Program Associate - Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program
United Way Silicon Valley - San Jose, CA

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Job Summary

Are you looking for a position to use your project management and administrative skills to contribute to making positive change in the community? Do you enjoy working with a team of dedicated volunteers working to create greater economic opportunities for low-income working families in Silicon Valley? The Earn It! Keep It! Save It! (EKS) Coalition is a United Way Silicon Valley-led group of community members supporting 50+ local VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) sites. This effort is carried out annually in partnership with the IRS, nonprofits, libraries, schools, churches and other community-based organizations throughout Santa Clara County.

The Federally authorized VITA program provides low-income working families with free tax preparation, assistance with filing tax credit claims, and information about financial education and other forms of assistance. This program supports United Way Silicon Valley's (UWSV) goal of helping families with young children achieve economic stability. The VITA Program Associate is a full-time position providing strategic program support and contributing to the effective and successful implementation of this work. In 2013, more than 6,800 taxpayers were helped, returning over $8M in tax credits and refunds to local people.

This is an ideal position for someone who prefers a work schedule concurrent with the traditional academic year, and take their summers off. Funding to support this position is expected to be renewed annually – though there is no guarantee. Some evening and weekend hours can be expected, primarily during December, January and February.

Key Responsibilities:
  • Support the continued
    • development of a sustainable volunteer program to expand the capacity of the Santa Clara County VITA program.
  • Organize the recruitment, training, and successful deployment of 300+ volunteers to work at more than 50 VITA sites throughout Santa Clara County during tax season.
  • Communicate with the existing network of EKS-VITA volunteers.
  • Outreach and recruit new volunteers using a variety of resources and strategies.
  • Provide primary staff support for the Fall/Winter training and deployment season of EKS-VITA volunteers.
  • Develop an understanding of current organization and structure of EKS-Santa Clara County Coalition and local VITA program.
  • Identify new program partners and potential VITA locations where assistance can be provided to individuals and families who may not be fully benefiting from the EITC (Earned Income Tax Credit) and other tax credits for low-income earners.
  • Work with the IRS SPEC staff to develop prospective new VITA sites within the community.
  • Work with partner non-profit and other community organizations to develop their capacity to become high-functioning VITA sites.
  • Build a foundation for interested organizations to become VITA locations in future years.
  • Conduct county-wide outreach to increase community awareness of the free income tax preparation sites functioning throughout the area.
  • Attend community meetings providing information about function and location of VITA sites.
  • Conduct marketing outreach through radio, television, and online media to communicate availability of the program and its benefits to the community.
  • Collaborate with UWSV Marketing Director and 211 Data Base Staff to enhance community awareness activities and access to VITA.
  • Cultivate and maintain strategic relationships with EKS Coalition members and other organizations, programs, businesses, local and national partners which support local VITA program goals including, but not limited to, community based organizations, municipal and county agencies, and IRS SPEC staff.
  • Provide technical assistance and support to coalition partners as needed.
  • Demonstrate the highest standards of personal integrity, teamwork, and accountability.
  • Provide coordination support for the Community Building Department as needed.
  • Other duties as assigned by management.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
  • Experience with volunteer training and volunteer coordination
  • Strong commitment to excellence, a desire to improve lives and a high level of energy
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Strong project and event management skills
  • Strong relationship building skills
  • Strong organizational and time management skills with high attention to detail
  • Advanced computer skills including MS Office (Word, Outlook, PowerPoint, Excel, Publisher)
  • Ability to multi-task
  • Ability to work, make decisions, and access resources independently.
  • Availability to work varied hours, including evenings and weekends, and travel locally as well as throughout the region as needed.
  • Ability to work effectively as a member on a cross-functional team
  • Ability to type at a keyboard comfortably through a regular work shift
  • Ability to lift at least 25 pounds
  • Valid driver's license and access to car with current and valid insurance.
Experience and Education
  • BA/BS degree in a relevant field preferred.
  • Experience in the field of non-profit or volunteer program management preferred.
  • Fluency in Spanish highly desired.
  • Experience with social networking sites (e.g., Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook) is desired.
  • Demonstrated track record of setting and meeting goals.
United Way Silicon Valley is an Equal Opportunity Employer and encourages applications from bilingual and multilingual candidates.

Job offers at UWSV are contingent upon submission to, and successful completion of, background checks and drug/alcohol screens.

EarnIt!KeepIt!$aveIt!

Continually building on community efforts already underway, this Santa Clara County-wide EITC/VITA collaboration works to develop additional resources to assist more local families in filing their taxes for free -- and to be directed to financial resources, services, and opportunities. The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Care Tax Credits are a valuable benefit for many working families. The coalition reflects a partnership between the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and numerous community, government and business groups, and incorporates the Bay Area region-wide name of Earn It Keep It Save It. Each year we strive to grow these efforts so that more families will be able to file their taxes quickly and for free while receiving online information coupled with person-to-person advice on how to open a bank account, save for college, get out of debt, and family budgeting support.

The VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) Program offers free tax help to low- to moderate-income people (generally, $51k and below) to prepare their tax returns. Certified volunteers sponsored by local organizations receive training to prepare basic tax returns in communities across the country. VITA sites are located at community and neighborhood centers, libraries, schools, and other convenient locations.

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