects from beginning to end
- Partnering with communities to take action and create change
- Organizing others and yourself against immediate and long-term timelines
- Thinking strategically and creatively to solve challenges, changing timelines, and ambiguity
- Facilitating group discussion to identify and establish progress towards community-defined project outcomes.
- Writing and communicating clearly and persuasively to ensure internal and external audiences are inspired and informed
- Coaching communities using asset-based community development and participatory design methods
- Understanding the root causes of racial inequities within systems
- Building trusting relationships across lines of difference
- Discussing issues of structural and institutional racism
- Experience volunteering, designing, and/or working with school or community gardens or outdoor natural learning environments for kids is preferred. Background in landscape architecture is a plus.*
Individual has the ability and willingness to build relationships across differences and discuss issues of structural and institutional racism.
- 8-12 Design Days annually
- On occasion, for high-profile or large-scale projects or relationship management purposes, the Community Engagement Manager may be expected to attend Build Week.
Salary & Benefits
We take care of our employees. The following are some of the perks and benefits:
Medical, Dental, and Vision insurance
Flexible Spending Account and Health Savings Account
Dependent care Flexible Spending Account
Education Reimbursement & Personal Development Stipend
Bethesda, Maryland - USA (Hybrid)
Equal Opportunity Statement
Building an inclusive, high-performing team that is diverse across lines of personal identity is integral to our success and we are proud to be an equal-opportunity employer.
This means we do not discriminate against any job applicant or employee because of their race, ethnicity, color, religion, national origin, sex, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, age, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws. This applies to all terms and conditions of employment.
We actively strive and evolve to develop and maintain workspaces that are fully inclusive. We encourage candidates from underrepresented groups to apply.