Friends General Conference

Nurturing faith and Quaker practice

Group Coordinator

Junior Gathering Volunteer Job Description

Coordinator

Communicate with:    

  • Junior Gathering Coordinator
  • Junior Gathering Clerks
  • Other Coordinators
  • Assigned support staff

Work Grant:

  • Full Program Fees, room, board (morning)
  • 1/2 Program fees, room, board (evening)

Time Commitment:

  • 10-20 hours prior to Gathering; attend staff meetings and Open House on day before and first day of Gathering.
  • Morning staff: 30 - 35 hours during Gathering
  • Evening Staff: 20-25 hours during Gathering.

Description:

The children in Junior Gathering have a unique opportunity to grow mightily in the Spirit during a week of making friends, learning and having fun. Junior Gathering Coordinators have the care of that process.  They develop a curriculum and, with the help of support staff, implement their plans in a way that nurtures the spirit of each of the children in a safe environment.

Coordinators begin before coming to Gathering by preparing the curriculum, contacting the support staff assigned to them and requesting supplies.  During the week, they both create opportunities for the Spirit to shine and get out of the way when those opportunities create themselves. They also maintain a vigilance that watches to make sure all of the children are feeling physically, emotionally and spiritually safe.  Finally, they keep the curriculum moving in a way that keeps the children engaged.  This may mean balancing quiet and raucous activities, ditching plans that aren't working, and going along with the children's ideas when appropriate among other things.

The Junior Gathering Planning committee supports coordinators with regular check-ins during group time and availability to meet with them outside of the group.  Staff Meeting for Worship starts out each day and all staff are encouraged to attend.  A reasonable child to staff ratio is arranged by the FGC staff coordinator and JG clerks with the addition of support staff who are supervised by the coordinator.  We have been blessed for years with outstanding coordinators and support staff who have made Junior Gathering the success that it is.

Responsibilities

Prior to the Gathering

  • Review all materials that are sent to coordinators.
  • Plan daily curriculum for the week.
  • Determine what supplies will be needed and inform the JG Coordinator by the timeline requested.  Please be conservative in your requests - all requested items from the 26 coordinators must be found, bought or borrowed and returned and a extensive lists of required items puts a strain on the program.
  • Write a letter to the children who will be in your group to give them a taste of what to expect.  Staff will mail it to the children.
  • Make contact with the assigned support staff.  Give them an idea of what they can expect and find out in what ways they may be an asset to your group.

Evening before the Gathering begins

  • Attend Coordinator orientation on the Saturday evening prior to Gathering.

First Day of the Gathering

  • Attend the Sunday morning training sessions.
  • Attend the Sunday afternoon all-staff meeting.
  • Facilitate group staff meeting and set up your group’s space with your support staff.
  • Host your group's Junior Gathering Open House on Saturday evening.

During the Gathering

  • Attend Junior Gathering Worship each morning if at all possible.  This time is also used for announcements and updates on Junior Gathering activities.
  • With the help of support staff, implement your planned curriculum for your Junior Gathering group daily.  Morning group hours are from 8:45 – 12:00 Monday through Friday.  Evening group hours are from 6:45 – 9:00 Monday through Friday (excluding Wednesday).  Junior Gathering Staff are expected to be present 15 minutes before and after group.
  • Facilitate group staff meetings before or after Group time.
  • Supervise support staff. Ensure that their interactions with the children are appropriate and intervene as needed to do so.  This both supports and teaches the staff and makes the children's experience a positive one.
  • Ensure the space is set up and cleaned up before and after group.
  • Ensure daily worship is part of the routine.
  • Assign someone to prepare snack daily and have snack time with the children.
  • Take attendance and report absences or assign someone else to do so.
  • Communicate any concerns or problems that arise with the children to the Junior Gathering Coordinator or the clerks immediately.
  • Conduct regular head-counts and scan the group constantly to make sure that all are safe.
  • Take responsibility for the break-down and clean-up of your group space at the end of the week.

Requirements

  • Previous experience in Junior Gathering or similar experience facilitating groups of Quaker children.
  • Ability to maintain awareness of safety concerns while implementing program.
  • Ability to supervise support staff.
  • Experience in celebrating the Spirit with children.
  • Provide three references from people who are familiar with the staff person’s work with children
  • Active in a meeting during the 6 months prior to the Gathering
  • Provide consent for a background check