What is the deadline for the application?
We accept and process applications on a rolling basis, so there is no deadline. We are unable to accept applications more than 11 months in advance of your intended starting month.
When should I submit my application?
We typically welcome new groups of Hands of Hope House Parents in January, June, and August of each year. We always suggest that applicants submit their applications as soon as they decide they are seriously considering the program, as the application process can take some time. Some applicants apply a year in advance of their preferred starting month to increase the likelihood of being offered a placement.
What is the application process and how long does it take?
How long the application process takes will depend on how quickly we receive required information from you, and how quickly your references respond. Once you submit your application, we will request your references. We need a minimum of five references returned, at least one of which must be from a family member, before we can move to the following step. Next, we will schedule a phone or Zoom interview with you. Once your interview is complete, your entire file will be reviewed by the Residential Recruitment Team and a decision will be made on whether or not you will be offered a position. The Residential Team typically will review and make a decision within two weeks of your interview.
What happens next if I am offered and accept a position?
If you are offered and accept a position, the next step will be to fill out Part II of the application which provides us with identifying information so we can begin the Background Check process. The State of Texas requires multiple types of background checks, including Child Abuse and Neglect Registry checks which must be done in each state you have lived in for the last 5 years. This process is often the slowest part of the process and can take up to 12 weeks for some states to return the required documentation. Therefore, if you are able, we strongly encourage applicants to submit applications at least four months in advance. Please note that all employment offers at Casa de Esperanza are contingent upon the applicant completing a physical examination by a licensed physician, physician’s assistant, or nurse practitioner AND successfully passing all background checks and a pre-employment drug screen.
Do I need to have a driver’s license?
While a lack of valid driver’s license will not prevent us from hiring a strongly qualified candidate, it is definitely preferred. The role of Hands of Hope House Parent involves a great deal of transportation of children to appointments. Generally, a home can support only one Hands of Hope House Parent without a license, as this places a greater driving burden on the other House Parents.
I am on a Student Visa. Can I apply?
Candidates on a student visa are welcome to apply, as long as they have active employment authorization. Casa will not sponsor work authorization for any applicants.
What does a typical day look like?
The day-to-day picture can vary greatly from week to week and from house to house depending on the ages, medical needs, emotional needs and behaviors of the children in your home. However, each home in the Casa de Esperanza Neighborhood is on a similar schedule which is arranged around the children’s eating and sleeping routines. House Parents will do everything that typical parents do to raise children and run a household. House Parents provide primary direct care, as well as taking their children to doctor and therapy appointments and transporting children to visits with their birth parents. House Parents determine age-appropriate activities to engage in with the children throughout the day in order to help the children make progress toward their developmental goals. Much of the day is spent playing with the children, both inside and outside, but direct child care also encompasses changing diapers, giving baths, making meals, feeding babies and cleaning up constantly to stay ahead of your very active children. As the children are in foster care, documentation of activities, appointments, and progress is part of the daily routine as well.
I can’t commit for a year. Can I do nine months? Six months? Three months?
The Residential Program is built around the children’s need for stability, predictability and healthy attachment. Therefore, we greatly prefer a one year commitment as that is what is healthiest for the children in our care and how the program functions at its best. While shorter commitments are allowed on a limited basis, one year commitments are preferred if possible.
Can I apply if I am out of state?
Yes! In fact, the majority of our House Parents come to us from other states.
Can I have another job/take classes while I am in the program?
Due to the intensive nature of the work, this job is simply not compatible with having another job or taking classes. Your first commitment must be to the children and what they need to survive and thrive. Your schedule will be in constant flux because the needs of the children change and the children in your house will change throughout your year. As such, House Parents are not able to take classes or have an additional job while working with us.
Can I participate if I have children of my own?
Unfortunately, this position is not compatible with those who have children of their own who still live at home with them, as you are required to live on-site and we do not allow other children into the Neighborhood. However, if you are interested in being involved with the work that Casa does, you may be interested in becoming a weekly volunteer instead.
My major seems unconventional for this program. Should I still apply?
We accept applicants from all different educational backgrounds into our program. While some majors occur more often in our program (Psychology, Pre-Med, Social Work, Early Childhood, etc.), we have had very successful Hands of Hope House Parents from a wide variety of majors. What is most important to us is that you are passionate about the work that we do and are able to live and work well with children and other House Parents. We are more interested in your attitude, your work ethic, your interest in social justice issues and your love for children than we are interested in your major area of study.