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Director, Youth Services

Youth Services | Los Angeles, CA | Full Time

Job Description

About Us:

Volunteers of America of Greater Los Angeles is a large, national not-for-profit organization founded in 1896.  We provide a variety of social services to Los Angeles area communities such as Head Start programs, Upward Bound college prep programs, veterans' services, homeless shelters, and low-income housing as well as drug and alcohol rehabilitation. Learn more at

Youth Services

With the help of family, school and community, today’s youth have a greater possibility of shifting their own futures to become self-sufficient leaders of tomorrow. VOALA offers support and a wide variety of educational and empowerment services as well as scholarships to help young people in our communities become thriving adults.

We operate five groups of programs aimed at helping underprivileged and at-risk youth in the following areas:

  • Education (Upward Bound & Educational Talent Search)
  • Employment (Youth Build)
  • Support & Counseling for Abused/At-risk youth (Outreach Centers)
  • Support for Runaways (TAY)
  • Gang Reduction (GRYD)
  • Other youth programs

Education – Upward Bound

VOALA’s Upward Bound program aims to bring educational opportunities to youth and their families as they navigate their journey toward educational attainment. The goal of Upward Bound is to increase the rate at which participant’s complete secondary education and enroll in and graduate from post-secondary education. In order to accomplish this, VOALA provides a large range of assistance and programming including after-school academic instruction in core subjects and foreign languages, as well as PSAT, SAT, and ACT test preparation. Career exploration and mentoring are also an integral component to assist community youth in deciding on potential college majors and career options.

VOALA also provides college and career planning workshops, a summer program, individualized academic planning and counseling, financial aid advising, scholarship and application assistance, supplemental Saturday instruction and weekly tutoring as well as college and cultural field trips and an alumni program.

Education – Education Talent Search

VOALA’S Education Talent Search (ETS) program helps to encourage low income and potential first generation college students to complete secondary school; enroll in postsecondary education; and seek financial aid. Providing support and information on all aspects of planning for admission to – and graduation from – a post-secondary institution. The primary focus of the ETS program is to identify low-income, first-generation students who are at risk of dropping out of high school. ETS provides advancement information to assist students in graduating from high school, completing their A-G requirements, and assisting them in planning for college entrance exams as well as college and financial aid applications, as well as career development assistance.


VOALA’s YouthBuild aims to provide educational and pre-apprenticeship training to at risk youth ages 16-24 who are looking to rebuild their lives and communities. The overarching goal of YouthBuild is to develop and build self-sufficient individuals and leaders using a strengths-based approach. Additionally, the program integrates academic education leading to a high school diploma with opportunities for advanced education, leadership development, career exploration, and community service learning into a cohesive and effective program based on best practices in youth education and employment services.

Street Outreach

VOALA’S efforts to meet the unique needs of homeless Transitional Aged Youth (TAY) began in 2010, and has grown into a large system of supportive programming and housing. Specially trained outreach specialist look to connect with youth without permanent residence. Specially trained Outreach Specialists provide gateway services both on the street and at VOALA’s Drop-In Center. Street-based gateway services will include basic need packs, safe sex kits, water, snacks, and referral information. Once safely taken off the streets and placed into Emergency Shelter, VOALA continues to work with youth to encourage them to take the next step by entering a Transitional Living Program, where they will receive housing and intensive case management

TAY Youth

VOALA recognizes that serving Transitional Age Youth (TAY) means focusing on a variety of their needs. This is why VOALA offers several TAY programs that serve a wide range of populations. VOALA’s transitional housing options for TAY include specific housing units and programs for TAY who are victims of sex trafficking, units for LGBTQ youth who are victims of human trafficking, and independent living for former foster youth ages 18-21 and their children. In addition, VOALA also provides a myriad of programming for homeless youth including: a mobile outreach van, street outreach for exploited youth, addiction counseling and support, emergency shelter assistance, rental assistance, case management, and mentorship opportunities.

GRYD – Gang Reduction Youth Development

VOALA provides comprehensive wraparound services for youth in need of diversion throughout several communities in the Los Angeles area. GRYD intervention services are delivered using a two pronged approach. Firstly, a specialized, street based mediation team is employed to stop or prevent violence through quick involvement and resourceful diversion techniques. Secondly, youth are provided redirection and support to a variety of activities facilitated by a dedicated team of VOALA program managers, case managers, and intervention workers. Programming includes mental health based workshops and trainings, recreational and leisure activities, field trips, and community based events. These efforts have culminated in VOALA’s GRYD Youth Center, a facility that operates daily as a day center for youth to attend case management meetings, obtain referral services, and to have a supportive and safe place to express themselves and grow.

