Rise Parent Advocate Training Program: Frequently Asked Questions

Please note: This information is specific to the role of Parent Advocates employed by foster and preventive agencies in NYC. It does not apply to Parent Advocates working at legal agencies or in other locations.  

Q. Who is eligible to participate in the Rise Parent Advocate Training Program?

A. The Rise Parent Advocate Training Program is for parents living in New York City who have been directly impacted by ACS and have been hired to work as a Parent Advocate in a foster or preventive agency. (The Rise Parent Advocate Training Program was formerly called the CORE Program.)

Q. Does Rise employ Parent Advocates?

A. No, Rise does not employ Parent Advocates. Rise provides training and support to Parent Advocates employed by foster and preventive agencies in NYC. 

Q. Who can apply for open Parent Advocate job opportunities in foster and preventive agencies? 

A. Please see agency job postings for specific requirements and details. Parent Advocates may have been impacted as a parent by an investigation, preventive services, the foster system, kinship care and/or termination of your parental rights. Your case must be closed for one year for your application to be considered for Parent Advocate job opportunities at preventive and foster agencies in 2022. 

Q. How can I learn more about the Parent Advocate role and training? 

A. Rise is holding a two-day Parent Advocate Mini-Retreat on August 10 and 11, 2022. We invite NYC parents impacted by ACS to attend to learn more about the Parent Advocate role and job opportunities, hear from Parent Advocates and participate in an introductory training about Rise’s 90-day model to support faster family reunification. To sign up, RSVP to Rise Parent Advocate Training Coordinator Teresa Marrero at teresa-m@risemagazine.org

If you can’t attend the Mini-Retreat but are an NYC parent interested in learning more about the Parent Advocate role and job opportunities, please contact Teresa at Teresa-m@risemagazine.org

Q. What is the purpose of the Parent Advocate Training Program? What will it prepare me to do?

A.  As Rise works toward our vision, we recognize that there are parents coming into the system or involved with the system right now who value the information and support provided by trained Parent Advocates. This program equips Parent Advocates with knowledge, tools, resources, skills and peer relationships to support parents with:

  • Navigating the system to reunify more quickly
  • Navigating the trauma and emotions of their case
  • Strengthening self-advocacy skills
  • Building a support network and connections to resources—so that once families are reunified, they do not re-enter the system

The Parent Advocate Training Program will also strengthen your understanding of your core responsibilities as a newly-hired Parent Advocate and build your skills to address conflicts and challenges you may experience within your role.

Upon program completion, graduates receive a certificate. After graduation, we encourage all Parent Advocates to stay involved at Rise and to continue to attend biweekly support circles. 

Q. What are some of the core components of the Rise Parent Advocate Training Program?

A.  The Parent Advocate Training Program includes community-building and reflection sessions, knowledge-building workshops and writing and public speaking workshops.  

The training series covers a variety of topics, including: 

  • Rise visiting and service planning TIPS
  • Rise 90-day model to support reunification
  • Power of parent advocates and history of the parent advocacy movement 
  • History of child welfare
  • Parents’ legal rights
  • Trauma, toxic stress and self-care
  • Introduction to restorative justice circle keeping practice

Advocates are trained to use Rise TIPS as a tool to build relationships with parents and hold difficult conversations, as well as to train parents to negotiate and advocate for themselves. 

In the writing workshops, Parent Advocates reflect on and write about how their values and experiences shape their work and they also engage in resource mapping. Through the public speaking workshops, Parent Advocates develop skills and strategies for engaging mindfully, using their voice and body, maintaining calm and focus and connecting with their audience, self and message. 

Parent Advocates are also encouraged to participate in additional optional training opportunities through Rise’s public community training calendar.

Q. I have been hired by an agency as a Parent Advocate already. How do I sign up for the Rise Parent Advocate Training Program?

A. If you are a Parent Advocate currently working at a foster or preventive agency, please reach out directly to Teresa at teresa-m@risemagazine.org. You can also ask your agency supervisor for Rise’s training information. 

Q. How long is the program?

A. The program is four weeks long and runs twice a year. (There is a Fall cohort and a Spring cohort.) The next session will take place September through October 2022. Graduation will take place in October 2022. 

Q. Will the Fall 2022 program take place in person or online?

A. The Fall 2022 Parent Advocate program will take place online. 

Q. How does Rise provide ongoing support to Parent Advocates? 

A.  Rise provides online support circles for Parent Advocates every other Friday at 2:00 pm. The Parent Advocate support group is an opportunity for Rise Parent Advocate Training Program graduates to continue to engage in peer-to-peer support and build a network of resources. It is a space where Parent Advocates can share their experiences and receive and offer guidance to support each other in addressing challenging situations as they arise. We also provide resources on the Rise website that Parent Advocates can use in their work. 

Q. How is the Parent Advocate Training Program funded?

A. The Parent Advocate Training Program is funded by NYC’s Administration for Children Services (ACS). The program is part of Rise’s contracted work to recruit and train Parent Advocates and scale the Parents Empowering Parents Initiative (formerly known as PSP) so that all NYC foster agencies include Parent Advocates with lived experience who directly support parents with open cases.

Q. The Parent Advocate role is not a fit for me at this time. How else can I be involved at Rise?

A. We encourage you to learn more about our other programs at Rise and get involved!

To stay updated about opportunities at Rise as they become available: 

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