Youth Specialist

Position Title: Youth Specialist


Reports to Position Title:  Unit Director                                                                        FLSA:  Non-Exempt

Purpose & General Description of the Position:  This position is responsible for assisting children with daily living and recreational activities, and to effectively discipline, coach and counsel child to encourage proper and appropriate behavior and to support established treatment plans for the children, and maintaining a “household” including cleaning activities, transporting children, etc.

Minimum Requirements:

  • High school diploma required and at least 24 credit hours of college level studies at an accredited college or university in sociology, social work, psychology, Criminal Justice, education , recreation or other related field.
  • Valid Michigan Driver’s license and a driving record acceptable to Whaley Children's Center’s insurance carrier.
  • Meet State "Good Moral Character" guidelines
  • Experience in children’s residential treatment programs or equivalent knowledge preferred.

Required Skills and Abilities:

  • Ability to establish and maintain effective communication (written and oral) and working relationships with co-workers and children.
  • Ability to assist children with daily living and recreational activities and to effectively discipline, teach, and counsel children to encourage appropriate behavior and to support established treatment plans for the children.
  • Ability to maintain accurate records and to complete written reports regarding the behavior, activities, and status of children.
  • Ability to assess, interpret, and respond appropriately to verbal and non-verbal communications of children and other Whaley staff.
  • Ability to understand cause and effect relationships and the interrelatedness of one’s own behavior relative to the behavior of others.
  • Physical and organizational abilities necessary to regularly complete activities to maintain a “household” including cooking, cleaning, shopping, transporting, yard work, etc.
  • Physical mobility and capacity to manage a violent and/or self-abusive child when restraint is required to assure the safety of the child, staff, other children, families, and/or others.
  • Physical ability to stand and/or walk up to 8 hours per shift; To frequently lift, carry and/or push 25 pounds; to occasionally lift, carry and /or push p to 100 pounds: and to bend reach, stretch, twist, turn, climb, kneel, crouch, grasp, and crawl.

Essential Duties:

  • Responsible for supervision of the residential children in a designated milieu.
  • Responsible for assisting children with daily living activities.
  • Responsible for planning, organizing, communicating, implementing and monitoring recreational activities.
  • Responsible for maintaining written records and logs regarding the behavior, activities, and status of children.
  • Responsible for participating in the development and implementation of treatment plans for children and communicating plans to others as appropriate.
  • Assists in the planning, organizing, communicating and implementation activities and daily functioning for the children.
  • Actively supervise and coach the children. 
  • Responsible for regularly completing activities to maintain a “household” including cooking, cleaning, shopping, transporting, yard work, etc.
  • Responsible for working with birth parents, extended family, foster/adoptive parents, referral agencies, and others in accordance with treatment plans, visitation schedules, court orders, etc.
  • Responsible for de-escalating angry children, physically guiding children needing assistance, and physically restraining children who are aggressive towards themselves or others.
  • Responsible for attendance at milieu team meetings.
  • Responsible for teaching, modeling, practicing, supporting and articulating the agency’s Circle of Courage Strength Based Program philosophy.
  • Responsible for providing  constant child supervision
  • Responsible for transporting children to school, medical appointments, etc.

Associated Duties: All other duties as may be assigned periodically by the Unit Directors, Assistant Unit Director and/or Residential Director

NOTE: This description is a summary of the responsibilities, duties, knowledge, skills, experience, abilities and qualifications associated with this position.  It is not an exhaustive list and may be changed at any time at the discretion of the Whaley Children’s Center.