Shelter Outreach Advocate

Title:                    Shelter Outreach Advocate
Program:             Underserved Victim Advocacy Program
Reports to:          Shelter Program Director
The shelter is a 60-day emergency shelter open 24-hours year round. The shelter assist an average of 330 people per year. All services are provided by domestic violence advocates on the shelter grounds; such as:
  • 24-hour hotline
  • Response to hospital emergency room calls
  • Peer counseling
  • Transportation
  • Safety planning and/or safety moves
  • Counseling for children
  • Individual/group education
  • Social service advocacy
  • Emergency food and clothing
  • Court advocacy/accompaniment
  • Response to law enforcement calls
  • Household establishment
  • Legal assistance with temporary restraining orders/permanent restraining orders

The Shelter Outreach Advocate will engage in and conduct training on cultural sensitivity and other population relevant topics, outreach to the community, and provide day-to-day shelter support and advocacy, including court accompaniment, transportation, counseling, housing and financial assistance, as well as provide assistance with victim compensation.

Essential Job Functions:
  • Increase access to culturally appropriate victim services for unserved/underserved victims/survivors of domestic violence
  • Provide crisis intervention and referrals on the 24 hour hotline to those seeking shelter and other services, not limited to domestic violence
  • Transfer emergency hospital calls to on-call advocates as needed
  • Respond and provide medical advocacy to survivors in hospital emergency rooms
  • Completes shelter intakes and provide an orientation to incoming residents - Communicate shelter guidelines and expectations to residents as outlined
  • Provide direct services to victims and their children including intensive case management, crisis intervention, safety planning, advocacy, parenting support, information and referrals
  • Provide appropriate resources and/or referrals to children whom have observed, witnessed and/or have experienced trauma, as necessary
  • Accompany survivors to court and social service provider appointments, as needed
  • Assist survivors in completing applications for financial, housing, temporary restraining orders and protective orders
  • Educate survivors on their rights as they pertain to victim’s compensation claims and assist with application process
  • Complete all paperwork and dailies by end of each shift
  • Assures quality service by documenting client activity, maintaining accurate statistical data, filling out forms and records in a timely manner and following all ethical and legal requirements
  • Co-facilitate and/ or conduct groups structured to the needs of shelter residents (i.e. Parenting skills, life skills, resume writing, job search etc.)
  • Transportation to hospital, metro link, etc. if needed
  • Provide ongoing service planning with clients and maintain written records of all service plans and achievements
  • Respond appropriately to clients’ 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 client to coordinate health, mental health, legal, employment, education, criminal/civil case, DPSS, GAIN, CalWORKs appointments
  • Utilize evidence-informed strategies to increase community awareness and knowledge on topics such as: domestic violence, healthy relationships, respect, bystander intervention and supporting survivors
  • Develop presentations, workshops, events and literature on the provision of culturally sensitive services to those seeking DV victim assistance
  • Participate in Agency’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) committee
  • Develop and complete an organizational evaluation to identify strengths and weaknesses in the agencies cultural competency and make recommendations to DEI committee
  • Coordinate, participate, implement and assist in campaigns during nationally recognized weeks or months; such as Domestic Violence Awareness Month
  • Assist in empowering the community to make a difference and understand the best practices and approaches for culturally appropriate services
  • Develop and conduct training to local law enforcement agencies on domestic violence and prevention strategies
  • Develop community relations and collaborative programs with other agencies
  • Maintain active membership with community groups/coalitions; such as but not limited to A.V Homeless Coalition, Care Coordination, Sexual Assault Response Team (SART), Domestic Violence Coalitions, Statewide Coalition to End Domestic Violence, local NAACP and other local organizations that focus on serving and the empowerment of the African American community
  • Complete exit paperwork for residents moving out: clean/sanitize rooms after residents exit and prepare for the next resident
  • Assist in the care and maintenance of the shelter
  • Assist in household chores – such as but not limited to: laundry, cleaning of bathrooms, kitchen, main room
  • Perform routine chores and cleaning task assigned by shift to ensure the safety and cleanliness of the shelter facility
  • Conscientiously communicate information between shifts
  • Maintain and update referral book as necessary
  • Complete ground and resident room checks
  • Log all in-coming calls, hotlines, messages, and possible problems in the agency logbook
  • Attend and successfully complete agency sponsored DV/SA training, Trauma Informed Care Training and Cultural Competency Training
  • Attend agency and program meetings
  • Attend trainings and continuing education, such as but not limited to Trauma-Informed Care, Cultural Sensitivity, and any new topics pertaining to African American victims/survivors
  • Provide information to Supervisor topics learned and conduct presentations to agency staff to educate
  • Adhere to agency policies and procedures including confidentiality, child abuse reporting, and code of ethics
  • 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 client 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 client 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
  • Two year experience in social services setting; preferably working as an employee or volunteer in providing victims services
  • Culturally reflective of the African American population
  • 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  
40 hours a week; schedule will consist of a combination of shifts (may be required to work other than normal duty hours, to include day and evening shifts, weekends, holidays and/or on call status)
Salary Range:
$22.00 - $24.00 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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