BHIS Youth Advocate job vacancy in YSS – Jobs in Iowa

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Job Details
Company Name : YSS
Company Location : Des Moines, IA 50309
Job Position : BHIS Youth Advocate
Job Category : Jobs in Iowa

Job Description :

We are YSS:
Iowa Homeless Youth Centers (IHYC) helps those who are non-system involved, meaning they are not placed or directly supported by any governmental payment agency. An advocate works one-on-one with each client to help them set and achieve educational, employment, and independent living goals.

The role:
As a BHIS Youth Advocate, you will provide support to young people ages 16 through 24 years who are precariously-housed, experiencing homelessness, or at-risk of experiencing homelessness through the Youth Opportunity Center Drop In Center and Emergency Bed Program.

What you will need:

  • Bachelor’s degree in a social sciences field plus two years of full time experience or 20 hours training in child mental health; or a Bachelor’s degree in a non-social sciences field plus three years of full time experience or 30 hours training in child mental health is required.
  • This position should have a solid background and understanding of the needs homeless and precariously housed youth; behavioral intervention; solution-focused treatment theory, techniques, and process; knowledge of current DSM; knowledge of principles of child and adolescent development; knowledge of family counseling and dynamics; knowledge of community systems; crisis intervention; laws and legal ramifications of laws dealing with children’s rights; and knowledge of chemical dependency treatment interventions
  • Experience working with individuals of diverse identities, including racial, ethnic, gender, sexual orientation and socio-economic status is preferred.
  • An understanding of the dynamics of homelessness and trauma is essential.
  • At least 21 years old with a valid driver’s license to meet requirements to drive agency vehicles.
  • Ability to work evening hours.
  • Broad, working knowledge of Des Moines area resources to identify and connect young people to appropriate resources.

What you will do:

Youth Advocate (75%)

  • Conduct intakes with new youth and orient them to the Youth Opportunity Center.
  • Provide program information to potential participants, referral sources, and other groups, both in person and over the phone, as needed.
  • Supervise, provide support to and establish rapport with all YOC program participants, while maintaining an atmosphere of safety and respect.
  • Ensure clients have access to resources and services to assist in meeting their basic needs, including referrals to safe shelter, food, transportation, clothing, hygiene assistance, referrals to appropriate health care services and assistance in those accessing services, crisis intervention, including de-escalation, referrals to victim services, and assistance in accessing other community resources as needed.
  • Check-in any pocket knives or potential weapons from youth to ensure that there are no weapons or illegal substances unsecured in the facility.
  • Alert on-call staff or Program Manager of major incidents or emergencies.
  • Ensure safety, cleanliness, and appearance of the facility.
  • Clean out recently vacated rooms: bagging and labeling personal items, washing bedding, sweep/mop/sanitize entire room.
  • Assist and track inventory of household supplies, personal care products, and food items.
  • Daily data entry into Service Point including intakes, services and case notes. Complete all necessary logging, shift reports, and other documentation.
  • Attend all Team meetings and Staff meetings if scheduled during work hours.
  • Responsible for facilitating group sessions, including basic living skills as needed.
  • Responsible for presenting information related to Iowa Homeless Youth Centers and youth homelessness in the community as needed.
  • Must have broad, working knowledge of Des Moines area resources and ability to identify and connect young people to appropriate resources.

BHIS (25%)

  • Assess, observe, and document assigned participants’ behaviors and interactions as per agency policies and procedures.
  • Provides one-on-one skill development, and crisis intervention services to identified participants.
  • Advocate for and secure specialized services and resources as needed for participants to address identified problem areas.
  • Work as a team member in a collaborative effort with other IHYC staff, informal supports and referral sources.
  • Serves as a model for the participants in demonstrating how to deal with difficult interactions and communications with others.
  • Establishes positive relationships and networks within assigned service area.
  • Submits and keeps current a weekly work schedule of participant sessions.
  • Meets regularly with licensed master’s level prepared mental health practitioner authorizing BHIS services for clinical supervision and consultation.
  • Supports and helps facilitate interagency and community referrals for treatment services.

What we offer:

  • Downtown parking space
  • Fun team environment
  • Mission-driven work
  • Wellness program offerings
  • Discounts on pet insurance
  • Flexible shift and hours
  • Training and development opportunities

Full-time employee benefits include:

  • Medical, dental, vision, and life insurance
  • Supplemental accident, critical illness, and hospital indemnity insurance
  • Retirement
  • Birthday as a paid day off
  • Paid time off
  • Holiday pay
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • Years of service recognition
  • YSS is a qualified employer under the Public Student Loan Forgiveness Program.


As an employee of YSS, you will be part of one of Iowa’s largest youth-serving organizations and a passionate team that believes in putting kids first. Our programs focus on three key areas: prevention, treatment, and transition. Our staff plays a vital role in listening and letting youth know they are heard. In encouraging young people to be confident and make healthy choices. In turning hopelessness into hope. In helping youth stand strong.

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Location: 612 Locust, Des Moines, IA 50309Location: 612 Locust, Des Moines, IA 50309

Job Type: Full-time

Pay: $35,000.00 per year


  • 8 hour shift
  • Day shift
  • Evening shift
  • Monday to Friday
  • Night shift
  • Weekend availability

Ability to commute/relocate:

  • Des Moines, IA 50309: Reliably commute or planning to relocate before starting work (Required)


  • Driver’s License (Required)

Work Location: One location

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