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Specialist Support Worker at Justlife

Justlife works with people who are close to the streets, living in unsupported temporary accommodation (UTA). Justlife exists because we know that every time we don’t act another person living in unsupported temporary accommodation suffers. They suffer with deteriorating mental and physical health, become victims of crime, lose control of their life, drop off the bottom rung of the housing ladder or die prematurely. Our vision is clear and simple: to make people’s experience of housing vulnerability as short, safe and healthy as possible.

Justlife works in Manchester providing re-housing advice, benefits advice and one-to-one key work support to empower vulnerable adults housed in UTA to move towards more secure housing, independent living and improved health and wellbeing. We run a similar project in Brighton alongside a Hospital Discharge Project which, in partnership with the specialist homeless GP service Arch Healthcare, provides support to homeless people discharged from hospital into UTA.

Justlife have recently completed research mapping out the number of UTAs across Greater Manchester. Tenants were found to have low levels of wellbeing, were isolated, faced accommodation issues (poor food, no heating or hot water, limited access to kitchens, and feeling their accommodation was chaotic), experienced deteriorating mental or physical health and felt that they were limited in the support they could access.

Now that Justlife know WHERE individuals are, in the coming year they intend to roll out a new ‘mobile’ model of operating - taking their work OUT to reach beneficiaries where they are, enabling more residents to find out about and access the support Justlife provides.

The role of Specialist Support Worker involves playing an active part in the Specialist Support Team by taking part in regular outreach visits to UTA’s across Greater Manchester and supporting a caseload of clients that are experiencing varying stages of housing vulnerability. The role requires the use of specialist knowledge and relationship skills to support clients with varying degrees of mental health, addiction and trauma related issues to engage with health services and to access suitable housing solutions. The Specialist Support Worker is also expected to develop good working relationships with UTA Landlords and Managers recognising the important role that they play in ensuring that their tenant’s experience of UTA’s is as positive as possible.

This will include advocacy in registering them for medical services and accompanying them to appointments; assisting them in addressing all aspects of physical and mental health and addiction needs, as well as advocating for them to get access to suitable housing and social security benefits. The role is dependent on excellent communication and joint working with colleagues and a variety of partners and professionals.

The role requires a high degree of motivation in addition to creativity and flexibility to support complex and vulnerable people. With a passion to work collaboratively with others for the good of our clients, and with some experience of working in a related field in a voluntary or paid capacity.

A high degree of emotional intelligence is required to support clients, many of whom have complex emotional needs, with backgrounds of trauma, neglect, abuse, crime and low self-worth. In a role of this nature you will experience a range of emotions from joy to grief and as such it requires a high degree of resilience to cope with the emotional demands of the role.
Making decisions in the moment to do the right thing to mitigate risk with clients can place high emotional demands on the job holder. At times the role can be reactive and unpredictable. The role requires a high degree of self-awareness to one’s own resilience levels and exercising appropriate levels of self-care. The role sits within a highly supportive team with all staff in receipt of regular line management, external clinical supervision and professional training. With reflective practice actively encouraged in weekly team meetings.

This role requires an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check and a barred list check.

Interview dates week commencing: 21 September (tbc)

For more information and to apply click here

37.5 hours per week
£23,868 per annum
11 September, 2020 - 17:00
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