31st Annual Rodman Ride for Kids

Thank you to all who supported the 31st Annual Rodman Ride for Kids on Saturday, September 25th, 2021. Our team enjoyed being back in person and on the road for what turned out to be a beautiful Ride Day.

A special shout out to Mikaela, Emily, Sarah, Brody, George, and Parker (pictured above) from the Raising A Reader MA's Emerging Leaders Board, and dog Brody for the 25-mile bike ride! Our entire team of 27 riders (in person and virtual) helped make this a success and we are so close to our $20,000 fundraising goal!

Rodman Ride Fundraising Continues

Support our Rodman Ride Fundraiser
through November 1 by visiting the Event Site HERE.

Career Opportunities

DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT

Organizational Overview

Currently in Massachusetts, two thirds of children from low-income families enter kindergarten without the literacy skills they need to succeed. Raising A Reader MA (RAR-MA) directly addresses this need by providing the books and family education to ensure all children enter kindergarten with a foundation for success. Since its founding in 2006, RAR-MA annually serves approximately 7,500 children. Over the next few years, RAR-MA plans to deepen its impact in Massachusetts. We are seeking an experienced, well-connected development professional to refine our development strategy and lead fundraising, with a particular focus on increasing individual and corporate giving.

Position Summary

The Director of Development (DOD) will report to the Executive Director and participate as a member of a three-person Executive Leadership Team, which includes the Director of Programs. The Director of Development is responsible for working with the Executive Director and Board of Directors and is the primary staff liaison to the Development Committee and Marketing and Communications Committee, to strategically target development efforts to grow revenues and relationships over time and increase the community of funders. The Director of Development will lead and be supported by the Development Team which includes a part-time remote contract Grant Manager, a full-time Development and Communications Manager, and a part-time remote Executive Admin and Data Analytics Manager.

The DOD provides high level strategic leadership, execution, and operational management of the organization’s current and future development activities, while also focusing on increasing the organization's ability to attract and retain donors. The DOD is responsible for creating annual and multi-year strategic development plans and for providing leadership and oversight for all fundraising activities including major gifts, annual funds, special events, corporate, foundation, and government support, and new opportunities. Currently the organization raises approximately $750,000-$900,000 per year through philanthropic support from foundations, corporations, and individuals.

The successful candidate will be drawn to the RAR-MA team culture that values a close, congenial spirit of family and is laser focused on the mission and the beneficiary communities, partners, and families, while creating a donor centric relationship with funders. Our team works co-creatively, cooperatively, and collaboratively. Since RAR-MA operates in Boston and Gateway cities across the Commonwealth, RAR-MA staff is adept at working collaboratively and remotely using electronic shared resources.  Work time for the Director of Development can be flexible with in-office time and remote work, while recognizing that donor meetings, board meetings, networking and industry events, and other needs may require flexibility throughout the day and evening.

Key Responsibilities                                                  

Development Strategy

  • Provide overall development strategy and leadership, with a particular emphasis on developing and executing the organization’s short- and long-term fundraising strategies for high-level individual giving as well as strategies that build on RAR-MA’s signature and successful Dinner with an Author Gala and other events.
  • Build on recent development strategy planning by refining and executing the annual plan for fundraising, including identification of growth areas, measures of success, return on investment, and supporting metrics.
  • Increase support from individuals, including major gifts, in support of RAR-MA’s long-term sustainability and growth strategy.

