School-Based Mental Health Specialist
Established in 1920, the Center for Family Services (CFS) has been committed to uplifting individuals and families through an innovative continuum of care. Its efforts are focused on serving more than 10,000 families annually through early childhood, supportive housing, homeless prevention, workforce development, and several crisis hotlines. In 2017, CFS was awarded a 5-year implementation grant from the Department of Education to implement the Camden Promise Neighborhood Initiative, a neighborhood based effort to improve education and create family economic stability for Camden families through a cradle-to college-to career continuum of services. This initiative seeks to improve academic achievement and family economic success in the lowest performing schools and neighborhoods in Camden. The four neighborhoods targeted are: Cooper Lanning, Bergen Square, Centerville, and Liberty Park.
CFS is seeking a full-time Mental Health Specialist for its Camden Promise Neighborhood partner schools. The Specialist will provide school based professional support services to prospective and current Camden Promise Neighborhood (CPN) families with children at the early learning level, elementary and middle school level, or high school level. The Mental Health Specialist is responsible for monitoring, supporting and enhancing families’ success in the referral programs by assessing external risk factors and intervening as appropriate to support program accessibility and completion. This includes direct coaching and support of families, building internal program capacity for services, and expanding access to external resources for delivering counseling and related social services. This position will also play a key role in the referral selection process and deliver life skills programming as needed. This position will be 100% school based.
Reports To: Social Service Solutions Manager
• Conducts one-on-one interviews and assessments of prospective CPN referrals.
• Provides intensive case management and mentoring for multiple households.
• Develops and maintains “individual service plans” and records for families who need case management services.
• Reviews “individual service plans” and proactively connects families to appropriate available resources and helps them apply for assistance programs (e.g. healthcare, child care, legal representation) that will ease and possibly eliminate many of their challenges.
• Facilitates groups/programs/workshops centered on the development of self-esteem, parenting, conflict resolution, forward planning, and other related life-skills.
• Provides one-on-one coaching, home visits and supports as needed and appropriate for families.
• Meets weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, or as needed with students and their families as they progress through their “individual service plans”.
• Collects data on assigned cases and document progress toward established goals for family “individual service plans”.
• Builds relationships with families through individual meetings and home visits with one’s caseload as well as through visibility and participation at various community meetings and activities, when appropriate.
• Maintains professional growth and development throughout the year by attending workshops and trainings that will aid in providing superior case management services.
• Builds new and maintains relationships with community partners around education and employment, health, mental health, and substance abuse resources.
• Collaborates with external sources to develop or enhance services directly applicable to the families’ lives. (i.e., anger management, relationships, life transitions and pressures, etc.)
• Enters all documentation, including case notes and contacts, into data system and examines trends/issues in the community that may be affecting residents, partners and potential stakeholders.
• Participates actively as a member of the Service Delivery System team, contributing ideas and recommendations for improving processes based on work in the above areas.
• As needed, participates in meetings/discussions with other Promise Neighborhood sites.
• Ensures continuity of programming and serve as focal point for each assigned case.
• Must be able to develop successful and trusting relationships with the CPN families, create and sustain an environment that supports these relationships.
• Passion for the mission of CPN and a commitment to the potential of the Camden community.
• Master of Social Work and/or Counseling degree or a degree in a related field from an accredited program required. LPC/LICSW/LCSW, BCaBC preferred
• 2+ years’ experience as a case-manager/counselor/therapist for at-risk individuals, particularly children ages 0-5, elementary or high school age children, including: experience developing, implementing, monitoring and measuring the effectiveness of counseling, case management, and related programs.
• Spanish language fluency and ability to conduct job duties in both English and Spanish strongly preferred.
Excellent oral and written communication skills.
• History of cultivating relationships and building alliances with agencies and schools.
• An engaging and collaborative leadership style with mature interpersonal skills and the ability to juggle and manage multiple, competing priorities and deadlines.
• History of thriving in a fast paced, high growth, team oriented structure where priorities change rapidly and everyone is an equal participant in getting the work done.
• Commitment to diversity and inclusion on all levels.
• Access to reliable transportation. If applicable, will be required to present proof of acceptable driving record, current driver’s license, and proof of liability insurance.
Salary will be commensurate with experience and compensation history. Benefits will be competitive with industry standards and include medical, dental and vision coverage; retirement plan options; and vacation, holiday and leave policies.