Support Worker: youth & volunteer programs

Closing date

Location: Tapachula, Mexico. Live-in position (staff apartment / transition houses).

Placement: Five days a week, determined by roster. The post holder will be required to work some evenings and weekends. A minimum commitment of six months is required, twelve months is preferable

Reports to: Volunteer & Youth Coordinator

Our Vision and Focus

Our vision at Misión México is that through a loving, caring, family environment where we focus on education, the children in our care will have the opportunities to grow and reach their full potential.

Misión México is a family group home model established in 2001 by Pam and Alan Skuse. Since this time the number of children within our care have expanded and grown older. This has led to a complex case load of youth with varying levels of need. Misión México maintains a relationship with the DIF and other refuges to develop pathways which best support children coming in to Misión México. The vision of the Misión México refuge is to support children to excel in education so that they can transition successfully to positive, healthy futures.

Role Context

Our Volunteer Program and Youth Transition Program are both vital to the care and growth of our children and young adults. As these programs have expanded so has the need for more support, consistency and assistance to these programs, our children and young adults. The Support Worker would provide assistant and support to both these programs.

The focus of our Volunteer Program is to coordinate all volunteers and ensure they are working to assist with the day to day running of our main Misión Mexico house, the care of our children, and sharing of skills. Our volunteers play a vital role in ensuring our children's routines are upheld, extracurricular obligations are attended, and activities are planned and delivered.

Our Youth Transition Program (YTP) was established in 2014 to enable older youth within Misión México to begin their transition to semi-independent living, and build the skills required to live independently. Misión México has procured two off-site Youth Transition Houses for our young adults to live with onsite coordinators, whilst being supported to finish higher education or pursue other career goals.

The Support Worker works closely with the children and young adults living at Misión Mexico and our Youth Transition Houses, and is expected to be both a role model and a source of authority to our children and young adults.

Duties and Responsibilities

Direct Service Delivery and Pastoral Care

· Coordinate and facilitate weekly focus group sessions and activities for youth living in the main Misión México home

· Coordinate and facilitate regularly cooking and budgeting classes for youth aged 13+ living in the main Misión Mexico home, including shopping for ingredients at a local supermarket

· Assist in providing 1-2-1 development support to specific young people living in the main Misión Mexico home

· Assist in managing and supervising the children and young adults involvement in any extra-curricular activities, medical appointments or offsite excursions

· Act as shift leader when required to help provide consistency within the main Misión Mexico home

· When covering the live-in role in the Transition Houses, oversee the day-to-day running of the transition house including scheduling house meetings and encouraging the young adults to develop domestic skills, routines and practice their independent living skills.

· Respond appropriately and effectively to day-to-day situations including challenging, trauma-related behaviours.

· Consistently be a positive role model to the young people of Misión Mexico, whilst maintaining the confidentiality and safety of all our children and young adults

Administration and Project Management

· Undertake and complete administrative tasks and research as requested by the Volunteer & Youth Coordinator and/or the Youth Transition Program Manager (5 hours per week, according to a set schedule)

· Assist with and lead on projects and activities as designated by the Volunteer & Youth Coordinator / House Caregiver

· Regularly meet with the team to discuss program progress

Essential Criteria

· Experience working with children or young people from backgrounds of trauma and/or disadvantaged backgrounds

· Proven ability to engage positively with children and young adults, whilst maintaining a high level of pastoral care and understanding of boundary setting

· Strong conflict resolution, negotiation and problem solving skills

· Ability to demonstrate patience, consistency, empathy, flexibility, initiative, humour, honesty and maturity

· Proven ability to work as part of a team and show leadership qualities

· Valid ‘Working with Children Check’ and undergo a Criminal Records Check prior to employment. Subsequently, staff must report any criminal charges or court appearances.

· A minimum of both conversational Spanish and conversational English, fluent Spanish would be preferable

· Experience in basic cooking and nutrition skills

Desirable Criteria

· A minimum of 4 weeks experience volunteering at Misión Mexico

· Experience in facilitating activities, sports and group work suitable for children and young people

· Full driving license, with willingness to drive in Mexico if required


We provide accommodation in the staff apartment and a small living stipend for this role ($4,000 MXN per month) to cover cost of living.

On engagement of role there will be a 6-week probationary period at which time the Volunteer & Youth Coordinator and successful applicant will review position and future of the role.

Annual leave and working hours will be negotiated with the Volunteer & Youth Coordinator. This job description is not exhaustive, and is provided to assist the post holder to know what her/his duties are. It may be amended from time to time, without change to the levels of responsibility and in discussion with the post holder.

This role is for an immediate start. The current Support Worker will leave in early June, so we are expecting the replacement to arrive in mid May to quarantine for five days and spend time training with the current SW. Please forward a copy of your resume and a cover letter to to apply.

How to apply

Please forward a copy of your resume and a cover letter to Allison Duncan at to apply.