Mental Health Family Support Advocate (Port Chester – Carver Center Children’s Place)

JOB DESCRIPTION

Family Services of Westchester (FSW) provides mental health and social services that strengthen and support families, children and individuals at every stage of their lives. With 50 innovative programs, FSW serves 30,000 individuals annually in Westchester County, New York.

Founded in 1954, Family Services of Westchester is a private, nonprofit, non-sectarian social services agency.

FSW’s Head Start/Early Head Start is a federal government program that was created in 1965 to give preschool children from low-income families a “head start” on their readiness for elementary school.

POSITION TITLE: Mental Health Family Support Advocate (Port Chester Carver Center, Children’s Place)

STATUS: Full Time/ Permanent

SUPERVISED BY: Mental Health & Disabilities Manager

JOB DETAILS:

Family Services of Westchester is looking for full-time Mental Health Family Support Advocate for our Port Chester Carver Center Children’s Place program.

JOB SUMMARY/PURPOSE: Providing mental health services to children and families is an integral component of the Head Start Program. It includes meeting Head Start Performance Standards. The Mental Health Family Support Advocate assists the Mental Health Specialists and Family Advocates. This includes providing crisis support to families when needed. The Mental Health Family Support Advocate helps to set up community resources to meet the needs of children and their families. The role includes participating in monthly mental health meetings, parent meetings and policy council meetings. Coordinates with Mental Health Specialists and Family Advocates to promote the mental health and social-emotional wellbeing of children, families and staff daily.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES/RESPONSIBILITIES:

  • Provide crisis support for families.
  • Support Mental Health Specialists and Family Advocates to plan integrated services for all children.
  • Conduct Trauma History Screenings for families.
  • Assist Mental Health Specialists with classroom observations, screenings and evaluations.
  • Assists with Parent Trainings and Workshops and attends monthly Policy Council meetings.
  • Identify children with trauma indications and work with Mental Health Specialists, parents and teachers on recommended actions.
  • Facilitates referrals for parents and children to community resources as needed.
  • Assists in transition of children receiving mental health services with full parental participation.
  • Provide advice and recommendations to ensure appropriate practices and compliance with existing laws and regulations.
  • Ensure all developmental screenings are completed within four weeks after a child has been enrolled in Head Start program.
  • Participates in monthly Mental Health meetings.
  • Assists Mental Health Specialist with Parent Workshops and attends monthly Policy Council meetings.
  • Assists Mental Health Specialists in staff trainings.
  • Assists Mental Health Specialist in providing staff wellness activities and trainings.
  • Documents all meetings with parents and classroom observations using COPA.
  • Comply with all Head Start Mandates.
  • Additional duties as assigned by the Mental Health Specialist.

COMMUNICATION:

  • Informs supervisor of any problems that may affect quality and standards of the department operations.
  • Works collaboratively and communicates with Family Advocates, Mental Health Specialists, Program Directors and teaching staff to assure continuity of services.
  • Communicates effectively with families during screenings, when making referrals and while providing crisis support.
  • Fosters good communication between FSW, Head Start/Early Head teams and community partners.
  • Demonstrates ability to function in a culturally sensitive manner within FSW’s philosophy, mission and Head Start/Early Head Start guidelines.

COMPLIANCE MANAGEMENT:

  • Maintain parents, children and staff confidentiality at all times.
  • Maintains all documentation in a timely manner.
  • Maintains a compliance with Head Start Performance Standards.

QUALIFICATIONS

EDUCATION:

  • B.A. or B.S. in Social Work or related field preferred
  • Credential in Mental Health Family Support
  • Demonstrate experience in Early Childhood Education.
  • Bilingual (English/Spanish) a plus.
  • Excellent organizational ability and interpersonal skills.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Excellent computer skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to perform multiple tasks effectively in a fast-paced, challenging, and constantly changing environment.

SKILLS:

  • Strong interpersonal skills including excellent active listening and clear oral communication skills.
  • Highly organized and self-directed, able to multi-task.
  • Comfortable working in a fast-paced, high accountability environment.
  • Effective in problem solving and exhibits excellent judgment and the ability to prioritize.
  • Able to function effectively as a member of an interdisciplinary team.
  • Able to engage with families and children.
  • Culturally competent/sensitive (racial, ethnic, linguistic, LGBTQ+, physical ability, etc.) and committed to inclusive, multi-cultural programming.
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office applications.
  • Strong writing and reading skills
  • Able to understand and follow detailed instructions.
  • Exceptional attention to details.

EXPERIENCE:

  • 3 years+ working in mental health and/or social services.
  • Experience with Head Start or Early Head Start desirable.

REQUIREMENTS:

  • Schedule determined by program needs, but generally 7:45 A.M. – 3:15 P.M.
  • At FSW, we require proof of vaccination against COVID-19 to work at any of our locations. Are you able to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination?

PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS:

  • Manual dexterity and regular hours at computer keyboard.
  • Approximately 60% sitting and 40% walking/standing.

WORK ENVIRONMENT:

  • Frequent contact with employees and representatives of outside agencies, frequent contact with parents, children and staff.
  • Possible exposure to communicable diseases and other conditions common to a social service agency.

There are a variety of benefits to joining Family Services of Westchester, an organization with over 65 years of history impacting vulnerable communities. In addition to the opportunity to connect with and help thousands of residents in Westchester County, FSW offers its employees an inspiring, diverse and team-based work environment with comprehensive benefits including medical, dental, life insurance, flexible spending accounts, and 403(b) for full-time employees.

At FSW, we enjoy working in a collaborative, mission-driven environment and value the benefits of a diversified workplace that prioritizes our clients and the communities we serve. If you want to make a difference in the lives of thousands of people across the communities of Westchester, and if the position of Mental Health Family Support Advocate speaks to your capabilities, experience and commitment to social service, please submit your resume and cover letter. Qualified candidates will be contacted by phone and/or email.

FSW is an equal opportunity employer.

To apply for this position, please email Kyle Ozeroff:  Kyle.Ozeroff@fsworg.onmicrosoft.com

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