Sarah’s Inn is a community-based non-profit organization whose mission is to improve the lives of those affected by domestic violence and to break the cycle of violence for future generations. Our services and initiatives focus on ending relationship violence through domestic violence crisis intervention, community education, and violence prevention programs for youth.
Job Title: Community Advocate (Housing Forward)
Reports To: Associate Director
FLSA status: Exempt/Full-time
Position Summary: Provide counseling, advocacy and direct service to victims of domestic violence and their families including crisis intervention, emotional support, safety planning, general and legal advocacy, referral, domestic violence education and support and education group services. In addition develop partnerships with community programs and alliances to provide education and build widespread support for victims and their families.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities: Other duties may be assigned.
Provide comprehensive and quality services to victims of domestic violence and their families (includes children and teen witnesses).
Provide on-going counseling and emotional support to victims of domestic violence and their families through in-person individual sessions and group sessions.
Provide crisis intervention, general and legal advocacy, referral, domestic violence education, safety planning, and emotional support for victims of domestic violence and their families over the phone or in-person.
Complete training on the Coordinated Entry System and how to utilize it to access housing services for clients.
Work with Sarah’s Inn staff to enter their clients into the Coordinated Entry System.
Organize and prioritize daily services and responsibilities to ensure that client needs are met.
Advocate on behalf of victims of domestic violence and their families within various systems to include social service, housing, economic, legal, health care and education.
Ensure professional relationships with clients to create an atmosphere of empathy, safety and support.
Maintain accurate and current information regarding issues and policies impacting battered women and their families.
Design, plan and facilitate support and education groups.
Update and enhance knowledge of community resources and materials relevant to the clients we serve.
Coordinate responsibilities with team members to ensure client needs are met.
Update client files in a timely and accurate manner.
Update client case notes and service codes in a timely and accurate manner.
Maintain knowledge of internal organizational guidelines and protocols.
Work effectively with Intervention interns and volunteers.
Participate in the on-call rotation for crisis line in order to support crisis line volunteers and clients.
Build and enhance community relationships.
Partner with Housing Forward to assist with screening for domestic violence and to support those impacted through advocacy and case management.
Develop partnerships with homelessness prevention programs in West Suburban Cook County to grow referrals to Sarah’s Inn’s services.
Represent the organization with professionalism at community meetings and events, and demonstrate diplomacy and tact in all interactions with various system representatives and community partners.
Participate and provide leadership on various external committees, task forces, and councils as assigned.
Collaborate with other community and county agencies on behalf of the clients we serve.
Develop and maintain partnerships with community programs that are in line with the mission of Sarah’s Inn.
Educate community members and professionals about domestic violence and Sarah’s Inn services.
Provide community education presentations and professional trainings.
Participate in community awareness events.
Provide internal training to staff, volunteers, and interns.
This job has no supervisory responsibilities.
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
Location: Sarah’s Inn’s main office and various Housing Forward locations throughout the Western suburbs.
Education and/or Experience:
BA degree and/or equivalent experience required
One year or more experience providing direct service advocacy on behalf of victims of domestic violence and their families preferred.
One year or more experience providing counseling, advocacy, and/or case management services to families (volunteer and internship experiences included).
Completion of an Illinois Certified 40-Hour Domestic Violence Training preferred or required to complete within two months of employment.
Knowledge and Skills:
Excellent oral and written communication skills.
Excellent organizational skills.
Fluency in Spanish, oral and written, required.
Demonstrated computer experience.
Knowledge of victims’, children and youth issues specifically related to domestic violence.
Demonstrated ability to prioritize and handle a variety of tasks, and meet established deadlines.
Ability to develop and maintain positive relationships with a wide variety of people, including but not limited to board members, staff, volunteers, interns, government officials, community partners, organizational donors and media.
Commitment to and experience in working with people from diverse cultural, ethnic, socioeconomic backgrounds.
Ability to work some evening and weekend hours.
Valid driver’s license, access to a reliable car with current insurance.
Success Factors/Job Competencies:
Integrity& Ethics – models SAI Vision, Mission & Values
Customer Focus – demonstrates commitment to customer
Collaboration & Teamwork – embraces an inclusive workplace
Quality – produces quality work product
Innovation/Continuous Improvement – finds new and better ways of doing things
Job Knowledge – demonstrates a clear understanding of and executes roles and responsibilities
Time Management/Productivity – manages time and resources effectively
Problem Solving/Decision Making – demonstrates proper judgment, problem solving and decision making
Independence/Initiative – works with little or no supervision and seeks out new work
Communication – effectively communicates
Physical demands and work environment:
The physical demands and work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
Physical demands: While performing duties of job, incumbent is occasionally required to stand; walk; sit; use hands to finger, handle, or feel objects; reach with hands and arms; talk and hear. Specific vision abilities required by the job include close vision and distance vision.
Annual performance evaluation
Attainment of annual goals established between supervisor and incumbent
Sarah’s Inn is a community-based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to improve the lives of those affected by domestic violence and to break the cycle of violence for future generations. Our services and initiatives focus on ending relationship violence through domestic violence crisis intervention, community education, and violence prevention programs for youth.
Founded in 1981 by Oak Park residents, Sarah’s Inn works throughout the socioeconomically diverse region of Chicago’s West Side neighborhoods and Western suburbs. We believe in hopeful futures for survivors of domestic violence through the strength that comes from a networked and supportive community. The vision of Sarah’s Inn is to be a nationally recognized leader for community-based solutions that will end relationship violence.