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Residential Youth Counselor (sailing-based foster home)

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Residential Change Agent

SailFuture’s Change Agents provide love, support, and accountability to six youth living in a large family foster home. 

Three Change Agents and a Program Director co-parent six youth with the support of a licensed USCG Captain, Foster Care Case Manager, Certified Teacher, and a mental health counselor.

Alongside a Captain, Change Agents lead our 6 kiddos on two 50-day sailing expeditions per year, one through the Caribbean and one up the Eastern U.S. to Maine (no prior sailing experience required).

Onboard, students work as apprentices with defined roles and participate in service learning and experiential education projects.

Meeting the needs of 6 teenage boys is a lot like conducting an orchestra;. It requires an enormous amount of teamwork, planning, and leadership. 

You can expect the typical 'parenting' responsibilities: waking the boys up for school, helping them prepare breakfast, and getting them from Point A to Point B.

On some days you'll be assisting the academic team as a tutor or vocational instructor, teaching geometry through woodworking or physics through sailing. 

You'll lead workshops and trainings, like helping the boys prepare resumes, conduct a job search, and get their first job. 

Throughout it all, the boys will come to you for emotional support and guidance. They'll scream in your face when they're mad, and cry in your arms in their moments of vulnerability. 

You'll manage chaotic and stressful situations, like breaking up fights or de-escalating a child who in that moment wants to harm themselves.

You'll become their support system. In this position, you have the opportunity to become one of the only people that's ever stuck around long enough for them to trust. You'll have the opportunity to fundamentally alter their life trajectory.


  • Lead youth through (2) 50-day international sailing journeys through the Caribbean and Eastern United States per year
  • Work with mental health, education, and case management teams to ensure consistency across youth’s individual treatment and case plans
  • Assist with with job searches and applications
  • Teach basic life skills: laundry, cooking, cleaning, etc.
  • Home management: maintenance, landscaping, etc. 
  • Grocery shopping
  • Daily room checks for cleanliness
  • Nightly bed checks 
  • Administer and log medication
  • Schedule medical and dental appointments
  • Assist with general transportation needs
  • Assist with school operations and academic instruction
  • Assist with job training operations and vocational instruction
  • Work with the mental health, education, and residential teams to create individual treatment plans for all youth
  • Implement treatment plans and coordinate with all other teams
  • Other responsibilities as determined by the Program Director


- Team player committed to doing whatever it takes for youth in their care

- Sufficient life experience for the youth in your care to view you as a parental figure

- Desire to make a lifestyle commitment

- Experience working with at-risk youth, specifically teenagers 

- Excellent communicator and problem solver

- Passion for adventure

- Sailing experience a plus, but not required


$44k - $50k Total Annual Salary (Depending on Experience)

  • $25,000 - $32,000 annual stipend (Depending on Experience) 
  • $250 monthly health insurance contribution
  • Housing Provided ($1,000 / month)
  • Most Meals Provided ($250 / month)
  • 401k with 6% employer match

Work-Life Balance Supports
Raising foster children requires many sacrifices and the financial compensation rarely matches the time and effort you put in. Here are a few things we do to support you:

- 4 days on / 3 days off schedule

- (2) 4-day vacations during each sailing expedition throughout the Caribbean and Eastern United States

- 10 days paid vacation per year

- Offsite respite housing 

- Flexible team structure designed to support one-another 

- Access to SailFuture's fleet of sailboats and power boats for personal use

Our Commitment to You:

This will be one of the hardest “jobs” you ever have. Our kids and your colleagues will push and inspire you to grow personally and professionally in ways that few other settings can. 

We’re a small organization and treat each other more like family than colleagues. We live together, travel together, work together, and play together.

If you are invited to join our team, we are making a commitment to help you become the best social innovator that you can be. We are committed to supporting you in the present to provide our kids the highest quality of care possible, and in the future by equipping you with the skills, resources, and connections to prepare you for where you go next. 

Change Agents leave this role with invaluable management, leadership, and conflict mediation skills. 

As an entrepreneurial social venture, you will have the opportunity to take ownership in your work and your outcomes. You have the opportunity to learn and practice many of the skills necessary to succeed as an entrepreneur.

You will learn to manage and navigate extremely stressful situations with grace and clarity.

Or, know someone who would be a perfect fit? Let them know!

Perks and Benefits

  • 401k with 3-6% employer match

  • Paid Time Off and Sick Days

  • $250 Monthly Health Insurance Contribution

  • Access to sailboats, powerboats, and kayaks

  • Part of dynamic and integrated teams

  • Flexible Work Schedules

Who We Are

We're a small but mighty agency with a 'whatever it takes' mentality.

Our approach to social work is complex and requires dynamic, passionate leaders to bring all their skills to the table.

We're committed to each other as much as we are to our kids, and protect the family dynamic within our motley crew.


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