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Parent Advocate Housing Specialist

Job Details

1946 Webster Avenue, Bronx, NY 10457 - Bronx, NY
Full Time
High School

Parent Advocate Housing Specialist

About Graham Windham 
In full partnership with families & communities, Graham Windham strives to make a life-altering difference to children, youth and families affected by abuse, neglect and delinquency by providing each child we serve with a strong foundation for life: a safe, loving, permanent family and the opportunity and preparation to thrive in school and in the world. With over 600 full-time employees serving children and families in multiple programs throughout Westchester County, Manhattan, the Bronx, Brooklyn and Harlem, Graham Windham provides an exciting & enriching work experience.

Graham Windham is one of the first organizations in the New York City to implement Solution – Based Casework. Solution – Based casework helps children and families to be the solution to the seemingly insurmountable problems in their lives, from generational cycles of poverty, abuse, and neglect to unemployment, domestic violence, and severe health problems. By recognizing and reinforcing their innate strengths and ability to cope, we at Graham Windham power them to take the lead in making change in their lives.

The Birth Parent Advocate is responsible for encouraging birth parents who reside in Harlem, Brooklyn and the Bronx to actively partner with Graham Windham and to engage in the process of planning for their children. The incumbent accomplishes this through advocacy, establishing and maintaining strong community linkages and by referring birth parents to concrete support services.

Specific Duties
•    Maintains a tracking system of referrals and case assignments.
•    Provides assistance in facilitating training in topics including, but not limited to the Parenting Journey.
•    Encourages parent’s participation in Family Team Conferences (FTCS) providing reminders and other supports as warranted.
•    Represents Graham Windham at internal and external meetings.
•    Celebrates birth parents by contributing to hosting events and activities.
•    Maintains accessible resource materials, making them available to other Graham staff and to parents.
•    Documents efforts to engage parents via service plans.
•    Provides full disclosure and all required consents to birth parents.
•    Co-facilitates quarterly birth parent round table meetings.

•    Provides direct counseling, on-call assistance, intervention, negotiation and advocacy regarding birth families’ housing needs.
•    Develops and maintains a comprehensive list of available housing resources.
•    Collects required documentation, completes online applications and records data in all applicable Housing systems including the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) and Supportive Housing systems.
•    Delivers completed Housing application packets to the New York City Administration for Children’s Services (ACS)
•    Accompanies parents to Housing court and to government assistance offices.
•    Maintains all reporting requirements set by funding and/or regulatory agencies.
•    Utilizes aspects of the Solution Based Casework (SBC) model when interviewing birth parents. (i.e. Address issues which led to the lack of housing and communicate with clients to ensure they have a clear understanding of their responsibilities as outlined in their “return to parent” plan).
•    Assist and accompany parents when shopping to purchase furniture for new apartments once children are final discharged from care.
•    Demonstrated responsible and professional telephone, email and interview etiquette
•    Attended all required training to ensure up to date information

High school diploma/General Equivalency Diploma (GED); Experience working with families; Knowledge of foster care and ACS mandates; Knowledge of CONNECTIONS preferred

Other Requirements & Competencies 
•    Demonstrated passion for working with birth parents and at risk teens in a child welfare setting.
•    Able to set limits and to maintain appropriate professional boundaries
•    Strong belief in families’ abilities to grow and change.
•    Self-motivated
•    Strong time management, writing and organizational skills
•    Works, both, independently and collaboratively with colleagues and stakeholders
•    Willing and able to travel throughout the five boroughs of New York City as needed.
•    Inclusive and respectful of all staff, parents, youth families regardless of race, ethnicity, religious affiliation, creed, national origin, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability or any other protected class or characteristic.
•    Must be able to climb stairs and conduct recreational outings and field visits to community.

Salary and Benefit

  • Base pay range $43,739/yr
  • Medical Insurance
  • Vision Insurance
  • Dental Insurance
  • Pension plan
  • Holiday pay