Youth Advocate

Program/Department Description:

Community Access provides affordable housing and supportive services to individuals with psychiatric disabilities, histories of homelessness and substance use, families with histories of homelessness, and other low-income community members.

Position Overview:

The Youth Advocate provides support services to youth to include assisting with defining personal, vocational and educational goals using a person-centered model that supports individuals in their recovery, hopes and opportunities. 

Position Location: Bruckner Ave, Bronx New York

Position Type: Part-Time (24 hours / week) w/ Benefits

Salary: $18.00 (Hour)

Essential Job Function:

  • Provide outreach, advocacy and supportive services to assigned youth.

  • Develop and assist in implementing service plans determined by goals of program participants, including reviewing service plans with youth, identifying progress and revising plans as needed.

  • Work in collaboration with other staff in engaging youth, making sure their voice is heard in support service planning

  • Facilitate youth-focused support groups

  • Advocate for youth within the community to ensure their needs are being met

  • Organize and support age appropriate social, recreational, and educational activities for youth and their families

  • Provide support to youth at family team meetings and community meetings as appropriate

  • Share personal knowledge about the youth service system and resources available to children, young adults and families

  • Produce and maintain thorough, accurate and timely documentation, including charts and documentation of interactions with program participants, services provided, important information and/or events, and contacts with other agencies and service providers, as required by agency policies, and relevant contracts and regulatory agencies.

  • Assist program participants in advocating for quality care received from external service providers, including educating providers on special issues, etc. 

  • Provide referrals for treatment for mental health concerns, substance use, and physical health problems, as dictated by program participants.

  • Assist program participants in identifying vocational and educational goals and opportunities, including assessment, support and follow-up.

  • Assist program participants with conflict resolution.

  • Utilize harm reduction strategies when working with individuals experiencing drug and/or alcohol related problems.

  • Provide outreach to program participants who are not indicating their goals or who are not engaged.

  • Provide crisis intervention, as necessary

  • Provide support and training on skill-building, including assertiveness, self-advocacy, socialization, and other skills on related issues.

  • Maintain quality service by establishing and reinforcing program/agency standards in all interactions with program participants. 

  • Create or maintain a special project each year (e.g. participate in the advocacy department, coordinate an activity, participate in a committee, etc.)

  • Provide holiday, evening and weekend coverage, as necessary.

  • Provide coverage for non-assigned program participants, as needed.

  • Assist with training (after six months to a year) new staff on essential job functions.

Job Qualifications:

  • Have an understanding, appreciation, and commitment to the philosophy and mission of Community Access.

  • Qualified candidate have experience receiving services from the children's behavioral health or other child-serving systems. 

  • Minimum of high school diploma or equivalent (GED),

  • .Must be fingerprinted and cleared by the New York State Justice Center.

  • Commitment to recovery-oriented practice.

  • Be skilled in conflict mediation/negotiation and have an assertive approach to problem solving.

  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.

  • Ability to utilize various computer programs, specifically Microsoft Word and Excel.

  • Be creative and flexible.

  • Show initiative and be responsible for follow through.

  • Ability to maintain confidential information, as related to position.

  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team.

  • Bilingual Spanish-speaking, preferred.

  • Ability to walk up several flights of stairs.

  • Ability to work in the field (using public transportation).