Development Execution

  • Drive and execute identification, research, cultivation, and stewardship work to attract new donors, deepen relationships with existing donors and ensure a rewarding donor experience to increase retention and giving annually.
  • Become a high-level expert in RAR-MA programming and be able to speak knowledgeably, passionately, and compellingly about organizational impact, current success stories, and programmatic initiatives.
  • Collaborate with Director of Programs to ensure that funding is aligned with program needs and activities
  • Work efficiently, coordinate and lead efforts across roles, and strategically build on organizational strengths to improve return on investment, conversion of event attendees to donors, and donor retention with an overall focus on outcomes.
  • Manage development budget and revenue forecasting and report results in a timely manner
  • Utilize the capabilities of the existing CRM system (Salesforce) and other donor resources to manage the entire donation process and produce reports that inform development efforts.
  • Oversee events, managing expenses and making use of outside event consultants if cost-effective in maximizing staff time and return on investment.
  • Oversee grants, including weekly pipeline reviews and whole organization participation in grant preparation, site visits, and reporting that strengthens grants capacity, making use of contract grant writers as needed.
  • Oversee consultants and vendors working in development areas, ensuring that all fundraising and communication initiatives are strategic, effective, and focused on outcomes.
  • Oversee all public relations and marketing efforts by working closely with the Development and Communications Manager
  • Supervise and support the Development and Communications Manager in the creation of clear and compelling communications to institutional funders, donors, and community members
  • Supervise and support the Data Analytics Manager to maximize efficiencies, complement revenue growth strategy and conduct donor research.

Qualifications

  • Passion for our mission
  • 5+ years of development experience, including at the executive level, to earn the respect and support of various constituencies including the Board, team, donors, press, community leaders, and partners
  • Experience in creating annual fundraising plans and development calendars
  • Proven record of measurable accomplishments in fundraising, particularly in the areas of individual major gifts, and corporate giving, with a working knowledge of all other aspects of fundraising, such as annual campaigns, special events, foundation support, and local, state, and federal funding opportunities
  • Ability to think creatively and identify new opportunities
  • Demonstrated success in securing individual and corporate donors and stewarding existing relationships
  • Exceptional interpersonal, networking, written, presentation and verbal communication skills
  • Eagerness to learn, grow, and stay on top of trends in philanthropy and early literacy
  • Excellent ability to write and edit persuasive materials
  • Exceptional time, task, project management and organizational skills focused on both short-term and long-term strategy with an attention to detail
  • Demonstrated ability to work autonomously and effectively without close supervision
  • Willingness to function effectively as a member of a team and to participate in activities that will contribute to the organization’s overall success
  • Strong understanding and practice of cultural humility and respect for others
  • Proficiency in Salesforce, other CRM, or fundraising software and/or systems
  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent life/professional experience

This position is full-time, based in Boston, MA with an annual salary of $90K-$100K commensurate with experience. RAR-MA offers a competitive benefits package and a flexible, collaborative environment as part of the overall compensation considerations.

RAR-MA encourages individuals of all backgrounds to apply for this position. Raising A Reader MA is an equal opportunity employer that is committed to creating a multicultural organization.  We celebrate the diversity of our world and our community, and we seek to build a team that reflects that strength.

Note: Vaccination is a condition of employment. RAR-MA has a vaccination policy that was created based on the information available from the CDC and local authorities as of 09/01/2021. We understand that information is evolving daily, and we reserve the right to amend and/or update the policy based on updated guidance from the CDC, local authorities, and/or business needs.

To apply: Please send a resume and cover letter describing your interest in and qualifications for the position, as well as a writing sample, to careers@raisingareaderma.org. Please state where you learned of this opportunity.

 

DEVELOPMENT AND COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER

Organizational Overview

Currently in Massachusetts, two thirds of children from low-income families enter kindergarten without the literacy skills they need to succeed. Raising A Reader MA (RAR-MA) directly addresses this need by providing the books and family education to ensure all children enter kindergarten with a foundation for success. Since its founding in 2006, RAR-MA annually serves approximately 7,500 children. Over the next few years, RAR-MA plans to deepen its impact in Massachusetts. We are seeking an experienced, well-connected development professional to refine our development strategy and lead fundraising, with a particular focus on increasing individual and corporate giving.

Position Summary

The Development and Communications Manager will take a lead role in identifying and securing funding from institutional donors (foundations and corporations), support volunteer activities, administer the Salesforce database, and assist the Director of Development with events and other activities as needed. They will be a key member of the development team, working at the direction of the Director of Development in collaboration with the Executive Director.

