SUMMARY DESCRITPION: The Family Specialist is responsible for providing specified social services to youth and families for the assigned county or counties. This position has no supervisory responsibilities.
ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILTIES:
- Provides Outreach in the assigned area(s) to promote available services in order to encourage FAYS eligible youth and their families to utilize FAYS services. Outreach activities include, but are not limited to; publicizing services through media, face-to-face contact, and other means, promoting public or community awareness of services, promoting awareness of services in the community social service network, ensuring that community youth and their families are aware that services are available, implementing methods by which special populations or neighborhoods are targeted, identifying other agencies in the catchment area to facilitate coordination of services.
- Provides Intake/Screening by conducting initial review of prospective client with respect to FAYS and K’STAR guidelines. Offer referral of ineligible youth and families to appropriate alternative services. Intake service must be available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and documented on the Screening/Intake form. Coverage of responsibility when the Family Specialist is not available must be arranged with the Program Coordinator. The Intake/Screening service may be provided through the cellular and 1-800 Help-Line. Access to direct services must be made available within one week of the Intake and within 24 hours in cases requiring crisis intervention. FAYS eligible youth will be opened for FAYS services on the client registration form. Client folders are maintained reflecting all direct and case management services received.
- Provides Crisis Intervention/Counseling services to resolve the immediate crisis that prompted the request for assistance. Services will focus on alleviating the problems or risks of runaway, truancy, family conflict and the risk of child abuse/neglect. Crisis intervention/Counseling services may be provided individually, but staff must encourage intervention on a family basis except when distance or severe hostilities preclude working with the family as a whole. Staff will provide or make available crisis intervention services as soon as possible, but no later than 24 hours after a crisis referral. Coverage of this responsibility when the Family Specialist is not available must be arranged with the Program Coordinator. Staff is required to receive annual crisis intervention training.
- Develops Action Plan and revises a family-directed Action Plan for each registered youth and their family which will be documented on the Action Plan form and Action Plan Update form. A copy of the Action Plan must be given to the family. Staff will review and update the plan every 30 days with the family and youth. The development of the initial Action Plan must be started within 3 workdays of the initial intervention and completed by the tenth workday. It is expected that in most cases the initial Action Plan will be completed during the first face-to-face meeting with the youth and family.
- Provides or arranges Case Planning and Short-Term Family Intervention services on an individual, family and/or group basis. These services will be strength based, solution focused, client driven and family oriented. These services must be available to youth and to family members. Staff is expected to make every effort to engage the youth’s family members as well as the youth in intervention and/or prevention services. All services will be documented on the Progress Note form. In general, services will be of short duration, not exceeding a period of 180 days.
- Provides Skill Based Training for Parents and Youth on topics such as: communication, problem solving, decision making, anger management and conflict resolution. Training should teach parents how to advocate on behalf of their children, and youth how to advocate on their own behalf. This training should actively involve participants in discussion, feedback and experiential exercises. The training must be separate from regular guidance (FAYS counseling) sessions and may be provided in group settings or individually if it is not practical to hold group sessions. The Family Specialist should develop unique and creative opportunities for at-risk youth and their families to learn and practice these skills. Documentation of training will be noted on the Skill Based Training form.
- Completes Discharge/Case Closure. When services are complete the Family Specialist will document the closure on the Client Closing Form and complete the Discharge Summary. It is expected that in most cases the Client Closing Form will be completed within 2 weeks (14 days) from the last day the youth or family received services. The closed file will be given to the Program Coordinator no later than 30 days from the date of the case closure.
- Utilizes Community Collaboration by participating with or presenting to major youth serving agencies such as CPS, MHMR and Juvenile Probation to encourage networking and enhancement of continuity of care. The Family Specialist is expected to participate in Community Resource Coordination Group (CRCG), Community Management Team (CMT) and other related entities if they exist in the communities served unless Program Coordinator is assuming this task.
- Completes all required Documentation in a thorough and professional manner within the prescribed timeframes. This includes client screening/intakes, record of client service, progress notes, action plans, action plan updates and discharge summaries. Client folders will be kept current within each month of service delivery. Other required staff personnel documentation are weekly time sheets (due each Monday), monthly service summaries, monthly expense reports, mileage logs and telephone logs (due the 2nd of each month).
- Caseload Goal. ____________________________
- Participates in Supervisory Meetings and Staff Meetings.
- Completes a minimum of 24 hours of appropriate Training each year including annual training in Crisis Intervention. Documentation of all training will be submitted with weekly time sheet.
- Other duties as assigned.
- Participates in cross-training activities.
- Participates is special projects.
- Participates on task forces.
- Is available for press and media events.
- Is available for public speaking as needed.
- Is available for special youth events such as Youth Advisory Boards.
- Is available for special adult events such as Parent Advisory Boards.
QUALIFICATIONS: A minimum of a Bachelor’s Degree and one year experience working with youth and families. Preferably a Master’s Degree and Counseling/Therapy License. Available personal vehicle, Texas driver’s license and state required liability insurance.
KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES:
- Work independently, exercise initiative, and accomplish tasks without continuous supervision.
- Work cooperatively with other members of the team, department and agency.
- Communicate with clients, co-workers, volunteers and the general public clearly, courteously and effectively.
- Pay careful attention to detail and work with accuracy.
- Ability to add, subtract, multiply and divide in all units of measure using whole numbers, common fractions and decimals.
- Ability to apply common sense understanding to carry out instructions furnished in written, oral or diagram form.
- Ability to read and interpret documents, routine reports and correspondence. Ability to speak effectively before clients, other staff, administration and other service agencies.
- Maintain neat, well-organized records.
- Operate personal computers and general office software programs.
- Maintain flexibility; working with frequent interruptions and multiple, changing priorities.
- Maintain a good record of attendance, punctuality and neat appearance.
- Respond appropriately to the cultural differences present among the organization’s service population and staff.
- Demonstrate conviction about the capacity of people to grow and change.
- Forge a mutually respectful partnership with persons served and their families in which they are helped to gain the skills and confidence to address any issues and problems they face.
PHYSICAL DEMANDS: The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. While performing the duties of this job the employee is regularly required to talk and hear. The employee frequently is required to walk, stand, climb stairs, sit, use hands to use or handle office tools or equipment, including telephone and computer, and reach with hands or arms. The employee is occasionally required to stoop, kneel or crouch. The employee must frequently lift and/or move up to 25 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include ability to adjust focus for work with computers and peripheral vision and depth perception for driving. The employee is required to drive or have available transportation to multiple locations to deliver direct services, to attend staff meetings and to attend trainings.
WORK ENVIRONMENT: The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential duties and responsibilities of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential duties and responsibilities. The work environment is non-smoking. The employee is constantly exposed to telephone, busy environment and many interruptions. The noise level in the workplace is usually moderate. Travel is required for direct service, outreach, meetings and trainings.
HOURS: Salaried, exempt position. Forty-hour work week includes flexible schedule, typically hours other than 8am to 5pm. Must be available to respond to crisis as they occur. Responsible for after hours calls unless arrangements have been made with Program Coordinator.
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