Other Youth Program

VOALA is always exploring new opportunities for youth. Applying for youth programs from a diversity of funders including foundation funds. VOALA may have small grants that serve the youth population, currently VOALA has a couple of small grants. This also includes respite services funded under Regional Centers.

Job Summary and Purpose:

This position supervises the provision to clients of individualized assistance through access to service linkages, counseling, life planning, and various crisis intervention methods in order to prepare individuals for further success. The Director is responsible for the management of program activities, supervision of staff, compliance with federal, state, local, and agency requirements, record keeping of fiscal and student data, and evaluation of program objectives.

Essential Job Duties Responsibilities:

Reporting to the COO, VOA-LA, the Director – Youth Services will:

  • Direct a full range of professional and para-professional employees in efficient program operations
  • Evaluate program effectiveness and make recommendations to senior management (CEO, COO, CFO, Director of HR) for program changes and improvements
  • Advise senior management regarding future program direction
  • Develop and maintain inter-agency and community relationships
  • Communicate with federal program analyst/funding auditors (as applicable) and respond to requests regarding program operation in a timely manner
  • Lead Program Directors of various programs and supervise the creation of, and adherence to, annual budgets and program requirements
  • Hire and retain appropriate staff, ensuring career development and succession planning
  • Coordinate in-service training events for staff
  • Monitor program compliance to funding sources' regulations as well as internal policies and procedures
  • Other duties as directed by the COO, VOA-LA

Essential Functions:

The essential functions are key requirements, specific tasks, and job duties of the position that are required on a regular basis.

  • PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT: Lead and monitor programs serving clients, set program goals and find the necessary resources to meet those goals.
  • WORKFORCE MANAGEMENT: Supervise the hiring and retention of appropriate staff, conduct workforce and succession planning.
  • FUNDER FOCUS: Ensure subordinate Programs are accountable and meet Funder Requirements.
  • COORDINATION OF SERVICES: Collaborates with other service providers to link various programs to community resources and supportive services.
  • ADMINISTRATION: Keep comprehensive records of compliance with Funder and Regulatory requirements.
  • PLANNING AND ORGANIZATION: Effectively plans workload of subordinate individuals and programs; budgets, deploys, and organizes resources.
  • CHANGE LEADERSHIP: Identifies better, faster, more efficient ways to achieve the mission of ODR.



  • Master's Degree (Social Work or related) or the equivalent combination of education and experience (8-10 years).


  • Minimum of 8 years of experience in the areas of staff supervision; budget and program management; program development and evaluation; reporting and compliance with federal regulations.


  • Strong knowledge of Programmatic standards of operation, applicable federal, state, local, rules and regulations.
  • Ability to develop budgets and monitor expenditure.
  • Ability to plan, hire, supervise and evaluate the work of others client focused ideology.

Skills and Abilities

  • Basic Microsoft operating system navigation, outlook, word, excel, power-point, and internet browser.
  • Demonstrated strong written and verbal communication, set priorities, handle multiple tasks, problem solving, decision making, interpret data, detail oriented, accurate, analytical, organize, read/write; proficient in understanding and communication of the spoken and written English language, meet established deadlines.
  • Deep understanding, ability to assess, and consult with team on participant acuity and appropriate levels of care through treatment team meetings.
  • Ability to coach and mentor staff.
  • Client- focused, Prompt, collaborative/team player, regular attendance, adaptable, leader, communicator, ability to multitask, organized, consistent, compassionate, ability to delegate, mentorship skills, effective stress management, leadership skills, conflict resolution/mediation.

Preferred Skills for this Position:

  • Minimum of 3 - 5 years of relevant professional experience working with federally and state funded programs.
  • Knowledge of academic advising services, development of individualized services plans; and college, career, financial aid, and economic literacy services.
  • Familiarity with YouthBuild MIS system, and other database systems.

Volunteers of America is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex including sexual orientation and gender identity, national origin, disability, protected Veteran Status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state, or local law

This employer participates in E-Verify and will provide the federal government with your Form 1-9 information to confirm that you are authorized to work in the U.S.

If E-Verify cannot confirm that you are authorized to work, this employer is required to give you written instructions and an opportunity to contact Department of Homeland Security (OHS) or Social Security Administration (SSA) so you can begin to resolve the issue before the employer can take any action against you, including terminating your employment.