Working at Hillside: Testimonials

“We want to help other families in need”

Only a few years ago, Jovannie Canales and Melisa Rivera felt overwhelmed with concern for their son. Today, he’s on a better path—and his parents were so inspired by the support he received that they’re bringing that support to other families in need, every day.

It started when their son, 15 at the time, was experiencing real challenges including aggression and suicidal ideation. Jovannie and Melisa weren’t sure how to help.

“It felt like we were walking on eggshells,” Jovannie says of the struggles their son faced, as well as the whole family. “We knew he needed help, and wanted help. But we didn’t know what to do.”

Every parent only wants the best for their child, and Melisa will never forget the day a Hillside Family Peer Advocate came to their home, and listened. “She told us about how Hillside could help our family and our child,” Melisa remembers. “She was understanding and supportive of us, from day one. She gave us hope.”

A carefully coordinated array of services were introduced that offered support to Jovannie and Melisa’s son, as well as the entire family. “It took time, but he started doing better,” Jovannie recalls. “His anger decreased, and we started seeing the light at the end of the end of the tunnel.”

“He started smiling again,” Melisa adds. “The whole family received support that we really needed.”

The couple were so inspired by their positive experience with Hillside, they decided to join the agency as Family Peer Advocates themselves. After completing their training, they joined the Hillside family to provide other parents and children with the kind of positive support they received.

“It’s a true blessing to be part of Hillside,” Jovannie says. “We want to help other families who are in need. We can share our experiences with them, because we understand what they are feeling.”

Melisa nods. “We want them to know that there’s hope, and they are not alone.”

Work at Hillside

Join the Hillside family! You’ll be an active part of your community, and make a difference in the lives of others. Other benefits include:

  • Entry level opportunities starting at $15/hour
  • Full benefit packages
  • Generous PTO and paid holidays
  • Opportunity to make a difference in the lives of others

Meet Carol Gray, Finalist for 2015 Technology Woman of the Year
Carol captures the spirit and enthusiasm of an employee who embodies the values of Hillside every day in her career here at Hillside. Carol chose Hillside as the place to share her talent, energy and commitment to creating value in partnership with the families and children being served by Hillside.

video produced by C47Films

Let's hear what the employees themselves have to say about Hillside. In an anonymous poll, we asked our staff the following questions:

What interested you most about working at Hillside?
“I first learned about Hillside Children's Center's philosophies and therapeutic behavioral approach with children while working in a BOCES Day Treatment Program. I immediately embraced a more proactive and less reactive approach when dealing with challenging and often times aggressive behaviors. At that time, I couldn't sign up for enough trainings, learn enough about family systems, trauma and its effect on young children and more effective behavior management strategies. I left the school environment to join Hillside in 1995 and throughout my tenure I have continued to learn and better understand mental health issues, complex family systems and trauma that affect the lives of young children.”
- Administrative Support Worker, Western Region

“The idea of working at Hillside intrigued me because I saw the opportunity to work within an agency that promoted Family-Driven/Youth-Guided care.”
- Direct Care Staff, Monroe Region

“Being in the human services field for over 20 years, I was aware of Hillside’s reputation for providing quality services. I wanted to be a part of an agency that exhibits that.”
-Direct Care Staff, Central Region

“I came to Hillside for the chance to work with children and families that really need support, as well as a great opportunity for growth in the future.”
-Direct Care Staff, Western Region

What would you tell an applicant who is applying to Hillside?
“The work you will do at Hillside is challenging, but the reward for helping a child make positive changes in his or her life is incredibly rewarding.”
–Manager, Central Region

“The agency is very large and offers many opportunities for your career. The leadership is committed, caring and innovative.”
- Direct Care Worker, Monroe Region

“Hillside is an organization that has deep values and cares deeply about the families and communities we serve. We take our Philosophy of Service to heart and work in partnership with families and youth to achieve their best possible outcomes. The work is not always easy and the challenges are numerous, but if you are the right fit the work is incredibly rewarding. You have an opportunity to make a significant difference in the lives of others through your work here.”
-Human Resources, Monroe Region

What is special about Hillside?
“The partnerships and collaboration with youth, families, funders, community members and HFA staff is just one facet that supports this agency to be very, very special.”
-Administrative Support Worker, Western Region

“Hillside is an agency that truly believes in helping children and families. It is evident in everything they do.”
-Manager, Central Region

“There are many things special about Hillside. There are special committees organized for people to be a part of where they can showcase their talents. There are employee recognitions. Each team feels like a small community where everyone is accepted and cared for.”
-Direct Care Staff, Western Region

What makes you want to stay at Hillside?
“I have truly enjoyed working in all of the positions I have held. I have been and continue to be supported daily by an array of staff (a team of professionals).”
–Administrative Support Worker, Western Region

“The caring staff members and the positive culture of Hillside make me want to stay with Hillside.”
-Manager, Central Region

“I want to stay at Hillside because I see the opportunities for the agency to grow and improve services and supports to families and youth, and I believe my work makes a difference in that area.”
-Direct Care Worker, Monroe Region

“I have a great supervisor who knows how to take care of the staff she supervises.”
-Direct Care Worker, Central Region

How has your work been recognized in the company?
“Throughout my tenure, my skill set and willingness to partner with others has been recognized by leadership, program managers, mentors and my peers. I have received a nomination for the Staff of the Year, milestone awards and compensation but, more importantly, I receive recognition on a daily basis from a variety of individuals.”
-Manager, Central Region

“My work has been recognized by leaders at all levels through email and hand-written letters from them. Also, Hillside recognizes my work through its pay for performance philosophy which factors job performance into annual salary increases.”
-Manager, Central Region

How has working at Hillside changed or improved you as a person?
“I'm more self-aware, more tolerant of differences.”
-Director, Monroe Region

“I am a more confident, caring and assertive (yet in a proactive and solution-focused manner) individual.”
-Administrative Support Worker, Western Region

“Working at Hillside has expanded my world view. My experience has taught me to be more patient and open-minded. I have learned how to embrace change and to continually seek to evolve and improve.”
–Manager, Central Region

“I have also learned many things about myself and have enjoyed the professional and personal growth I have experienced. I have been allowed to attend professional trainings to help with professional growth as well as staying current on new trends in the areas of social work and youth care.”
-Direct Care Worker, Western Region

“I have learned a lot and continue to learn something new every day. It is also a great place that facilitates development."
-Administrative Support Worker, Monroe Region