Domestic Violence Advocate

Title:                    Domestic Violence Advocate 
Program:             Domestic Violence Housing First
Reports to:          Shelter Program Director
Domestic Violence Housing First (DVHF) is a Valley Oasis program that focuses on helping domestic violence survivors get into safe and stable housing as quickly as possible, and on providing services to help them move forward with their lives. Valley Oasis is one of eight agencies piloted with the DVHF model. The three pillars of the DVHF model, designed to promote housing stability are:
  • Survivor-driven, trauma-informed mobile advocacy: Advocates focus on addressing the needs identified by survivors rather than on pre-determined needs promoted by agencies. Advocates are mobile and are trained in trauma-informed practice.
  • Flexible funding assistance: Many survivors need not only safe and stable housing, but also temporary financial assistance. They may need assistance with issues directly related to housing or funds that are critical to housing stability. Funds are targeted to support survivors so they can rebuild their lives.
  • Community engagement: Proactive engagement with housing providers, other service providers and community member’s changes how the community responds to domestic violence.
Essential Job Functions:
  • Screen survivors housed at the shelter and/or external prospective participants for enrollment in the program
  • Create and assist in developing a safety plan, personal improvement plan and housing plan
  • Assist participants in developing a plan with concrete goals and objectives to secure housing
  • Advocate for participants around tenant rights to ensure participants are not denied housing due to past domestic violence related evictions or debt
  • Provide trauma informed care case management and advocacy
  • Provides assistance to participants with searching for housing, identifying safety features of apartments, preventing their abusers from locating them and reclaiming financial independence
  • Assist participants in completing applications for financial, housing, temporary restraining orders and protective orders
  • Assist participant in arranging transportation, when needed
  • Collaborates to develop a protocol for gathering participant information and ensuring safety and the confidentiality of data gathered
  • Provides homeless certification and letter indicating the participant is either staying in shelter residential program or fleeing an abusive relationship in order to establish eligibility for voucher and housing assistance programs
  • Works with participants to identify community resources for additional barriers to housing and employment
  • Attend community events for program outreach
  • Connect with property management firms, property managers and property owners to promote and educate on services
  • Maintain contact with participants and produce a monthly report as to the level of participation in the program
  • Maintain case management on each participant enrolled into program
  • Complete all paperwork and dailies by end of each shift
  • Assures quality service by documenting participant activity, maintaining accurate statistical data, filling out forms and records in a timely manner and following all ethical and legal requirements
  • Respond appropriately to participants’ individual needs for clothing, necessities and supplies, as well as their needs for information, referral and access to community resources to assist with self-sufficiency
  • Assist participant to coordinate health, mental health, legal, employment, education, criminal/civil case, DPSS, GAIN, CalWORKs appointments
  • Assist in the care and maintenance of the shelter
  • Attend agency and program meetings
  • Participate in case conference and care coordination meetings
  • Adhere to agency policies and procedures including confidentiality, child abuse reporting, and code of ethics
  • Provide back up support to Domestic Violence Shelter Main Office, when needed
  • Additional tasks, projects and or responsibilities as assigned by Supervisor that are not outlined but which are an important part of the agency’s goals and/or program outcomes.
Knowledge, Skills & Abilities
  • Knowledge and understanding of the concepts of Harm Reduction, Trauma Informed Care and the dynamics of domestic violence
  • Knowledge of issues facing domestic violence victims (e.g. substance abuse, mental health, sexual assault, human trafficking and immigration)
  • Knowledge of resources to assist domestic violence individuals throughout Los Angeles County
  • Knowledge and understanding of the challenges facing children of domestic violence victims
  • Knowledge of trauma informed supportive services for children of domestic violence victims
  • Ability to nurture respectful relationship with participants and their children
  • Knowledge and understanding of policy, systems, and local programs that impact domestic violence victims
  • Knowledge of resources including legal, medical, housing, educational and social service agencies and other resources in the community
  • Ability to work with a diverse population and provide culturally competent advocacy;
  • Ability to deescalate aggressive/agitated individuals
  • Actively promote positive, nurturing interactions between participants
  • Must be able to exercise initiative, independent good judgment, flexibility, discretion, and solid decision making
  • Must be able to successfully manage multiple priorities, meet deadlines, adjust to changing; circumstances, and demonstrate confidence working with diverse stakeholders
  • Work effectively under conditions of limited supervision, high stress and rapidly changing situations and circumstances;
  • Ability to handle common problems without supervisor intervention while knowing when supervisor participation is warranted;
