Community Coordinator - United Theological College (UTC)

Job Description: Community Coordinator

The Community Coordinator holds lead responsibility for the development of the UTC project, La Présence—QI, under the direction of the project co-directors, and in collaboration with student staff, volunteers, and the Project Team.

Project Description

La Présence—QI is simultaneously

  1. A newly forming faith community within a diverse, richly networked urban neighbourhood of Montréal
  2. A multi-disciplinary learning site for theology students to develop skills in entrepreneurial and transformational leadership
  3. A “living research experiment” in new expressions of bilingual ministry within a secular, predominantly francophone context. 

The project will create a new faith community presence in the Southwest area of Montréal, characterized by

  • Regular, small events that value arts, music, values, spirituality, community building, and hospitality
  • Outreach to francophone Quebeckers, spiritual seekers, and others
  • Reflection on faith, values, religion, and spirituality 
  • Bilingual, multicultural, interfaith encounters    
  • Support and a community for those outside the church seeking spiritual resources
  • Ongoing research and sharing of learning with the wider church.

Description of Community Coordinator Position

Under the authority of the Board of the United Theological College and the oversight of the project co-directors, Alyson Huntly and Angelika Piché, the Coordinator will take a lead role in implementing the first phase of La Présence—QI. The Coordinator will help La Présence—QI move toward its vision and achieve its objectives by offering leadership, hands on participation in programs and activities, and through support and oversight of volunteers and staff.

(for details, see project objectives and implementation plan)

Specifically, the Coordinator work with the project to manage and set ongoing direction for La Présence—QI including:

  • Developing a collaborative working relationship and effective liaison with community partners and Project Directors, and the Project Team
  • Developing an annual action plan (based on the project parameters), setting priorities, and selecting project and program ideas for implementation in consultation with the Project Team
  • Assisting the student staff person to develop and implement plans for community mapping and needs assessment
  • Supporting the administration of initiatives/events developed by the Project Team in order to realise priorities, projects and program, and assesses results
  • Seeking the help of key people to promote the realisation and successful completion of the required tasks and actions
  • Participating actively in programs and events when his or her presence is needed
  • Developing budget estimates for activities related to selected priorities, projects and programs, and presents these to the various decision-making bodies;
  • Assisting with the administration of the budget
  • Coordinating the development of the project’s social media presence and website (including working with technical support and web designer)
  • Providing field placement supervision to one UTC student (engaging in theological reflection four hours per month), writing student evaluations, and participating in a supervisor orientation event and four 2-hour supervisor-student field conferences)
  • Helping to monitor, document, and evaluate the progress and accomplishments of the project
  • Begin to work with the project team on long-term financial sustainability and revenue generation for the project.

Qualifications

  • In agreement with the theological vision of the United Church of Canada and the Mission Statement of The United Theological College
  • Undergraduate degree in a related field or a recognized equivalency
  • Five years of relevant experience with at least three years in relation to community of faith functions and the development of community projects/transformational ministry
  • Demonstrated leadership capacity
  • Excellent interpersonal skills that foster trust and commitment
  • Demonstrated political and communication skills that foster active cooperation and development
  • Sound knowledge of the reality of the United Church of Canada, its evolution and major issues, particular with respect to Quebec/Montreal context
  • In-depth knowledge of the society, culture, and intrinsic references of French-speaking population of Québec
  • Strong organizational skills.
  • Sensitivity to pastoral care issues and knowledge how to respond
  • Awareness of professional boundaries and compliance with United Church ethical standards
  • Fluency in both spoken and written French and a functional knowledge of English.

Terms

Salary Scale: Equivalent to United Church ministry personnel salary scale at 25% time (approx. 10 hours per week).

 

Dates of Employment: September 1, 2016 – June 30 2017  with possibility for renewal.

 

Location: The Coordinator will work out of the co-working hub at Le Salon 1861, at 550 Rue Richmond, Montreal (QC) H3J 1V3. While some work may be able to be done from home, most of the work will be done on site, with weekly presence required at least one day per week.

 

Application: Interested applicants are to send their curriculum vitae in Word or PDF format together with a cover letter not to exceed two pages explaining their vision for the position to the following address: ahuntly@utc.ca. This is an immediate hire. Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis until a suitable candidate is found.


La Présence—QI

Vision

To create a new faith community within an area and population not currently reached by the United Church (francophone, multicultural, diverse, a community experiencing urban renewal and transformation) which will also be a locus of learning for theological students, theological faculty, and the wider church.

