Hand to Hold is a national non-profit providing NICU family support. We are seeking a part-time Family Support Specialist to fulfill our contractual agreement with St. David’s Women’s Center of Texas in Austin. This position provides peer psycho-social support and education for NICU families in partnership with hospital staff. Leaning on their own personal experience and specific peer support training, the Family Support Specialist is responsible for supporting NICU families in both community and hospital settings either one-on-one or in a group. The Family Support Specialist’s primary responsibilities include visiting families one-on-one, facilitating weekly support groups, distributing resources, and hosting holiday events, all with a goal to reduce the negative impact of a NICU stay and ensure the best outcome for the entire family. There are also essential data entry and reporting requirements to supervisors and hospital staff about the interactions with families.
The Family Support Specialist serves as the first, and sometimes only, representation within the hospital and will serve as Hand to Hold’s primary representative at St. David’s Women’s Center of Texas for NICU staff and NICU families. This care provider must demonstrate an empathetic personality combined with a dynamic professional attitude to convey Hand to Hold’s mission and values on behalf of the entire organization.
The Family Support Specialist reports to the Hospital Ambassador Program Manager, under the general direction of the Program Director. Personal experience with Hand to Hold’s mission is required.
Hospital Ambassador Program
- Provides support and encouragement to families during their antepartum and/or NICU stay.
- Identifies and provides timely and effective peer psycho-social support and interventions for families either directly or through referrals.
- Disburses Hand to Hold resources and NICU Milestone beads to parents and families.
- Facilitates in-person support groups using Hand to Hold’s custom support group curriculum.
- Helps families identify and access medical and therapeutic services in their community.
- Provides bereavement support for families who have experienced a loss in the NICU.
- Serves as liaison between Hand to Hold and hospital NICU staff.
- Tracks and reports program data within program timelines to collect demographic information and to measure the impact, satisfaction, and overall effectiveness of each program component.
Virtual Support Groups
- Facilitates virtual support groups using Hand to Hold’s custom support group curriculum through Zoom or other similar platforms.
- Plans and prepares for each virtual support group.
- Tracks and reports program data within program timelines to collect demographic information and measure impact, satisfaction, and overall effectiveness of the groups.
- Meeting with families occasionally during evening or weekend hours.
- Contributes to Hand to Hold’s educational content, training, manuals, curricula, and other writing projects as needed.
- Participates facilitates and/or assists at Hand to Hold events as required.
- Helps to recruit volunteers and peer mentors.
- Submits weekly and monthly reports – timesheets, expense reports – in a timely fashion.
- Perform other duties as may be assigned by the Hospital Ambassador Program Manager and/or Program Director.
- Bachelor’s degree or equivalent professional work experience required.
- Personal experience with a child or loved one in the NICU is required.
- Certification in peer support by the State of Texas, or willingness to complete certification within the first 90 days.
- Awareness of mental health challenges NICU parents face and willingness to complete appropriate training in this area, as well as ongoing education on racial and ethnic disparities, trauma-informed care, and other relevant instruction, both online and in person.
- Ability to provide culturally competent support and education in English to diverse groups of people, including Hispanic/Latinx, subcontinent Asian, Asian and Black families. Bilingual in English and Spanish is preferred.
- Work or internship experience in health care, early childhood intervention, or maternal health care programs.
- Experience working with children and families, including those with disabilities.
- Willingness to learn and apply best practices in health literacy and medical education.
- Willingness to learn and abide by best practices in peer support.
- Ability to work both independently and on teams.
- Ability to think proactively, address problems creatively, and take initiative appropriately.
- Ability to maintain confidentiality and professionalism as an ambassador for the organization.
- Demonstrated excellence in organizational, written, and verbal communication skills.
Report to the Hospital Ambassador Program Manager with general oversight from the Program Director
- Open to applicants in the Austin, Texas metropolitan area.
- Part-time Non-exempt hourly position.
- Estimated at 20 – 25 hours per week.
- Compensation: $20 - $21/hour depending on skills and experience.
- Hand to Hold is not currently able to offer part-time employee health insurance or benefits.
- Paid time off offered plus two office Holidays (Thanksgiving and Christmas Day) after the employee introductory period.
- Must be physically able to reach second-floor office space by stairs (no elevator access)
- Substantial movements (motion) of the wrist, hands, and/or fingers in a repetitive manner.
- Must be able to tolerate standing or walking for 95% of the hospital shift and occasionally lifting/carrying 10-25 pounds.
- Use telephone and email to communicate, approximately 2-4 hours per day.
- Must be able to see clearly with or without corrected vision.
- Manual dexterity sufficient to reach/handle items.
- Bending, stooping, and reaching several times throughout a shift.
To apply, send a resume and cover letter to firstname.lastname@example.org.