Friends of Ruby (FoR) is dedicated to the journey and well-being of 2SLGBTQIA+ youth, aged 16-29 through mental health services, social services, and housing. FoR offers Youth Mental Health services, a Youth Drop-In Centre, and a Transitional Home. The Centre provides access to barrier-free counselling and therapeutic groups, case management and a drop-in space with hot meals, community, and comprehensive programming. The Home provides transitional and emergency housing, as well as mental health and life-skills to support youth moving towards independent living.
FoR recognizes that a diverse work force is critical to accomplishing our mission. Our goal is to attract and develop highly talented individuals from diverse backgrounds, allowing us to benefit from a wide variety of experiences and perspectives. We strongly encourage applicants from the 2SLGBTQIA+ and BIPOC communities, and diverse backgrounds that meet the requirements of the role. We welcome applicants to introduce themselves, their stories and lived experiences in their cover letter to the degree they are comfortable with.
Why Work at Friends of Ruby?
- A safe space to show up authentically through our workplace culture of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging.
- Gain professional and personal development through an engaging and supportive work environment.
- Create positive impact while serving and working alongside the 2SLGBTQIA+ community.
- Establish meaningful connections and expand your network in the non-profit sector.
- Produce projects and outcomes that motivate, inspire, and drive you.
We are looking for a member of the 2SLGBTQIA+ community to be our next Residential Housing Worker (RHW) to support the organization's efforts towards providing progressive support to 2SLGBTQIA+ youth including those with intersectional identities of Black, Indigenous and People of Colour (BIPOC). The RHW is responsible for the facilitation of life-skills workshops, responding to escalating situations when needed, applying and verbal de-escalation and crisis prevention techniques in defusing potentially volatile situations. The RHW will connect youth to support and resources to end homelessness by offering rental subsidies, emotional support, system navigation, coaching, and crisis support. This role will support youth to identify, activate, and enhance natural support in their lives.
Friends of Ruby uses individualized coaching to help increase resilience and improve life skills in the areas of personal safety, accessing resources, housing and basic needs, interpersonal and communication skills, identifying and achieving personal goals, connection to school and/or employment, and increasing optimism for the future. This position will provide support, engagement accessing services from Friends of Ruby at the Transitional House, while working collaboratively with other health and human service providers.
The successful candidate should have an understanding of substance use, mental health and harm reduction gained through direct experience working with marginalized individuals, providing support through an Anti-Oppressive Anti-Racist, strength-based, client-centered and trauma-informed lens, preferably to 2SLGBTQIA+ youth. They should also be able to handle high-stress situations and effectively use crisis-prevention and de-escalation techniques.
Duties & Responsibilities
- Support youth with focused problem solving in all areas including housing, employment, education, medical issues, mental health issues, legal/financial assistance, Ontario Works, Ontario Disability Support Program, immigration/refugees/newcomer support etc.; advocating for adequate service, treatment models and resources.
- Provide individual coaching/support to youth at the transitional house and assist youth in developing and implementing a goal plan.
- Provide systems navigation and case management to help youth to access appropriate internal and external services and support.
- Support and teach youth life skills such as financial literacy, budgeting, conflict resolution, problem solving, sleep hygiene, cooking, communication, resilience etc. to be successful in the community (with particular focus on housing).
- Intervene with de-escalation techniques and supporting youth through crisis situations as they occur.
- Document intake and discharge records, shift change notes, youth wellbeing and illness log, casework meetings, goal plans, safety plans, care plans, service restrictions, incidents, and interaction reports.
- Complete a variety of assessments with youth within the appropriate timeframe and facilitate programming to help them build their identified skills such as financial literacy, problem solving, conflict resolution and communication skills.
- Act as a liaison as needed between families, social workers, school representatives, doctors and other professionals involved with the youth.
- Attend required training opportunities within the appropriate timeframe, as directed by the Housing Manager and Director of Transitional Housing.
- Assist in the initial and ongoing assessment of participants' needs and updating the plan of care as required.
- Work collaboratively with youth to address their full range of needs to achieve short-term and long-term intervention goals using strengths based, client centered, anti-oppressive, harm reduction, youth development approach.
- Assist in developing a comprehensive participant discharge plan to address ongoing support needs, crisis contact information, and additional resources to support as required.
- Develop and maintain professional and trusting relationships with youth that encourage positive social and emotional development.
- Work collaboratively with Case Workers, Drop-In Support Workers, and Clinical Counselors to ensure wrap-around supports for each youth.
- Attend all staff meetings and House meetings as required.
- Complete and manage youth surveys and assist with food preparation in the kitchen and serving meals.
- Conduct weekly suite checks and support residents keeping their suites clean and organized.
- Provide a weekly detailed report related to repairs required for each unit.
- Participate in consultation services and case conferences with service providers to discuss care plans and service needs, as necessary.
- Collaborate with referral agencies when appropriate to facilitate referral for identification of client needs.
- Connect with formal and informal supports, peer support, professional services, and resources to promote youth recovery, improve their quality of life, and reduce the likelihood of relapse.
- Research and connect youth to community resources and supports which recognize and can address the unique needs of youth identifying as part of the 2SLGBTQIA+ community.
- Coordinate internal and external services and advocate on behalf of the participant to ensure appropriate and timely services.
- Understand and be committed to the Friends of Ruby Vision, Mission, and Values.
What You Bring to the Team
- Post-secondary degree or diploma in the Social Sciences/Human Services field (Bachelor of Social Work is preferred) or equivalent. combination of education, experience and training will be considered.
- 3+ years of experience in crisis support and intervention.
- Lived experience as e member of 2SLGBTQIA+ community.
- Experience working with marginalized groups and 2SLGBTQIA+community, in a transitional or emergency shelter.
- Ability to manage conflict, crisis, and escalating situations calmly and confidently.
- Knowledge and understanding of the Housing First for Youth & Harm reduction models.
- Current First Aid/CPR (training can be provided).
- Effective communication skills and the ability to adapt when taking into consideration each unique youth.
- Knowledge of Toronto Shelter Standards and SMIS.
- Knowledge of Apricot will be an asset.
- Commitment to social justice, harm reduction, anti-racist and anti-oppression practices, and to strengths-based, trauma-informed, participant-centered approaches.
- Satisfactory clearance under the Vulnerable Sector Police Check Program.
- Must be qualified to legally work in Canada.
- Willing to work onsite at our Friends of Ruby transitional home located in downtown Toronto.
- Willing to work on a flexible schedule to accommodate the needs of the organization including evenings, weekends, and holiday coverage as needed.
- Ability to travel to other community-based settings as needed.
What’s in it for YOU?
- A comprehensive benefits package effective on day one!
- 12 personal days for illness/personal time away; 3 weeks of vacation.
- RRSP matching contribution program.
- Dog-friendly office.
Friends of Ruby believes that immunization against COVID-19 is an individual and societal responsibility and that we must do everything possible to protect our clients, families, employees, students, volunteers and contractors against the spread of COVID-19. As a condition of employment, proof of full vaccination or exemption under the Ontario Human Rights Code must be submitted to Human Resources seven (7) calendar days prior to start date.
Statement on Employment Equity and Diversity
Friends of Ruby strives for inclusion and diversity by attracting extraordinary people from diverse backgrounds and lived experiences. Candidates with lived experience of homelessness and/or who self-identify as being from the 2SLGBTQIA+ or marginalized community, including Indigenous peoples, racialized persons, persons with disabilities, and persons, are encouraged to apply and will be prioritized. We ask that these candidates indicate their relevant identities in their cover letters.