This position offers a competitive salary and benefits, is ideal for someone who is ready to expand and deepen their fundraising skills and provides a great opportunity to learn and grow within a dynamic organization. We are a small team, and collaboration, entrepreneurial initiatives and continuous learning are encouraged.

Key Responsibilities                                                  

Foundation and Corporate Grant Management: Liaise between Grants Manager and Program/Evaluation team to support and review grant proposals and reports; manage the stewarding process and touch points with foundation contacts.

Volunteer Management: Manage and serve as primary internal contact for the Emerging Leaders Board of young professionals. Coordinate corporate volunteer opportunities and manage volunteers at signature events.

Donor Stewardship: Contribute to and help execute major donor strategy; grow and support mid-level donors; support all donor engagement and recognition efforts; craft tailored communications for each segmented donor group.

Gift Processing and Database Management: Fully manage the Salesforce contact management system for the development team, including creating accurate timelines, maintaining contact information, and documenting, recognizing, and processing all pledges and gifts.

Communications and Marketing: Responsible for all donor (current and perspective) outreach initiatives, including website management, monthly newsletter, monthly blog posts, social media presence on all channels, and others; create collateral (print and digital), including yearly annual and impact reports, organizational overviews, and others as needed; build out media contacts and presence and develop press releases; identify and manage volunteers for particular needs, including graphic design and others; ensure consistent branding and messaging across all communications.

Event Support: Support all aspects of our signature fundraising events, potentially including, but not limited to, the Dinner with an Author gala, Better Together Winter Soirée, Leadership in Literacy Award Breakfast, and various Emerging Leaders Board events.

Fundraising Campaign Execution and Support: Responsible for various fundraising campaigns, including the year-end Annual Appeal and the Rodman Ride for Kids; leverage and collaborate with the Emerging Leaders Board and Director of Development for effective execution.

Board and Committee Interaction: Act as a liaison to the Board of Directors and standing board committees that include the Marketing and Communications Committee and Development Committee; offer supporting resources to these groups to further extend the reach of organization’s fundraising and outreach initiatives.

Qualifications and Training

  • 5+ years of professional experience in development and/or communications roles
  • Excellent writing and editing capabilities for the creation of persuasive materials including grant proposals, informational brochures, donor correspondence and electronic communications
  • Proven record of accomplishment in fundraising, grant writing, research and solicitation of institutional foundations, corporate grants, and sponsorships
  • Press/media relations experience preferred
  • Creative design expertise; experience with Canva preferred
  • Ability to lead and manage volunteers and interns
  • Superior attention to detail, including strong editing skills
  • Exceptional time management, project management (simultaneous with multiple projects) and organizational skills
  • Demonstrated ability to work autonomously and effectively without close supervision
  • Willingness to function effectively as a member of a team and to participate in activities that will contribute to the overall success of an entrepreneurial nonprofit program
  • Ability to strongly represent RAR-MA in the public and engage with program constituents, major donors, board members and other community stakeholders
  • Proficiency in all Microsoft Office 365 and GSuite components and WordPress is a plus
  • Proficiency and/or comfort with cloud computing and contact management platforms such as Constant Contact, Salesforce, and Greater Giving
  • Flexible to attend morning meetings and evening events as needed
  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution or equivalent professional experience
  • Strong understanding and practice of cultural humility and respect for others
  • Demonstrated commitment to improving the lives of children and families; deep appreciation and enthusiasm for the literacy mission of RAR-MA

 

This position is full-time, based in Boston, MA with an annual salary of $60,000 commensurate with experience. Work can be flexible to allow in-office time and remote work, while recognizing that certain events, times, and needs will influence the exact schedule. RAR-MA offers a competitive benefits package and a flexible, collaborative environment as part of the overall compensation considerations.

RAR-MA encourages individuals of all backgrounds to apply for this position. Raising A Reader MA is an equal opportunity employer that is committed to creating a multicultural organization.  We celebrate the diversity of our world and our community, and we seek to build a team that reflects that strength.

