Ampersand Families recruits and supports permanent families for older youth, and champions practices in adoption and permanency that restore belonging, dignity and hope. We are seeking experienced professionals who understand the profound impact that child welfare intervention has on the lives of children, youth and families. A successful candidate for this position will be curious about the many ways permanency work can restore belonging, dignity and hope.

Ampersand Families is proud to be an employer of choice with an organizational culture of excellence that embraces humor, learning and collegial support. We employ professionals who are accountable for learning the skills, building the relationships and investing the time required to achieve and support real outcomes for youth, families and excellence in the programs designed to support them.

Ampersand Families is committed to doing our part to create a more equitable child welfare system. To that end, Ampersand Families provides equal employment opportunity for all persons regardless of race, color, religion, nationality, ethnic background, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, marital status, socio-economic status, status with regard to public assistance, political affiliation, veteran status, other non-visible differences and other protected attributes.

Child Welfare IV-E Scholars, please note that Ampersand Families is a Tier 2 Agency.  Please consider us as you search for a great agency to begin or to continue your child welfare career.

Our current employment opportunities are listed below

To apply, please send cover letter and resume to

Youth Leadership Development Coordinator

Position Description:

Youth engagement is a critical element of achieving Ampersand Families’ mission. The Youth Leadership Program Coordinator is responsible for managing all aspects of the Minnesota Youth Voice (MY Voice) program. We are looking for a skilled, self-motivated visionary leader to generate sustainable programming and implement creative ways to engage youth in advocacy efforts.  Youth who have experienced child welfare intervention have the potential to become change agents to improve foster care, adoption and child welfare delivery in Minnesota.  We need a passionate leader to help them realize that potential.  The young people we serve are often transient, and generally live across a wide swath of the state.  They have had varying experiences including early childhood trauma, child welfare intervention and, as a result, exhibit a wide range of developmental capacities. The program coordinator will lead one-on-one and group advocacy opportunities, from a positive youth development orientation, to impact the child welfare system.

More about MY Voice

The goal of the program is multifaceted: to give young people who have experienced all phases of child welfare intervention (foster care, reunification, kinship placement, adoption) an opportunity to connect with other youth who have shared experiences to learn from each other, support each other, and pool their voices for system change. Additionally, MY Voice would be able to provide training and support for relative and non-relatives who are contemplating providing permanency, child welfare support for child welfare professionals, and advocacy and education with legislators. Over the next few years, the goal is for MY Voice projects to impact some or all of these areas. Ultimately, we hope to help young people set an agenda for advocacy around foster care and adoption based on their lived experiences.

Primary Duties:

  • Coordinate details and communication for program events with youth, families, caregivers, staff, Permanency Specialists and other team members (within and outside Ampersand Families).
  • Work collaboratively with youth to develop and implement events and projects during each fiscal year
  • Transport youth to and from events
  • Coordinate and deliver youth programming for monthly Roundtable evenings and three family retreats per year
  • Engage youth towards ever-increasing leadership of My Voice direction and initiatives
  • Build and sustain relationships with peer agencies to build program capacity and participation
  • Inspire youth, community members, Ampersand Families, staff, policy makers and thought leaders to increase interest and action on child welfare reform
  • Manage and maintain presence in social media (Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat)
  • Recruit and develop youth leaders
  • Ensure youth application, confidentiality agreements, and permission materials are up to date
  • Maintain documentation of all activities, outreach, and communication with workers, youth, and families
  • Write quarterly reports on services provided and barriers to delivery
  • Manage a small program budget
  • Contribute to the on-going discussion of the role of MY Voice and the best practices for meeting the mission while maintaining the highest level of respect and dignity for each involved youth.


Experience and skills required:

  • Minimum of 3 years of experience in nonprofit sector, education, youth studies/development, social work or related field, and/or a combination of education and experience. Background in youth development leadership, community organizing, and/or child welfare preferred.
  • The strongest candidates will have project coordination and administrative experience as well as experience with the child welfare system and/or adoption.
  • Interest and experience working with teens using youth-centered, equity-focused and healing approaches
  • Dependable with self-directed work habits and collaborative work style
  • Enthusiasm for professional development and commitment to grow through feedback, consultation and training
  • Excellent organization skills, able to handle big picture and small detail aspects of the work
  • Ability to multi-task and problem solve, proficiency at simultaneously handling several projects with different timelines in a must
  • Strong communication skills; ability to communicate effectively and develop partnerships with wide range of community members, social service professionals, families and youth
  • Impeccable, clear boundaries with youth and families
  • Recognizes ways that race, gender identity, sexual orientation, ability level, and other identities (historically and presently) intersect and play out in the lives of youth who have experienced child welfare intervention
  • Experience and interest in internal and external communication and partnership development
  • Strong understanding of youth engagement in policy, as well as experience supporting youth/adult relationships
  • Interest in or experience with the political and legislative process/youth-led advocacy efforts
  • Enthusiastic facilitation/public speaking skills
  • Ability to work some evenings and weekends (approximately 4-6 evenings a month and up to 12 weekend days per year)
  • Ability to travel to community partner locations in the Twin Cities and Greater Minnesota
  • Familiarity with social media (Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat)
  • Competency with a variety of technology and computer programs (Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint)
  • Preferred experience/willing to learn: iMovie (Mac), Basic web design (Wix), Photo/video editing and skills using a  basic DSLR camera

There is potential for this to be a semi-remote position with regular check-ins at our St. Paul office at 2515 Wabash Avenue, Suite 150, St. Paul, MN 55114. Occasional in-state travel may be necessary.  A background check is required.

JOB TYPE:                         Hourly, Non-exempt, Part-Time

HOURS:                             24-30 hours per week

SUPERVISOR:                     Program Director

STARTING SALARY:            $20 -$24 per hour + full benefits

Please send resume` and cover letter to Al Willig, Finance & Operations Director at


Why choose Ampersand Families?

 I work at Ampersand because it’s a place where passionate people do excellent work. Ampersand is a place that’s truly mission-driven, that works hard on behalf of kids and families, and that invests in the people that are doing the work.  

Kate Mejicano, Permanency Specialist

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