Objectives

1.  To enable theological students to

  • Develop transformational leadership capacity and skills (e.g., community building, entrepreneurship, planning, fundraising, faith practices, outreach) for new expressions of ministry
  • Develop theological insight and vision to be the church engaged in the wider community and world
  • Discern how to collaborate with and learn from diverse community partners including other disciplines within the QI network, such as researchers in social and cultural innovation, urban planners, business students; community stakeholders; social and community organizations (including multicultural, francophone, secular, and multi-faith groups).

 

2.  To enhance quality of life in the QI district by strengthening community values, spirituality, and interconnection, as part of the fabric of a healthy, sustainable community, including

  • Helping community residents and groups connect more deeply with one another through bilingual events and spiritual practices
  • Offering welcome and hospitality for community members (especially francophones, immigrants and refugees, people living on low incomes, and young adults)
  • Strengthening community values, social responsibility, and compassion
  • Offering bilingual resources and support to those who are searching spiritually.

 

3. To build knowledge and capacity to enable the United Church to be innovative, creative, and responsive in a “post-Christendom” era by sharing learning about

  • Enabling transformational leadership
  • Emergent faith practices
  • Theological vision
  • Collaboration with diverse, secular partners (e.g., francophone, urban Québec).

 

4.   To develop bilingual (French-English) leaders for new ministry development in francophone and bilingual contexts.


Plan for Achieving Stated Goals and Objectives

 

Theological students (and in the longer term, a ministry Intern) are supported and mentored by the Community Coordinator to

  • Lead community-based bilingual faith practices and small events
  • Do analysis, networking, research (e.g., community mapping, interviews, focus groups, building interest within the wider community)
  • Meet with other students (cross disciplinary), researchers, and community stakeholders at Le Salon
  • Develop a presence in the community
  • Attend/lead workshops and presentations with other QI collaborators
  • Develop ideas for financially sustainable ministry (with entrepreneurial mentor)
  • Participate in program evaluation.

 

The Project Team (volunteers, coordinator, students, co-directors) work together to provide

  • Regular bilingual opportunities for contemporary spiritual practices (e.g., meditation, small group reflection, celebrations of life events and transitions; use of the arts)
  • Community-based pastoral care; responsiveness and presence in the community; intentional connection with young adults, people living on low incomes, immigrants and refugees
  • Support for identifying needs (especially with identified target groups)
  • Small group community events and workshops
  • Events focused on engaging the wider community in issues of values, community well-being, social justice, interfaith dialogue, or multicultural connections.

 

Learning from the project is documented and shared by

  • Observing, documenting, evaluating, and analyzing the experience (throughout the project and via a separate research initiative)
  • Sharing information, tools, strategies, and insights with the wider church through a website, presentations, and publications
  • Integrating what is learned into teaching and ongoing research throughout the theological education curriculum at UTC and the Montréal School of Theology
  • Collaborating with Ministries in French to share learning and build on project successes with other French ministry initiatives.

Plan for Project Implementation and Delivery

 

Project Development and Planning (Summer 2016)

Throughout the late spring and summer we will do community analysis (the community is already highly researched so this will involve primarily an analysis of existing data, needs assessment, and community mapping) and we will host small pilot events to begin to create project visibility. We will refine project objectives in consultation with the consultative team and community partners, select students who will be involved (including one who will work 20 hours per week) and hire a part-time (10 hours per week) community coordinator who will develop specific partnerships with faith and community groups and QI stakeholders, continue to identify sources of funding, and coordinate student engagement. We will stay in touch with Ministries in French as these opportunities develop in order to integrate the Quebec cultural dimension into the needs assessment process.

 

Year I (Fall 2016 to Summer 2017)

A process of small “conversation groups,” will be used to develop a profile of community spiritual needs, questions, and concerns. These will be bilingual.

 

A half-time (20 hours per week) student staff person, working with one or two other students and volunteers, and with the support of the Coordinator, will offer spiritual practices from the Christian tradition, initiate an engaged presence at Le Salon, and continue community analysis, needs assessment, and networking. Other students and volunteers will work to create an Internet/social media presence for the project, including a project website where learning and insights can be shared. They will

  • Assess community spiritual needs and spiritual well-being
  • Form small community and conversation groups
  • Coordinate, support and mentor student engagement
  • Provide regular spiritual practices, workshops, and community events
  • Maintain a regular presence at Le Salon
  • Bilingual community networking events and conversations
  • Create an Internet/social media presence and project website
  • Begin to work in collaboration with people who have the expertise on long-term financial sustainability and revenue generation.