Community Development Specialist

at The Yonge Street Mission (view profile)
Location Toronto, Canada
Date Posted August 11, 2023
Category Other
Job Type Full-time


Yonge Street Mission (YSM) is a vibrant, non-profit Christian organization leading a collective movement to end chronic poverty in Toronto. Since 1896, we’ve worked to transform the lives of people living with poverty, going beyond immediate needs by offering wrap-around support via holistic programs and services, and a pathway which enables street-involved youth, families in need, adults experiencing poverty and vulnerable communities to move from surviving to thriving.

To make this happen, we are passionate about investing in the people we work with, and look for a diverse range of staff who are key for us to advance our mission: Christians who have a heart for neighbours in need, a desire to transform the lives of our community members, and who believe in treating everyone with dignity and respect.

If you are inspired by our vision and feel a true call to contribute to YSM’s work, we’d love to hear from you.

What We Offer:

As a staff member at YSM, some of the things you can look forward to include a values-based and highly collaborative and engaging work environment with a high value on staff’s mental health and well-being; meaningful, innovative and impactful work, with opportunities to make a difference in the lives of children, families, and the community. Our competitive Total Rewards compensation package also includes Group RRSP matching, annual leave and paid personal days, comprehensive health and dental care coverage, an Employee and Family Assistance Program that includes counselling services by Christian professionals, and numerous other perks.

The Opportunity:

We are seeking a Community Development Specialist focused on social transformation in the communities where YSM works. The successful candidate will represent YSM with key stakeholders in the community including resident leaders and local agency partners. They will work to discover opportunities in new neighbourhoods and establish YSM presence as a new partner, build relationships and partnerships with diverse stakeholders, build the capacity of community leaders through training, provide backbone support to key projects, and facilitate conversations for strategic partnerships and collaboration between stakeholders that will lead to transformative and collaborative initiatives based on a community development model. This position will work within the structure of YSM’s Community Development and leverage our existing services and external partnerships.


  • Support the YSM Community Development team and community-based groups to deliver on their mandates through capacity building and strategic partnerships
  • Champion the refinement and application of YSM Community Development tools through strategic partnerships and capacity building
  • Initiate and cultivate strong relationships with an atmosphere for active collaboration and synergy among key supporters, partners, and other community stakeholders toward the support of collectively-built strategies, exploring shared responsibilities, and coordinating sustainable delivery models
  • Build relationships and partnership opportunities with new stakeholders, including agencies, grassroots groups, and community leaders
  • Build capacity of community leaders and partners through sharing YSM tools via trainings and other
  • Support facilitation and co-facilitation of key conversations with diverse stakeholders. Support conflict resolution
  • Represent YSM at neighbourhood and network tables, facilitate and support strategic conversations with resident leaders and agency partners
  • Ability to review research materials as needed in order to participate and facilitate conversations with other stakeholders and to move initiatives forward
  • Recruit, train, and supervise volunteers, and other administrative reporting as necessary
  • Actively establish YSM's Christian presence and identity in the neighborhood selected to serve, by knowing and being known by the community


  • Post-secondary education combined with 3- 5 years’ experience or equivalent academic training in Asset Based Community/International Development, Partnership Brokering, Social Work, or Urban Studies
  • Self-starter with strong facilitation, community engagement, cross-cultural competence, partnership development, and neighbourhood organizing skills, as well as an ability to work with a high degree of independence
  • Excellent interpersonal skills with a strong ability to build partnerships, and strategically guide conversations
  • Strong project planning, organizing, and coordinating skills. Experience with project management
  • Ability to and experience working with complex materials translating them into community-friendly formats for the purpose of capacity building
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills with demonstrated ability to synthesize complex information for a variety of audiences
  • Ability to support groups towards shared goals and outcomes
  • Demonstrated ability to apply advanced knowledge related to the social, emotional and health-related barriers affecting vulnerable populations
  • Strong understanding of the factors and challenges contributing to poverty in Toronto
  • Strong understand of City of Toronto (COT) Community Development programs, practices, and policies. Experience working alongside COT and/or government and community agencies staff in Community Development is a strong asset.
  • A police check will be required. First Aid training is an asset
  • Demonstrated personal commitment to YSM’s principles of faith, mission and values

Deadline for Application: September 8, 2023

Start Date: ASAP

Link to Application:

While we appreciate all responses, only candidates under consideration will be contacted.

Learn more about YSM at

Date Posted: August 11, 2023