Employment Opportunities 

Position: Youth Organizer 

Post Date: September 16, 2022

Deadline to Apply: September 30, 2022

The Opportunity

Orange County Environmental Justice (OCEJ) and OCEJ Education Fund (OCEJEF) are an affiliated pair of multicultural, multi-ethnic 501(c)(4) and 501(c)(3) environmental justice organizations that are developing grassroots leadership and advancing an environmental justice agenda in Orange County, California. Since their formation in 2016, OCEJ and OCEJEF have:

  • Canvassed and surveyed 4,163 people living in the Orange County communities that are most vulnerable to pollution and negative environmental impacts;

  • Produced an analysis of the most pressing environmental justice issues in our region as identified by these residents;

  • Organized a committee of resident leaders who want to get involved in environmental justice issues; and

  • Conducted Soil Lead (Pb) research across multiple land uses in Santa Ana

  • Documented point and nonpoint source water contamination through PhotoVoice

  • Conducted community outreach to support Census participation

  • Launched an integrated voter engagement program

  • Launched a youth internship program focused on supporting movements to defend indigenous sacred sites

  • Developed an annual environmental justice organizing academy

  • Built a membership of 50+ people across Orange County

At present, OCEJ and OCEJ Education Fund are fiscally sponsored projects governed by an Advisory Board composed of leaders with a strong commitment to environmental justice, knowledge of Orange County, and deep connections to local Indigenous, Latino/a/x, and Asian American/Pacific Islander communities.

OCEJ and OCEJ Education Fund seek an experienced, highly motivated educator, organizer, and strategic thinker to serve as Youth Organizer. The Youth Organizer will report to and work in close collaboration with the Lead Organizer and the Project Director, as well as with local residents and other stakeholders to coordinate the organization’s youth activism and environmental justice education programs. 

Responsibilities

  • Coordinate the organization’s youth activism programs, including the Defending the Sacred Youth Internship and the youth component of our soil-lead remediation work, while simultaneously centering youth in the decision-making and implementation of these programs. 

  • Coordinate the organization’s youth education programs, including our annual summer Environmental Justice Organizing Academy and our year-round environmental education program with OC Coastkeeper at local high schools, developing and delivering a curriculum grounded in environmental and climate justice issues relevant to the student population.  

  • Ensure that youth members and participants in our programs are trained in best practices in community building and organizing strategy to ensure they can meaningfully engage in grassroots movements and successfully advocate for their wellbeing and the wellbeing of their communities. 

  • Work with OCEJ staff organizers and other local organizations and movements to connect our youth work to grassroots movements for environmental and climate justice, and to find ways to center youth perspectives in advocacy and campaign strategies. 

  • Ensure all of our youth work is accessible to Orange County’s most vulnerable residents, especially non-English speakers, youth with disabilities, undocumented youth, houseless youth, and Black and Indigenous youth. 

  • Imagine and propose strategies for creating new coalitions and building on our existing relationships with organizational stakeholders and grassroots leaders, including representatives from local Black, Latino/a/x, Asian and Pacific Islander, and Indigenous communities through our youth programs. 

  • Work with Project Director and Lead Organizer to develop long-term vision and goals of our youth work, as well as measures of success.

  • Keep contact lists, successes/lessons, and data generated through work organized, accessible, and up-to-date. 

  • Support with grant writing and grant reporting as needed. 

Qualifications

The ideal candidate has a combination of experience, training, and/or education that

demonstrates:

  • Self-motivation with the ability to take initiative and to be a strong team player.

  • Excellent personal organization and time management skills.

  • Strong commitment to environmental justice and understanding of environmental issues that impact low-income communities of color.

  • Minimum two years of organizing experience in an environmental, labor, community, political, or faith-based context with demonstrated ability to organize using horizontal and/or consensus-based decision-making processes. 

  • Experience designing and utilizing popular education techniques and leadership development training.

  • Experience working with youth through a non-punitive and/or transformative justice lens, or at least familiarity with best practices for organizing alongside youth in grassroots movements for justice. 

  • Bilingual in English and either Spanish, Vietnamese or Khmer.

  • Cultural competence and emotional intelligence to support and promote a collaborative, multi-racial, multi-ethnic environment.

  • Outstanding interpersonal communications skills and love of people with a demonstrated ability to lead, inspire others to take leadership, build strong working relationships, and hold self and others accountable.

  • Familiarity with Microsoft Office Suite, Google applications, social media, and virtual workspace tools such as Zoom. 

 

Terms of Employment

  • This position will begin part-time, and will expand to a full-time, exempt position as soon as funding is available. 

  • Hourly rate of $20 per hour for 20 hours a week. 

  • Partial health benefits (medical, dental, and vision), to be expanded to full benefits once the position transitions to full-time. 

  • The position will sometimes require irregular hours of work, including evenings and weekends as needed.

  • Hybrid virtual and in-person work environment. 

  • Must have a reliable means of transportation. 

To Apply

Submit a one page cover letter, a one page resume, and three professional references (all in .pdf format) to patricia@ocej.org. Applicants will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Applications received by September 30th, 2022, 11:59pm (PST) will be prioritized for consideration for interviews.