New Beginnings Counseling Center Internship

Organization: New Beginnings Counseling Center

New Beginnings Counseling Center is a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide quality, affordable counseling, shelter, case management, and education that strengthens our community and provides support services for clients to lead healthy and productive lives. We offer these services to homeless and low-income individuals and families in Santa Barbara County regardless of their ability to pay. We were founded as a night counseling clinic 50 years ago and reincorporated to New Beginnings Counseling Center in 2000. Through four core programs—our Community Counseling Clinic, Safe Parking Program ® and Rapid Re-Housing, Life Skills Parenting and Education, and Supportive Services for Veteran Families—we provide comprehensive services and ongoing support to ensure that vulnerable individuals in our community can move toward emotional and socio-economic self-sufficiency. Our agency is long-experienced in sustaining core programs that serve extremely low-income people in need of housing stabilization and mental health services. In the fiscal year ending June 30, 2018, our agency served 1,733 unduplicated individuals, and we housed 166 individuals and families. We also reach more than 300 individuals each week.

Project: Communications Fellow

We have been extraordinarily active and successful in raising awareness of our agency, programs, homelessness, and mental health across the U.S. We are often contacted by municipalities and others about our Safe Parking training manual and the specifics for the Safe Parking Program ®, known nationwide for its success in serving the vehicular homeless. In the summer of 2018, Safe Parking was featured on HBO’s VICE News Tonight, which focused on the increasing number of Americans forced to live in their vehicles. New Beginnings also was featured on regional KEYT News in September and in additional features and media exposure in publications, such as The Los Angeles Times, in People and Rolling Stone magazines, CNN, Larry King Live, NPR, and ABC.

While we have been very successful at gaining national attention, we have a need for promoting our programs and the impact of our work more locally in our community and through our digital assets using content marketing. Both stories/testimonials and outcomes data are vital elements for our marketing, communications, and fundraising efforts. The Communications Fellow will help New Beginnings demonstrate leadership in sharing meaningful data and storytelling toward its mission.

The Communications Fellow will help articulate the impact of New Beginnings’ work by leveraging data about its programs. The fellow will compile data and determine ways to measure and articulate the savings made to our community as a result of our programs. For example, how much money do we save governmental agencies (e.g., police departments) in costs each year due to our Safe Parking Program? The fellow will conduct interviews with these types of municipal departments and strategize methods for measuring the financial impact of our work. The fellow will also help us clearly communicate this impact to our donors and constituents in our media channels, newsletters, and other collateral.

The Communications Fellow will also enhance New Beginnings’ digital presence using content marketing strategies. The fellow will help advise us in our digital marketing strategy and plan, expand our digital presence, sharpen our messaging, and enhance our storytelling capabilities. Working closely with our Development Coordinator, the Communications Fellow will provide his or her expertise in strategic projects and will be tasked with creating and editing specific collateral, spanning website pages, social media posts, PSAs, and more. The fellow will help to create and implement SEO best practices, research keywords, and design content that will make us favorable to search engines.

The specific duties of the position are flexible and will be influenced by the fellow’s desires, interests, and experience and the evolving needs of the organization.

Internship objectives:

  • Identify and implement (digital) tools and practices to optimize New Beginnings’ use of transformative client stories and program outcomes data to communicate the broad impacts of agency programs (e.g. numbers served as well as lives transformed)
  • Gain professional experience in content marketing and digital marketing, while serving our most vulnerable community members, to enhance a broad range of career paths
  • Contribute capacity and graduate perspective in a fast-paced, collaborative, and independent work environment
  • Experience and learn fundamentals of nonprofit organization administration and funding

Role duties and opportunities:

  • Conduct research regarding how much we save governmental agencies in costs due to our programs and determine methods for measuring the financial impact of our work
  • Contribute to a long-term digital marketing plan and strategy
  • Define ways to improve the framing of client stories
  • Determine gaps and create strategic content for a variety of channels
  • Help envision and implement social media strategy
  • Continuously collaborate with New Beginnings’ staff and leadership team
  • Identify and create brand-accurate visual graphics to complement stories and outcomes data; may be templates to reuse for web, newsletters, annual report, fundraising appeals, and other media applications (including photos, pictograms, infographics, etc.)

The Communications Fellow will begin on June 17, 2019 and complete the internship in 200 total hours in either ten or 20 weeks, at a timeline to be determined by the fellow’s schedule and agency business hours.