Note: Vaccination is a condition of employment. RAR-MA has a vaccination policy that was created based on the information available from the CDC and local authorities as of 09/01/2021. We understand that information is evolving daily, and we reserve the right to amend and/or update the policy based on updated guidance from the CDC, local authorities, and/or business needs.

To apply: please send a resume, cover letter and 1–3-page writing sample to careers@raisingareaderma.org. Please include the email subject, “Development and Communications Manager application.” Please state where you learned of this opportunity.

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

 

COMMUNITY AMBASSADOR COORDINATOR

REPORTS TO: Senior Program Manager

START DATE: November 2021

Organizational Overview

Currently in Massachusetts, two thirds of children from low-income families enter kindergarten without the literacy skills they need to succeed. Raising A Reader MA (RAR-MA) directly addresses this need by providing the books and family education to ensure all children enter kindergarten with a foundation for success. Founded in 2006, RAR-MA annually serves approximately 7,500 children. Over the next few years, RAR-MA plans to deepen its impact in Massachusetts. We are seeking an experienced bilingual volunteer coordinator with a passion for our mission and expertise in community organizing to expand family representation, increase family engagement, and elevate family voices.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Statement

Diversity is at the core of our Mission, Vision, and Values. We are an inclusive organization, at all levels. To us, this signifies a commitment to being a workplace that fully embraces and reflects the different cultures, backgrounds, and viewpoints of our team and the community groups we serve. We seek qualified candidates who hold these values and help us to continue to recognize and celebrate the diversity among us, our community, and the world. RAR-MA is an equal opportunity employer.  We seek to broaden our team to reflect that strength, and we encourage individuals of all backgrounds to apply for this position.

Position Summary

At RAR-MA, we believe families and caregivers are the leaders in growing their child’s reading habits. For this reason, we created the Community Ambassador (CA) program to elevate the community voice and ensure our programming reaches families at their level of comfort. Community Ambassadors are a strong group of dedicated and talented parent, caregiver, and community volunteers who value early childhood literacy and believe in the mission of RAR-MA.

We are looking for a CA Coordinator that will lead our incredible group of volunteers who support RAR-MA programming across all the communities in which we work. The CA Coordinator is responsible for recruiting and maintaining relationships with current and future volunteers, coordinating and/or facilitating ongoing professional development opportunities, serving as a liaison with program staff for program initiatives/projects including grant deliverables, and ensuring that the growth of the CA program aligns with organizational goals.

The CA Coordinator will be managed by a Senior Program Manager and collaborate with all program team staff. This position is ideal for someone that is passionate about empowering families in early literacy skills and building relationships with diverse members of the communities in which we work. We particularly encourage candidates to apply that have shared life experiences representative of the Massachusetts Gateway cities which are the focus of  RAR-MA.

Key Responsibilities:

Manage the Community Ambassador Program: Recruit, onboard, and provide ongoing support to CAs. Develop sustainable recruitment and retention strategies for the CA Program. Support efforts to create a more diverse and inclusive organizational culture by making sure the voice of caregivers is taken into account in decisions that impact families in the communities in which we work.

Guide strategic growth and sustainability: Use metrics to report on progress and achievements. Track volunteers and volunteer activities. Document policies and processes by creating handbooks, training manuals, and other program materials. Collaborate with program/evaluation staff to ensure that the CA program is measured effectively and reaches agreed performance metrics. Support the Grants Manager as needed to understand the impact of the CA program.

Elevate the voice and skill set of Community Ambassadors:  Contribute to RAR-MA’s program design and delivery ensuring CAs’ skills and networks are valued and utilized to achieve organizational goals. Support the development of the CAs and provide training and mentorship opportunities volunteers in Dialogic Reading, outreach strategies, and facilitation skills. This includes planning and facilitating [monthly/quarterly] CA meetings to strengthen engagement. Identify partnership opportunities with community organizations to expand capacity for professional development, CA-led initiatives, and networking opportunities.

Build strong relationships between CAs and the program team: Be the main point of contact between the CA Program and the program team to identify projects and delegate activities based on CAs’ expertise and organizational needs.

