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Location: Strathroy, ON
Date Posted: Dec 02, 2021
Women's Rural Resource Centre Strathroy & Area

Job Description

At the Women’s Rural Resource Centre of Strathroy and Area (WRRC), we are leaders of the women’s movement in our local community: deepening understanding, fostering connection and casting vision for a world governed by principals of peace and not patriarchy.  We use a feminist lens and anti-oppressive framework to deliver prevention, education and crisis response to women and their families who have been impacted by violence and abuse in rural Middlesex. This includes a 24 hour helpline and emergency shelter, risk assessment and safety planning, advocacy, system navigation, counselling, groups and programming, a community garden and food cupboard, as well as leading community development and collaboration.  We have a bold vision to expand our agency through innovative partnerships while responding to emergent needs by experimenting, evolving and recreating ourselves to best serve the community we share. 

Summary: WRRC is seeking a strong woman-centred Outreach Counsellor.
Reporting to the Senior Manager of Programs and working with the Woman and Family Services Team the OC is accountable to create a safe and supportive environment for women impacted by violence and abuse to seek help.

Using a feminist, trauma-informed framework, the OC will work out in community to promote safety, provide advocacy, education and resources to support a woman navigating systems related to violence and abuse, homelessness, poverty, addiction and/or mental health.

At WRRC, we believe a woman is creative, resourceful and whole; the OC will work with a woman to support a care plan that is central to her experience at WRRC. The care plan is fluid and evolving, addressing her unique needs in crisis, prioritizing risk assessment and safety planning, progressing through her healing journey to support her growth and development towards a healthy and fulfilling life. As the OC you will work with both WRRC team members and broader community services, where appropriate to support a woman as she takes up leadership in her own life.

We are looking for an Advocate to join our team who cares about the same things. As a team, we aim to stretch, grow, challenge and champion each other, knowing we can only serve others well when we too are healthy and alive. If this stirs a fire in your belly, then consider joining our team!

Job Specifications:

Providing a Safe Environment
  • Ensure physically safe environment by selecting outreach counselling space that minimizes the risk to self and clients, consistently assessing and responding to safety risks posed by partners.
  • Ensure psychologically safe environment for clients by being respectfully accessible to women, addressing and resolving emotionally unsafe situations arising from relationship with client, by ensuring confidentiality of her information in accordance with agency policies, by taking her from where she is at and by being in healthy relationship with women, co-workers and themselves
  • Document interactions in accordance with agency policy, procedures and practices.

Providing Direct Service to Women
Enhance women’s capacity to make informed choices for themselves by:
  • Determining nature of their needs by conducting intakes and ongoing assessment of goals and needs;
  • Within 2 –3 sessions, establishing a course of action based on women’s needs and goals in consultation with the women which includes prioritizing these goals and needs and exploring options with the woman; by documenting this plan
  • Providing services which include meeting at least every other week for one hour to provide emotional support, self-care and education about woman abuse, its tactics and impact; ongoing risk assessment and safety planning, advocacy for internal and external services initiating referrals
  • Monitoring progress towards goal achievement and by revising the course of action as necessary and by documenting these
  • Maintaining archival and historical records of client service provision and generating statistical reports
  • Identifying issues and barriers inconsistent with quality, client-focused service and develop recommendations for plans to address these issues including program development
  • Assuming responsibility for personal and professional development

Community-based Advocacy
  • Increase awareness of issue of gender-based violence (GBV), its impacts on community and awareness of agency services by accepting and/or soliciting invitations for public presentations
  • Promote and support action geared at building safe communities and healthy relationships in context of presentations and involvement with other community members/groups
  • Enhance agency credibility and visibility by publicizing services through articles in newspapers, by organizing or participating in special events such as the Vigil, Walk against Violence and by representing the agency at external committees or events
  • Assessing and responding to community needs by rearranging outreach sites and service, by planning and responding to needs arising from publicized incidents of GBV

Required Qualifications:
  • BSW or equivalent university education,
  • A solid understanding of feminism, the women’s movement, anti-racism/anti-oppression and trauma informed practice
  • Superior communication, listening, conflict resolution, assessment and crisis intervention skills
  • Demonstrated organizational and multi-tasking skills;
  • Good working knowledge of computer office technology and applications
  • Clear current Police Vulnerable Sector Check (PVSC)
  • Ability to work independently as well as within a team with minimal supervision
  • CPR/ First Aid – Level C

  • Minimum 2 years counselling experience; counselling in the area of gender-based violence preferred.
  • Experience and understanding of alternative healing therapies.
  • The ability to make independent decisions based on experience and judgment; flexibility to work as a member of a team with minimal supervision.

Personal Characteristics:
  • Demonstrated mentorship and leadership ability in a manner in which supports the agency’s philosophy of leadership and growth of staff and program
  • Excellent conflict resolution skills; ability to facilitate difficult conversations in a diplomatic manner.
  • Demonstrated women’s advocacy skills, strong case planning skills and effective child/women-centered practice delivery.
  • Superior communication, listening and assessment skills.
  • Demonstrated organizational and multi-tasking skills;

Hours of Work:
This position may require variable day, evening, night, and/or weekend hours.
Working 37.5 hours per week, within Strathroy and local community. This position is offered as a contract until December 2022.

Direct Reports: none

Physical Requirements:
This position will require providing on-going emotional support and advocacy to women, youth, and children who have experienced gender-based violence in a secured shelter setting. 

Ability to lift 25 lbs.

Closing Date: Friday, January 7, 2022 at 5:00 pm
Submit Cover Letter and Resume by email to:

*No phone calls please. Only those selected for an interview will be contacted.*

NOTE - Please ensure Cover Letter & Resume are saved as ONE .pdf file, titled: LAST NAME, First name – Position