  • Able to take appropriate steps to deal with emergency situations with the goal of maintaining the safety of all participants;
  • Ability to respond quickly and effectively to individuals who may be ill, using substances, lack of personal care in crisis situations and/or potentially hostile situations
  • Promote cooperation and commitment within a team to achieve goals and objective; collaborate with team members, sharing ideas and differences openly; be receptive to new ideas and adapt to change as necessary;
  • Demonstrate the ability to utilize strong judgement and interpersonal skills to manage sensitive participant interactions including with those who may be in distress with acute illness, substance use issues, co-morbidity of behavioral and physical health issues in addition to homelessness
  • Project a professional demeanor and a high level of professionalism when dealing with sensitive matters
  • Considers impact of personal and professional choices. Consistently make decisions in keeping with organizational values and Supervisor’s direction;
  • Strict confidentiality must be observed as it relates to participant information, agency business, program decisions and all other personal information
  • Excellent organizational skills and the ability to follow through from beginning to end on tasks
  • Outstanding communication skills, both written and oral; must communicate professionally and positively with participants, co-workers, management, community partners, employers, landlords, and other service providers
  • Proficient with office communication equipment and machines (telephone, copier, calculator, fax machine, personal computer, laptop, computer printer and scanner).
  • Proficient in use of laptop/desktop computer, Microsoft Windows and Office software programs (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint) and Google drive
  • Strong time management skills and the ability to multi-task and prioritize in a fast-paced environment, while exercising sound judgment.
  • Ability to work a flexible schedule; including nights, days, weekends and holidays
  • Able to respond to emergencies some evenings and weekends as necessary
  • Use of a personal vehicle may be required to travel in and around Antelope Valley and/or Los Angeles County and periodically transport participants
  • Maintain professional boundaries and work collaboratively with participants, volunteers and staff
  • Accountability – be on time for scheduled shifts
  • Be able to read and write English
  • Bilingual Preferred but not required
Qualifications & Experience
  • High School Graduate or equivalent
  • Associate degree in human services related field strongly preferred
  • One year experience in case management for victim services
  • Two year experience in social services setting; preferably working as an employee or volunteer in providing domestic violence services
  • Experience in a residential facility setting strongly preferred
  • Experience working with trauma survivors
  • Experience working with domestic violence issues
Agency Requirements
  • Must have a valid California Driver’s License
  • Reliable transportation
  • Auto Insurance
  • Clean driving record
  • Employee will be required to complete a TB test, fingerprinting, drug screen (employment pending on drug screen, background and review of motor vehicle report), 72-hour Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault training and CPR/First Aid certification.
Work Conditions & Physical Demands
The following are work conditions that one may encounter in the course of performing their job duties:
  • May be in contact with individuals in crisis
  • May experience unpleasant sensory demands associated with an individual’s use of alcohol and drugs, and lack of personal care
  • May experience crisis situations and potentially hostile situations, must be ready to respond quickly and effectively.
An employee is required to:
Walk and climb stairs; Handle, grasp and feel objects and equipment; Reach with hands and arms; extend both arms above the head and/or reach below the waist; Communicate ideas and information verbally and written word; Be able to move oneself quickly and easily from place to place; Repeat various motions with hands, , wrists, fingers; Climb on stools, steps and/or ladders; Be subject to outside environmental conditions, including but not limited to: Rain, heat, wind.
Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential job functions. If accommodation(s) are required, employee must inform Human Resources by the first week of employment. If an accommodation is not required at the time of employment, but is later required, you must inform Human Resources at the time it is needed.
Health Employee Assistance Plan Paid Sick
Dental AFLAC Paid Vacation
Vision Cafeteria 125 Plan Personal Days
Acupuncture/Chiropractic Retirement Plan  
Life Insurance 14 Observed Holidays  
Monday – Friday 8am – 5pm (may be required to work other than normal duty hours, to include evenings, weekends, holidays and/or on call status to assist with shelter staff coverage)
Salary Range:
$20.00 - $22.50 per hour
An Equal Opportunity Employer: Selection will be based solely on merit and will be without discrimination because of age, race, sex, religion,  national origin, marital status, sexual orientation, mental or physical disability.
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Valley Oasis is a community based organization dedicated to eliminating social and domestic violence and homelessness through community awareness, intervention, prevention, safe shelter, and supportive services.

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For more than 33 years, Antelope Valley Domestic Violence Council, now known as Valley Oasis, has devoted its energy to passionately advocating for the hurt, needy and politically under-represented members of the Antelope Valley.

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