Hand to Hold Family Support Specialist
Hand to Hold® is a national non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that provides compassionate in-person hospital and virtual support to NICU and bereaved parents before, during and after a NICU stay. All programs are designed with the emotional, physical and social needs of NICU families in mind to help them feel more secure during a highly stressful time. This early intervention mental health support is available at no cost to NICU families across the United States.
As a 2022 & 2023 Best Place for Working Parents® business, our dynamic, growing organization seeks a Family Support Specialist (FSS) to join our team in Dallas, TX. Reporting to the Hospital Partner Program Manager, and under the general direction of the Program Director, this person will be instrumental in helping to bring the 3-year strategic plan to life for Hand to Hold®.
We are dedicated to hiring a diverse workforce that reflects the diverse families that we support through our mission. We are thought leaders and change makers. We are always learning, developing, and evolving to champion a world where all NICU families thrive. One in seven babies born in the US spends time in the NICU. Bring your talents to our growing team to help ensure that all NICU families have a hand to hold.
Hand to Hold® is seeking a person with 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 will help Hand to Hold® fulfill our contractual agreement with local area hospitals to provide peer psycho-social support and education for NICU families in partnership with hospital staff as appropriate.
The role requires leaning on one’s own personal experience and specific peer support training. Training to become a certified Mental Health Peer Specialist and with others on the Hand to Hold programs team will be offered to prepare for this peer support role. Additionally, the Family Support Specialist will complete the hospital’s credentialing process that requires HIPAA training and proof of vaccinations, which may include COVID-19, before orientation and training commences in a hospital setting.
The Family Support Specialist’s primary responsibilities include visiting families at the bedside one-on-one, facilitating weekly support groups, distributing resources, and hosting holiday events. There are also essential data entry and reporting requirements to supervisors and hospital staff about the interactions with families.
- Provides bedside 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.
- Plans, prepares for and facilitates in-person support groups using Hand to Hold’s custom support group curriculum.
- Transports materials (including parent bags and resources, event materials, etc) required in the NICU from Hand to Hold’s office, or other locations, as needed.
- Helps families identify and access medical and therapeutic services in their community.
- Provides bereavement resources and 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.
- Meeting with families occasionally during evening or weekend hours.
- Attends meetings with Hospital Partner Program Manager and/or Program Director and other Family Support Specialists, either virtually or in person.
- 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 or hospital events as required.
- Helps to recruit volunteers and peer mentors.
- Submits weekly and monthly reports – timesheets, expense reports – in a timely fashion.
- Performs other duties as may be assigned by the Hospital Partner Program Manager and/or Program Director.
- Open to applicants in the Dallas, Texas metropolitan area.
- Part-time, Non-exempt hourly position.
- Estimated at 12 - 15 hours per week.
- Compensation: $20/hour; $21/hour if bilingual in English & Spanish
- 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.
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, please include a resume and cover letter.
- Bachelor’s degree or equivalent professional work experience required.
- Personal experience with a child in the NICU is required.
- Being bilingual in English and Spanish; is highly preferred.
- Certification in peer support by the State of Texas, or willingness to complete peer support training (virtual or in person) within the first 180 days, as well as completion of state certification process.
- Proof of vaccinations and other supporting documentation for hospital credentialing processes.
- 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.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.
- Demonstrated competence with a variety of office tools including virtual communication and meetings, time scheduling, video conferencing, organizational and project management, and CRM technology.