Hands of Hope is Casa de Esperanza’s internship program which recruits recent college graduates and other highly qualified young adults, from throughout the United States. These interns have a desire to help abused, neglected and HIV positive children through work with our agency. This program brings together approximately 25 young adults annually to live and work with some of our society’s most vulnerable children. The Residential Program is the backbone of Casa de Esperanza, and at its core are the Hands of Hope Interns. Hands of Hope Interns commit one year to live and work with these vulnerable children in the Residential Program’s agency foster homes. Responsibilities include daily care of the children, household management, and the coordination of medical appointments and therapy sessions. The Hands of Hope Interns also work with caseworkers, psychological staff and community volunteers on a routine basis to ensure that the children in placement receive the highest quality of care.
Ensuring the safety of the children in placement and meeting their emotional and developmental needs are the primary responsibilities of the Hands of Hope Interns. There is only one reason a child ever comes to Casa de Esperanza – because they are not safe. Almost all children arrive having experienced trauma, neglect or chaos in their short lives. Their need for safety, stability and reassurance is immediate and often intense. The children require a great deal of time, energy and emotional resources from the house parents. For this reason, the Hands of Hope Interns participate in an extensive 2 week training program to enhance their abilities to meet the needs of the children. We strive to educate all interns on the importance of early intervention when working with emotionally and behaviorally challenged, and often medically fragile, children. The skills cultivated while participating in the Hands of Hope internship program are excellent life and work experiences for individuals pursuing careers in social work, medicine, psychology, education, public health, non-profit management, and social justice.
• At least 21 years old
• Willingness to make a one-year commitment
• College degree preferred
• Ability to establish and maintain positive relationships with others
• Flexibility and Patience
• Good general health, with a high energy level, and able to lift 35-40 pounds
• Valid U.S. Driver’s License
A criminal history and background check of each Hands of Hope Intern will be completed prior to placement with the agency.
• To care for the children placed in your home
• To promote skills to develop healthy attachments
• To participate as a team member in implementing the children’s Plan of Service and therapeutic regime
• To complete household duties including, but not limited to: cooking, cleaning, laundry and maintaining the house, and vehicles
• To transport and participate in medical and therapy appointments
• To support the children’s primary attachment to biological parents
• To complete all necessary paperwork in a timely manner
• To communicate regularly with supervisors regarding the welfare of the children
• To complete 20 hours of ongoing training on an annual basis
• To follow the policies of Casa de Esperanza at all times
Typically, four Hands of Hope Interns live in an agency foster home with four or five children under the age of six. One of the interns will be licensed as the foster parent. Together, the Hands of Hope Interns share responsibility for providing 24-hour care to the children in the home.
Compensation and Benefits
• Monthly stipend of $600/month
• Health Insurance
• Life Insurance
• Two weeks paid vacation per year
• Successful Completion of Internship Award