Build program awareness and diversify/deepen family-facing communications: Support RAR-MA’s evolving online presence and content by working with Ambassadors to ensure external resources are targeting the needs in the community to help families better support children birth to age six. This may include supporting creation or direction of resources on our social media platforms, family resource page, or partner portal as needed and appropriate. Promote consistent messaging for the CA program and awareness among internal and external stakeholders.

Skills and Talents

  • You are passionate about the RAR-MA’s mission and have a strong commitment to improving the lives of young children and families.
  • You are committed to advance Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the workplace and community.
  • You have a compassionate and respectful communication style and practice cultural humility.
  • You have excellent interpersonal communication skills, including experience with group facilitation and public speaking.
  • You can inspire, motivate and encourage others to achieve a shared mission and goal.
  • You are an experienced volunteer coordinator who is excited about engaging with volunteers from diverse backgrounds and supporting their growth and leadership.
  • You are enthusiastic about helping others and have the skills needed to mentor and/or train a diverse set of volunteers and ensure all CAs are valued members of the team.
  • You are comfortable with technology, such as Office 365, GSuite, and Canva and are willing to teach others. Experience with Salesforce or another database platform is a plus.
  • You are willing to work effectively as a member of a team and to participate in activities that will contribute to the organization’s overall success.
  • You are a self-starter with a demonstrated ability to work autonomously and effectively without close supervision, yet have the judgement to ask for help when
  • You are outgoing and build relationships with ease.
  • You recognize the nuances of interpersonal dynamics and are comfortable managing differing opinions and strong personalities.

Required:

  • Bilingual in English and one other language- preferably a language prevalent in communities we serve
  • At least 2 years of experience in volunteer coordination or equivalent activities
  • Car and valid driver’s license

This position is full-time, based in Boston MA with an annual salary of $47,500.00 commensurate with experience. Work can be flexible to allow for office time and remote work, while recognizing that certain events, times, and needs will influence the exact schedule. RAR-MA offers a competitive benefits package, including holiday, sick, vacation and personal paid time, health, dental, and life insurance, and a flexible, collaborative environment as part of the overall compensation considerations.

Note:  Vaccination is a condition of employment. RAR-MA has a vaccination policy that was created based on the information available from the CDC and local authorities as of 09/01/2021.  We understand that information is evolving daily, and we reserve the right to amend and/or update the policy based on updated guidance from the CDC, local authorities, and/or business needs.

To apply: Please send a resume and cover letter describing how your skill set and experience meet the qualifications of the position and including how you heard about this opportunity, both in PDF format. Please include the email subject, “Community Ambassador Coordinator application” to careers@raisingareaderma.org

Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. RAR-MA staff will begin reviewing applications upon receipt.

Other Ways to Support Us

HOST A BOOK DRIVE

Businesses, schools and community groups often host new and used book drives to support Raising A Reader MA.

OUR AMAZON WISHLIST

Give the gift of literacy when you provide us with workshop supplies such as gift cards, flip chart paper, and books!

DOUBLE YOUR IMPACT WITH EMPLOYER MATCHING

Did you know most companies will match their employees’ contributions to our organization? After you make your donation, ask your employer about its matching gifts program. If your company is eligible, request a matching gift form from your employer, and send it completed and signed with your gift, or the process may be electronic. We will do the rest. The impact of your gift to this organization may be doubled or possibly tripled!

PLANNED GIVING WITH THE LEGACY OF LITERACY SOCIETY

Gifts through planned giving are meaningful ways to leave unrestricted gifts to Raising A Reader MA and to help create the next generation of readers and leaders. 

OTHER REMOTE OPPORTUNITIES

Assist in tasks such as translating documents (Arabic, Somali, Haitian Creole, Cape Verdean Creole, Spanish, and more needed), contributing to our monthly newsletter, researching new funder prospects, and graphic design.

DATA ENTRY

Assist in tasks such as entering family pre- and post- Red Bag implementation surveys, entering information forms, and entering partner surveys. Other administrative volunteer opportunities available, as well.