Bilingual Housing Advocate (English and Spanish)

Supervised By: Director of Housing Services

Hours & Status: Full-time, Hourly Non-Exempt, Monday-Friday 8am-5pm. Rotating on-call responsibilities. This role requires some flexible scheduling to meet the needs of housing clients including some evenings. The role also facilitates an evening group on a rotating basis

Salary & Benefits: $21.00-$23.00 per hour; 4 weeks of PTO, increasing to 6 weeks at 2 year anniversary; 11 paid holidays plus one floating holiday; health, dental and vision benefits and HSA or FSA with employer match; Simple IRA with employer contribution, EAP, Life and Long-Term disability Insurance

AGENCY OVERVIEW 

Safe Haven Ministries—a nonprofit organization located in Grand Rapids, Michigan—believes in a multi-faceted approach to serving victims/survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking and preventing domestic violence in our community. Safe Haven offers confidential housing services; individual advocacy; support groups; children’s programming; and primary prevention training and technical assistance for the entire community. Safe Haven is committed to serving all individuals impacted by relationship abuse and values creating a safe haven for all.  

POSITION OVERVIEW 

Safe Haven Ministries is seeking a Housing Advocate who has the desire to provide comprehensive support services to adolescent and adult survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking through their housing journey. A successful candidate will demonstrate the ability to deliver consistent and quality strength-based case management, psychoeducation and advocacy, while demonstrating initiative to  working collaboratively with property managers, landlords and community partners. 

The Bilingual Housing Advocate will support all aspects of Transitional Housing and Rapid Rehousing contract compliance and regulatory requirements. They also must have the ability to show good independent judgment, and show the ability to effectively manage crisis situations. The Housing Advocate supports the housing needs of clients, as well as supports individuals through their journey of healing from domestic violence and/or human trafficking.

SUMMARY OF DUTIES

  • Provide support to those impacted by domestic violence and human trafficking, utilizing an empowerment, strength-based and trauma informed approach.
  • Assess personal and family situations of homeless individuals and families to determine eligibility for programs and service needs. 
  • Facilitate psychoeducational support groups on a rotating basis, including a group focused on financial literacy and empowerment
  • Assist participants in locating and securing housing of their choice using proper calculations  of income and rent per program guidelines. 
  • Provide support to transitional housing participants that support community connection, including participation in weekly house dinners (currently Wednesday evening)
  • Provides training on the responsibilities of tenants and how to address potential issues with  property owners. 
  • Serves as an ongoing liaison between property managers and participants and neighbors as  needed. 
  • Share a staff on call rotation with other advocate staff
  • Ensures rental properties meet HUD Quality Standards and are appropriate for the  program participants. 
  • Facilitate and coordinate supportive service activities for participants to promote  achievement of goals and objectives, including development of a strength-based Housing Plan
  • Provide ongoing support to clients around their client engagement plan with a focus on supporting their goals that support permanent housing, economic empowerment, emotional and physical health and self-sufficiency
  • Provide domestic violence and human trafficking case management and advocacy to participants, provide support, reduce isolation, listen, problem solve, and identify resources to assist with reintegration of  participants in the community. 
  • Establish and maintain collaborative professional relationships, coordinate services with other  agencies or workers providing services to the consumer. 
  • Maintain client files per program guidelines and funding requirements. 
  • Collect and report program data while maintaining strict confidentiality practices. ∙ Provide group events, training, coaching to consumers to support the goals of increased income and self-sufficiency, workforce and employment training. 
  • Attend team meetings, staff meetings and training workshops. 
  • Contribute to the team in service delivery outcome achievements. 
  • Implement project guidelines and requirements to promote integration of project objectives  and strategic goals into service delivery functions. 
  • Carry out procedures in accordance with regulatory requirements and policy and procedural  requirements. 
  • Identify and communicate training and professional development needs. 

KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS & ABILITIES REQUIRED OR PREFERRED

  • Bilingual (English and Spanish) Required
  • Knowledge of community resources to assist individuals with their housing, financial and health goals
  • Demonstrate flexibility and adaptability to work in various environments including youth settings, residential, nonresidential and community based sites.
  • Ability to effectively respond to crisis situations, provide active listening and strong advocacy skills.
  • Knowledge of the dynamics of domestic violence; previous work with domestic violence preferred
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Ability to communicate and support individuals from diverse cultures and backgrounds.
  • Demonstrate professionalism and leadership qualities with strong abilities to adapt, prioritize and demonstrate flexibility as needed
  • Strong organizational and time management skills
  • Ability to ascend/descend stairs and position self to reach outlets in homes and to stretch upwards to check smoke alarms (with assistance pole).
  • Bachelor’s degree in social work or related field or 3 years of related experience 
  • Valid Michigan Driver’s license and reliable transportation 
  • Understanding of substance use disorder, HIV/AIDS, mental illness and harm reduction strategies, human behavior and family systems 
  • Understanding Social and economic problems related to housing needs for those in lower income bracket 
  • Knowledge of housing stability practices
     

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work performed by employees in this position. They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all duties, responsibilities, and/or qualifications of employees assigned to this job. Employees are required to perform other duties as requested, directed, or assigned.

Safe Haven is an equal opportunity employer and dedicated to a policy and culture of non-discrimination and equal opportunity for all employees and qualified applicants. People with disabilities, people of color, indigenous people and LGBTQIA+ candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.