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Muscular Dystrophy Association

Recreation and Community Programs Specialist

Chicago, IL
Expiration Date: June 13, 2018


OurPurpose: AtMDA, we are fighting to free individuals — and the families who love them —from the harmful effects of muscle-debilitating diseases so they can livelonger and grow stronger.  

Our Values are ourstrength:  We believe in MUSCLE:     

Mission:  We’re driven to accelerate progress forfamilies and muscle health.

Understanding:  We’re attentive to our constituent’s needsand each other’s.

Stewardship:  By investing precious resources wisely, we drivethe best possible outcomes.

Collaboration:  We foster win-win partnerships and buildcommunities.

Learning:  Knowledge powers our success and empowers ourpeople.

Excellence:  We strive to do our best and exceedconstituents’ expectations.


Position Description: 

The Recreation and CommunityPrograms Specialist will be reporting to the Director of Recreation and CommunityPrograms. This individual supports all efforts for MDA’s Mission Programs,including MDA’s Summer Camp program. The Thrive Program Specialist recognizesthe importance of camp and recreation programs in the organization. This roleis responsible for supporting all aspects of the Mission Programs platform,including centralization of processes, day to day oversight, programplanning, and interaction with families, volunteers and communitystakeholders.  This position partners with many programson the mission team and provides ongoing support to Family Care Specialistsacross the organization.



  • Support the director with efforts to pilotunique programs and opportunities targeting all MDA populations andstakeholders in recreation and community program initiatives
  • Assist with design and implementationof programs that meet the needs and interests of the target populations andensure their delivery in a safe and high-quality manner.
  • Manage annual camp contract process forsummer camp facilities
  • Collaborate towards the development andimplementation of national camp curriculum.
  • Remain current with information on thedevelopmental needs of youth and young adults.
  • Annually seek and analyze input fromyouth, families, and staff regarding the quality, safety, and enjoyment of theprogram and staff.
  • Collaborate with Program Development,other mission teams, income development, and marketing and communication teamsto ensure across organization stakeholder engagement.
  • Conduct ongoing facilities assessmentof both current and potential locations.
  • Manage the systematic approach to database management for campers, families, and volunteers
  • Work collaboratively with internal andexternal groups to ensure the enhancement of the camp operation.
  • Develop national training program forstaff, camp volunteers, and medical staff.



  • Detail minded: Demonstrate accuracy and thoroughness; monitor own work to ensurequality and organization.  Strongattention to detail while multitasking.
  • Communication Skills: Clearly and persuasively communicate,listen and seek clarifications; participate in meetings, write clearly andinformatively. Initiative - Demonstrate ability to work independently and aspart of a team; exhibit sound and accurate judgment, including prioritizationand time management skills. Able to provide support to multiple team members simultaneously.
  • Computer Skills: Advanced level proficiency with MicrosoftOffice Suite and Google Docs, ability to learn and adapt to new technologies.
  • Drive: Motivated to develop and exceed businessplans and to clearly set expectations and goals.  Establish and maintain collaborativerelationships.
  • Flexibility: Able to multitask in a changing workenvironment.  Manage competing demandsand unexpected events. Willing to change approach to best fit the situation.
  • Initiative: Demonstrate ability to work independentlyand as part of a team; exhibit sound and accurate judgment, includingprioritization and time management skills. Able to provide support to multipleteam members simultaneously.
  • Problem Solving: Conduct appropriate analysis and makeclear, consistent and timely decisions.
  • Professionalism: Work well in a fast-paced environment;treat others with respect and consideration; accept responsibility for ownactions; positive/upbeat attitude.




  • Bachelor’s degree required
  • 3-5 years of experience in similar role
  • Knowledge of management principles andevaluation techniques related to programs that involve a team of volunteers
  • Experience in volunteering locallyand/or internationally
  • Prior camp experience preferred
  • Demonstrated capability to conductone’s self in a calm and professional demeanor when dealing with the publicand/or with difficult situations
  • Demonstrated capability to effectivelycommunicate orally and in writing
  • Ability to effectively manage a widearray of tasks, projects, and responsibilities
  • Ability to work productively in anunstructured environment with frequent interruptions
Interest Area 
Project Management
Position Type 
Minimum Degree Requirements 
College Degree
Position Level