Friday, November 1, 2013

Family Specialist (Mental Health Counselor)

Manatee Community Action Agency, Inc.
Position Description

Position:                             Family Specialist (Mental Health Counselor)

Division:                              Resource Connection for Families

Position Summary:           To provide in-home counseling to Healthy Families participants who have mental health, substance abuse and/or domestic violence issues

Supervises:                         N/A

Supervisor:                         Program Manager

Education and Experience Requirement:  Master's Degree in Psychology, Social Work, Counseling, or other similar degree from an  accredited college or university; Licensed in the state of Florida in Social Work (LCSW), Mental Health Counseling (LMHC) or Marriage and Family Therapy (LMFT); Minimum of two (2) years experience providing individual and/or family therapy to those affected by not just mental health issues, but also substance abuse and domestic violence

Specific Knowledge, Skills and Ability Requirements: A willingness to work with a diverse population in a culturally sensitive manner; Knowledge of the dynamics of child abuse and neglect, the effects of drug and alcohol abuse, parenting skills, and early childhood development; Good interpersonal skills and the ability to relate to participants and their families; The ability to deal tactfully with participants, co-workers, community agencies, and the general public; The willingness and ability to work a flexible schedule to accommodate the needs of the families served; A willingness to provide counseling services in homes that may be in high-crime areas; The ability to present himself/herself in a professional manner; Must possess the ability to work collaboratively within the Healthy Families program and with professionals and non-professionals outside of the program; Be proficient in reading, writing, and speaking both the English and Spanish language.  

Certifications and License Requirements:  Documentation of a valid Florida Driver’s License and able  to be insured by under our insurance; Licensed in the state of Florida in Social Work (LCSW), Mental Health Counseling (LMHC) or Marriage and Family Therapy (LMFT) 

Salary Grade:      Negotiable

Position Classification:  Exempt

Duties and Responsibilities:

Direct Services to Families
•             Initiate voluntary in-home assessment and counseling services shortly after enrollment or at
the request of an FSW during services. A referral to the family specialist could also be initiated by the FSW for on-going cases which are proving very difficult and involve major family crisis, addictions, mental health issues, child abuse/neglect and/or domestic violence.
•             Conduct psycho-social assessments to determine strengths, extent of the problems, the
families’ readiness to engage in treatment and barriers to intervention
•             Encourage families to accept services beyond the counseling services they provide, such as
prescription psychotropic medication, detox for substance abuse, etc., if needed
•             Follow-up with family and service providers on these specialized services
•             Develop and update treatment plans with input from families and FSWs and supervisors to
               address concerns identified at the initial assessment or during services
•             Work with the family in partnership with the FSWs and accompany the FSW on home visits,
as appropriate
•             Conduct parent support groups, as appropriate

Consultation and Support to Family Support Workers
•             Work with families and FSWs to improve follow-through on the treatment plan. The FSWs wil
l continue to provide the core home visiting services.
•             Review home visiting and supervision records prior to any staffings
•             Lead/facilitate staffings with all FSWs and their supervisors to discuss ongoing challenges and
progress of families and to share best practices
•             Provide one-on-one consultation to FSWs, as needed, on how to encourage participants and
members of their family to accept the services of the family specialist
•             Provide one-on-one consultation, as needed, to offer specific strategies for working with
families who are not open to family specialist’s services
•             Provide training such as working with overburdened families and the principles of infant
mental health, promoting attachment and recognition of attachment difficulties

Documentation and Record-keeping
•             Participate in service planning (family support plan) with the FSWs and the families served by
the family specialist
•             Review the initial Healthy Families assessment narrative to determine whether or not the
family may require enhanced services 
•             Document services provided using the required forms and submit forms for data entry

Other Activities
•             Participate in supervision meetings between the FSW and the FSW supervisor when
discussing families served by both staff
•             Attend Family Specialist Core, Domestic Violence, Child Abuse and Neglect and Substance
Abuse trainings provided by the Healthy Families Central Office

•             Participate in monthly conference calls to discuss challenges and best practices that address
these challenges
•             Attend one two-day meeting facilitated by the Healthy Families Central Office to receive
technical assistance and training, and to develop strategies for improving service delivery
•             Responsible for maintaining positive relationships and creating new relationships with
community-based resources to which families are referred

This position description outlines the general responsibility of the position, but does not serve as a limitation regarding the duties required by an employee assigned to the described position. All employees are required to work as part of a team to fulfill the organization’s mission and in so doing to perform tasks as necessary.

Linda Hedrick
Healthy Families Manatee, Assistant Director Manatee Community Action Agency, Inc.
302 Manatee Avenue East, Suite 200
Bradenton, FL 34208
P: 941.827.0188 x7720
F: 941.748.0617

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