Larkin Street provides youth between the ages of 12 and 24 with the help they need to rebuild their lives. Each year, more than 3,000 youth walk through our doors seeking help. We give them a place where they can feel safe; rebuild their sense of self-respect, trust, and hope; learn school, life and job skills; and find the confidence to build a future.
We raise the bar by redefining success from securing independent housing to achieving a permanent pathway out of poverty. We have established bold goals for the youth in our services:
• Living-wage employment
• Two years of post-secondary education
• Safe and stable housing
• Physical and emotional well-being
POSITION TITLE: Engagement Counselor
REPORTS TO: Senior Manager, ECC
PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITY: Provide peer guidance and support, youth counseling, and group facilitation at Larkin Street Youth Services’ Engagement and Community Center (ECC). This position involves accompanying clients to appointments, working closely with counselors and case managers to ensure effective and coordinated services and support with administrative duties such as intakes and enrollments. This position will also provide support to the agency’s outreach team as well as HIV prevention services.
EXEMPT STATUS: Non Exempt
UNION STATUS: Union
ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS:
- Accompany youth to appointments and assist them with advocacy as needed.
- Responsible for contributing towards the care and welfare of staff and to the clients we serve. This includes crisis intervention and helping to maintain the safety of the program.
- Provide support to the Engagement and Community Center, including the front desk team and food services.
- Maintain a safe and supportive drop-in space and coordinate care for youth ages 12-24 through a client-centered model, utilizing motivational interviewing to strengthen goals and explore ambivalence.
- Engage successfully with a diverse client population who present with a myriad issues
- Handle crisis situations through de-escalation techniques and assist clients as they process social and emotional problems.
- Practice life skills in training for youth through modeling, active counseling and facilitation of groups.
- Promote wellness of the community through a harm reduction approach.
- Collect client information through intake and assessment, organize that information by entering data into paper-based and electronic-based data systems and obtain additional information by coordinating with other professional sources.
- Assists individuals by working with other programs to ensure youth are moving through continuum of Larkin Street services and/or city services while helping individuals understand and overcome social and emotional challenges.
- Provide HIV counseling and testing to youth agency-wide and in the community through confidential testing and offering pre- and post-test counseling.
- Support the Street Outreach team as needed with street outreach or tabling events, health fairs, etc.
OTHER DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
- Maintaining the cleanliness and operations of the facility including helping to prepare and serve meals, cleaning bathrooms, maintaining storage areas, correct activity schedules and signage displayed, and other tasks assigned by program management
- To participate in professional development activities to enhances counselor skill levels
- Responsible for supporting program services within the milieu. For example, crisis intervention or helping to maintain the safety of the program.
- Responsible for contributing towards the care and welfare of staff and to the clients we serve.
- Participate in professional development activities to enhance skill levels for clients
- Oversee shower, laundry, and clothing closet services
- Other duties as assigned
PHYSICAL & LANGUAGE REQUIREMENTS:
- Maintain professional standards of performance, demeanor and appearance at all times.
- Perform tasks and responsibilities in a complete and timely manner, complying with agency policies and standards and conforming to the requirements of this job description.
- Maintain a creative, team-building, cooperative approach to job performance and seek to bring a constructive, problem-solving orientation to all tasks.
- Maintain a focus on the agency’s mission and work to promote the positive individual and social change goals it embodies.
- Exercise discretion and professional judgment at all times keeping with the responsibilities carried personally and by the agency for the care and welfare of staff and to the youth in which we serve.
- Actively strive to upgrade professional skills through engaging in appropriate professional training and experience.
- Maintaining the strictest of confidentiality.
- Ability to work with a diverse staff and excel in a multi-cultural environment.
- Requires ability to lift, transfer, push/pull, maneuver, and reposition 25 lbs.
- Ability to reach, bend and walk.
- Finger manipulation.
- Ability to comprehend complex materials.
- Ability to speak and write English clearly and accurately.
- High School Diploma; Bachelors in related field, preferred.
BACKGROUND & EXPERIENCE:
- 2-3 years of experience working with high-risk youth in a shelter and/or transitional or supportive housing program(s) preferred.
- Working knowledge of Harm Reduction and the issues facing homeless youth including substance use, mental health issues, the foster care and juvenile justice systems.
- Must be a self-starter with excellent follow-through skills.
- Must also have ability to work with high-risk youth and with diverse staff, clients, and volunteers.
- Clean driving record
- Opportunities for Bi-Lingual in Spanish are available.
Larkin Street reserves the right to revise job descriptions or work hours as required.