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Environmental Steward - 900 Hr

Host Site: City of Portland – Parks, Recreation and Facilities Department

Location: Portland, ME

Housing: Not Provided, but MCC is willing to assist the potential member in finding reasonable, local accommodations

Days and Hours of Service: 40 hours per week: may include evenings, weekends and holidays.

Host Site and Position Overview:
City of Portland Parks, Recreation and Facilities Department oversees all city parks, trails, open spaces, forestry, recreation programs, and recreational and cultural facilities within Portland. The MCC Environmental Stewards (one starting in March 2020, a second starting in April 2020) as the Crew Leaders for the inaugural year of the Portland Youth Corps (PYC). The PYC will be comprised of middle and high school aged students (13-16 years old) who will perform service projects throughout Portland’s parks and open spaces. The youth crew members receive a stipend, training, work experience, and professional mentorship. The Environmental Stewards are responsible for recruitment, daily leadership, and coordination of the day to day logistics of the program.
The stewards will gain experience serving directly with youth to complete vital conservation projects in urban settings such as tree planting, young tree maintenance, pollinator and perennial garden maintenance, trail construction, bridge and boardwalk construction, and natural playground maintenance. The MCC members will gain skills in leadership and mentorship of diverse youth populations, project management, municipal parks management, and coordinating complex logistics.

Description of Duties:
·        Recruitment and selection of up to 30 middle and high school aged youth who will take part in the Portland Youth Corps. This involves communication with school staff and community organizations and making in-person presentations to students. This also includes a high level of written and verbal communication with various program partners and school district staff.
·        Processing applications and conducting youth volunteer interviews.
·        Organizing regular weekend or afterschool service projects for crews during the school year.
·        Leading summer crews that will perform projects throughout Portland’s parks and open spaces.
·        Provide day to day leadership, coordination, mentorship and problem solving.
·        Coordinating with various Parks, Rec and Facilities staff and partner organizations to plan and implement projects, including arranging for materials, tools, food, transportation, and other logistics.
·        Projects include: tree planting, natural playground maintenance, trail maintenance, trail bridge construction, invasive species control, native plantings and maintenance, general park cleanup.
·        Leading overnight recreation-based trips at the end of each 2-3 week hitch. Potential trips include backpacking, day hiking, canoeing, and white water rafting.
·        Responsibility for the day to day safety and well-being of the program members. Creating a positive environment that is productive and welcoming for students of all backgrounds.
·        Recording and tracking of volunteer program records: applications, emails, rosters, etc.

Essential Functions:
·        Provide positive and inclusive leadership and role-modeling to middle and high school aged crew members.
·        Ability to clearly communicate in writing and verbally with staff at City and with partner organizations.
·        Ability to be a self-starter. This program requires a great deal of independence, self-motivation and confident leadership. Supervising staff will not always be in the field with the MCC Environmental Stewards, and stewards are expected to display the highest level of professionalism while serving the local community.
·        Knowledge and ability to perform outdoor projects, including but not limited to: trail construction, light carpentry, tree plantings, garden maintenance, general park cleanup.

Service Conditions:
Service will be generally indoors during the recruitment season (March—May), with occasional outdoor service projects on weekends and afterschool.  The stewards will be generally outdoors in all conditions during the summer season (June—August).

Host Site Specific Qualifications:
·        Valid drivers license
·        Ability to pass City of Portland background check
·        Conflict resolution and positive mentoring skills are desired.
·        Leadership experience and an ability to serve as a positive role model to a wide array of young people.
·        Experience with outdoor labor including trail maintenance, tree planting and gardening.
·        A second language would be desirable, but not required: French, Spanish, or Arabic.