The Message Trust: Prison Team Leader

The Message Trust
Please note: this opportunity closing date has passed and may not be available any more.
Opportunity closing date: 
Saturday, 6 December, 2014
Opportunity type: 

We are looking for a passionate, dedicated and competent leader to head up our prison ministry in Cape Town. This is key leadership position within The Message Trust that requires strong networking skills, initiative and being able to grow a department. Join our growing team!

Prison Ministry

Job Description:

Hours: Full Time
Job Title: Prison Team Leader
Location: Cape Town
Start Date: 1 January 2015
Responsible to: Operations Director

Summary of main purpose of the job:

This is a key role, leading a team committed to working with young people in Juvenile Offender Institutions. Then, once released, to see the young people impact the community for good and to see them being given purpose, hope and opportunities to reach their full potential in God.

Main duties and responsibilities:

  • To lead, manage and grow the prison operational team including aftercare, prison workers and volunteers;
  • To develop a strong working relationship with the Department of Correctional Services management, regional chaplaincy of Corrections and other relevant partners;
  • Secure the service level agreements for Message in Prison activities with the individual prisons or the regional and national governing bodies;
  • To ensure the delivery of the service level agreement and the delivery of activities set out in the business plan ensuring all targets are met;
  • To oversee all activities in the prisons including our job readiness, entrepreneur, evangelistic programmes;
  • To effectively recruit, develop and train relevant staff in line with project person specifications;
  • Manage and set the prison department budget;
  • Network and build strong working relations and partnerships with other prison ministries and nonprofit organisations within the Prison Ministry Alliance;
  • To cast the vision, strategy and stories of The Message prison ministry to churches and to other key stakeholders;
  • To develop a pre-release and post release strategy that can help support and interlink with Eden (Message community transformation programme) and Enterprise development;
  • To communicate and work closely with the Message leadership team, especially the Eden Regional Leader and Message Enterprise Leader;
  • To supervise and monitor the after care programme for The Message prisons programme;
  • To oversee and ensure a tight monitoring and evaluation system for all aspects;
  • Keep The Message up to date with events, news and developments;
  • Work with the fundraising department to raise funds for the Prison Ministry to reach budget;
  • Attend prison conferences / events that are advertised on behalf of the Message Trust;
  • Continuously research after care best practices of other prison ministries and adapt learning to improve Message programmes.

Reporting Responsibilities

  • Provide a monthly report form to the Operations Director on the 1st of each month for the previous month activities;
  • Provide regular and up to date reports for Message management, donors and stakeholders;
  • Produce and maintain a database of all offenders in the programme – this should be available at all times so we can give donors an up to date ‘live’ report on progress of young men and women in the programme.


Any information relating to people contacted by the Trust acquired in the course of duty must be treated in strictest confidence and must be discussed only within the confines of the work setting with the appropriate members of staff.

Any information relating to staff acquired in the course of duty must be treated in the strictest confidence and must be discussed only with senior staff members or with the line manager.

Person specification:


  • Full driver license holder;
  • Own personal vehicle to be used for prison and community visitations;
  • The post holder must be a committed Christian who believes in the Lordship of Christ and the authority of scripture, and who wants to see the Christian message communicated effectively to young people. Applicants should have a personal testimony of their Christian faith, and be able to articulate a clear vision for their role within the work of The Message. The doctrinal basis of The Message is that of the Evangelical Alliance;
  • In addition to the above, applicants should be able to articulate a clear vision for their role within the Prisons Ministry and be willing to enter fully into Message community life;
  • Have a proven capacity to be an active member of a team;
  • Able to communicate effectively to young people;
  • Able to handle confidential information appropriately;
  • Able to take constructive criticism;
  • Adaptability / Flexibility;
  • Respect for authority;
  • Absolute discretion with members of the opposite sex;
  • Able to show evidence of possessing the following skills:
    • Ability to follow and carry out set tasks/assignments,
    • Maintain/continue established working practice;
    • Ability to initiate within pre-set parameters;
    • Ability to relate to groups of differing ability, age and culture;
    • Able to adapt quickly and take responsibility when required to.


  • Proven track record of long-term service in Christian ministry in prisons and youth at risk;
  • Previous experience of inner city youth work;
  • Experience of working in some leadership roles with young people;
  • Proven track record of fundraising and on going donor communication.

Personal Commitment

  • Identification with the Trust’s Statement of Values and Ethos;
  • Commitment to Child Protection, Equality and Diversity and Health & Safety;
  • Personal integrity and commitment to working as part of a team;
  • Applicants should be able to articulate a clear vision for their role within the work of The Message, particularly with reference to their ability to function within the framework of its Mission, Vision, Ethos and Values.

*Full copies of our Mission & Vision statement and our Ethos & Values statement are available on request.


This job description is not exhaustive and amendments and additions may be required in line with future changes. It will be reviewed periodically.

The successful candidate will be required to have a Police Check Clearance. 

NOTE: If you are interested in this position please send a copy of your CV and a covering letter to

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