Port Family Advocate

About us

Founded in 1937, the mission of the Community Art Center is to cultivate an engaged community of youth whose powerful artistic voices transform their lives, their neighborhoods and their worlds. The Community Art Center has propelled close to 8000 Cambridge youth to develop themselves artistically, academically and socially. We do this by providing a combined total of approximately 3000 program hours per year through three program areas the School Age Child Care Program, our Teen Programs (including Teen Media and Public Art) and our Community Programs which include the Do It Your Damn Self!! National Youth Film Festival – the oldest youth curated film festival in the country. The Community Art Center’s arts education programs and public art initiatives promote knowledge of self, connection to history, acknowledgement of place, and expression of differences and shared values. During a time of rapid change and economic inequality, the Community Art Center generates art that redistributes agency, promotes a right to co-create culture and allows communities to build a collective future.

What we seek

Port Arise Institute is a multi-year training and community building program that honors the cultural, neighborhood and individual assets of families living in and around Cambridge’s Port neighborhood. The Institute uses an innovative combination of placemaking/keeping and 2-Generation strategies to provide opportunities, leverage neighborhood assets and address ongoing needs. The overall goals of Port Arise are to:

  • To provide opportunities for growth to people living in and around the Port

  • Address ongoing basic needs of vulnerable families

  • Give community members mechanisms to drive the development of future neighborhood services

  • Leverage neighborhood assets by streamlining and connecting current resources available to families

Port Arise Institute is led by three historic community organizations: Community Art Center, Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House and Tutoring Plus of Cambridge. As Lead Partner for Port Arise, Community Art Center will provide supervision for the Port Family Advocate.

The Port Family Advocate reports to the Executive Director of the Community Art Center and will work closely with the leadership teams of the Margaret Fuller Neighborhood House and Tutoring Plus of Cambridge. They will provide coordination and leadership of the Port Arise Institute, which recently entered its second year of a three year grant from the Cambridge Community Benefits Fund. Throughout the duration of the project, we will continue to seek funding to continue this role beyond the three year grant. In this second year of the project, the Port Family Advocate will focus their time on: 1) stabilizing vulnerable families through case management, 2) building community leadership and 3) building community skills. During this time, much of the work of Port Arise will focus on COVID-19 recovery.

Key Areas of Responsibility

  • Case Management for Port Arise Cohort including monthly coaching and support for current cohort families (10 families); a second cohort (additional 10 families) will start in September 2021 and will require initial intake and action planning; case management will use a  two generational approach to addressing the needs of the whole family through referrals and support

  • Building Community Leadership through development and coordination of the Port Arise Community Advisory Committee, an existing community leadership group who has been involved in the design of the Port Arise Institute

  • Building Community Networks in order to develop a web of referral and support services that allow families to tap into existing resources and/or service providers

  • Building Community Skills through the development of the Port Arise Training Series to be launched in September 2021 and by referring cohort families to external training opportunities as appropriate

  • Community Outreach and Engagement through recruitment of families, dissemination of a community wide needs assessment, and the coordination of community events including the annual Port Forum

  • Program Administration and Evaluation including monitoring programmatic budget according to provided parameters, tracking case management in Planstreet database, and providing data as needed to the City of Cambridge Community Benefits Fund evaluators HRiA

Additional Qualifications

Candidates must be committed to the goals of Port Arise and to the collective goals of the three Port Arise partners. As a member of the Community Art Center staff, they must also be committed to the Art Center’s organizational values which are: We believe in the power of young people. We believe in the power of artistic expression. We believe in taking care of ourselves and each other. We believe in creating positive change in our neighborhood and beyond.


Bachelor’s degree required, master’s degree in related field preferred.


  • Minimum 5 years working in human services, case management or community organizing

  • Experience in the planning and successful implementation of activities that promote a combination of mental health, learning, leadership and community based activism

  • Experience working in environments that are culturally and ethnically diverse

  • Experience working in partnership with families in order to help them meet their goals

  • Experience in community organization and/or training and facilitation

  • Knowledge of and experience with community based organizations, and knowledge of Cambridge community is desired


  • Works well with others, is accountable and trustworthy and adapts and responds to change

  • Has a consistent and grounded presence and moves easily between detailed and global perspectives

  • Culturally aware and committed to equitable practice; understands youth, family and community dynamics

  • Participates actively in the field and is able to build mutually beneficial relationships

  • Highly organized, detail-oriented and able to prioritize competing assignments and deliver quality results on deadline

  • Communicates effectively across multiple sectors and with people of different backgrounds and levels of authority

  • Demonstrated ability to coach effectively, hold people accountable, work as part of a team and delegate appropriately

  • Interacts positively and empowers others by offering maximum voice and choice and responding to priorities articulated by participants.

  • Takes initiative and is enterprising – willing to experiment and try new methods


$45,000.00 - $50,000.00 per year



COVID-19 Considerations:

Community Art Center employees are currently working in-person and operating some programs virtually during the COVID-19 pandemic. We are following state guidelines, and have strict capacity restrictions around building access. The space is cleaned daily and masks are required at all times. The nature of the Port Family Advocate role allows for some flexibility; however, the right candidate will be expected to spend at least two days per week in-person in their Cambridge office.

How to Apply

To apply, please submit a cover letter and resume to Erin Muirhead McCarty at erinm@communityartcenter.org. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed. Preference will be given to applications received by May 7.

Community Art Center is an equal opportunity employer