Shelter Advocate – Floater (all shifts)

Job Purpose: The shelter advocate is responsible for providing safe shelter for battered women and their children. The shelter advocate works to empower battered and abused women and their children to make choices that result in safe, independent and violence-free lives.


Experience & Knowledge:

  • Minimum of High School education
  • Two years experience working with people
  • Knowledge of household management skills

Skills and Abilities:

  • Must be sensitive to the needs of others
  • Maintains confidentiality
  • Has the ability to work with adult and child survivors in a manner that is non-victimizing
  • Empowers survivors of domestic violence to make choices
  • Communicates and interacts with other staff, survivors of domestic violence and volunteers from various backgrounds
  • Acts as an advocate for survivors of domestic violence at all times
  • Maintains poise in crisis situations
  • Promotes a spirit of cooperation and communal living
  • Has the ability to act spontaneously
  • Exhibits flexibility within the work environment
  • Possesses the ability to work as part of a team that empowers survivors of domestic violence
  • Accepts change
  • Maintains personal appearance consistent with agency standards
  • Exhibits effective verbal and written communication skills
  • Assumes responsibility for personal learning

Job Related Training Courses/Programs:

  • Orientation
  • On-going in-service training on domestic violence and related issues
  • Crisis Intervention
  • Residential staff meetings and trainings
  • Receive 40 hours of training annually in area of Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, Trauma in form of care, cultural diversity to reflect DCFS standards.

Principal Duties and Responsibilities:

  1. Provides for survivor physical and emotional needs by
    • Establishing personal rapport with individual survivors, maintaining shelter security, distributing basic need items, conducting communal living and safety meetings, supervising shelter routines, arranging transportation, etc.
    • Demonstrates concern for others by listening carefully and without judgement.
    • Conducts in-takes on new admissions to the safe shelter by interacting with the Telephone Crisis Advocate to determine eligibility, welcoming the women (and her children) to the shelter, and completing the in-take packet.
    • Promotes personal safety of the survivor by working with survivors to complete an individualized safety plan and reviewing personal safety plans on a regular basis, securing the shelter at the designated time, evaluating current safety measures and making suggestions for increasing safety precautions in and around the shelter.
    • Broadens the adult and child survivors’ view of self by providing educational information on domestic violence, self-esteem, self-expression, children’s issues on a daily basis, and working with the survivor to identify personal resources.
  2. Promotes a harmonious communal living arrangement by
    • Working with the residents to complete the daily chore list,
    • Treating all residents as equals and interacting with residents in a way that is non-blaming,
    • Remaining on active duty each night until midnight, and
    • Conducting random checks in the shelter throughout the night.
  3. Maintains the cleanliness of the residential facility by
    • Completing and turning in a daily task list,
    • Receiving, sorting and distributing donations and food deliveries from 8:00 a.m. To 9:00 a.m. Daily,
    • Following the regular cleaning schedule posted in the shelter.
  4. Provides crisis intervention for residents of the safe shelter by
    • Conducting individual and group peer counseling sessions and
    • Answering the agency crisis lines daily from 8:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. and from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. on holidays.
    • Enter data into Wellspring Call Center Database when calls are answered.
  5. Assures quality service by
    • Enforcing program guidelines and Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) program standards and by
    • Following agency procedures.
  6. Assumes responsibility for professional development by
    • Attending educational workshops, seminars and agency staff meetings and trainings.
  7. Contributes to the team effort by
    • Communicating effectively with other staff persons,
    • Exhibiting as willingness to help other staff,
    • Demonstrating flexibility in work situations,
    • Engaging in friendly, supportive and cooperative contacts with others.
  8. Maintains safety of clients and staff at all times by:
    • Complying with agency procedures, rules and regulations
  9. Performs other duties as related to the position and as assigned
    • Work non-traditional hours and/or alternate schedule during special projects or to meet agency deadlines