The Esperanza Project, CHS’ newest housing assistance program, is a collaborative effort between CHS, Omicelo (a mission-focused real estate company), and property management company, Aegis. This innovative program’s mission is to help stabilize families in subsidized housing. The project has four objectives: 1. Preventing homelessness through safe, stable, and affordable housing; 2. Improving families’ quality of life through a supportive community that includes the property owner, who works in tandem with the residents, community members, and local collaborative; 3. Aligning human services providers to provide much greater access to health, human, and other critical services; and 4. Improving the stability of the community by reducing evictions and turnovers.
As a critical piece to the Esperanza project, the Family Navigator will work collaboratively with the partner agencies to accomplish the goals and mission of the project. The Family Navigator will work in partnership with 20-30 families in the Homewood area to stabilize housing, increase quality of life and connect families to needed resources. The key role of the Family Navigator is to be dually educated about the range of services and requisite program requirements that are available to support a family’s health and well-being while maintaining an intentional connection with each family to assess, respond and follow-up to the family’s needs in a timely and respectful manner.
The Family Navigator serves as the single point of contact for a family and provides case management that may include direct service or referrals for behavioral health, physical health, workforce and education development, and connection to mainstream resources. This position requires a high degree of efficient autonomy, organization, cross-agency communication, and an understanding of services available in the area for low-income families. Although the position will be supervised by the Director of Supportive Services, the Family Navigator will work closely with the Omicelo team on a daily basis which includes constant communication, planning and creative problem-solving between the two agencies. The work will primarily be conducted in the field where the families reside, in the Homewood neighborhood of Pittsburgh.
CHS uses the Housing First and Harm Reduction service delivery models, assisting clients with housing as the immediate need without prerequisites to abstain from any harmful behavior prior to being housed or receiving assistance. We help clients identify their own goals and support them to discover safer alternatives.
- Works collaboratively with CHS, Omicelo and Aegis to identify families that may need housing stability support and/or eviction prevention.
- Interview families to identify each family members’ immediate short and long-term needs including behavioral health, physical health, education, nutrition, etc.
- Educate and discuss the various support services available to the family. This includes identifying the unique strengths and challenges of each family member and connecting them to needed services, either internally or externally.
- Ensure each family has a Primary Care Physician to address wellness visits, emergency plans, prescription compliance, and help establish a health plan with their wellness professionals.
- Support families with coordinating and scheduling appointments and reminders.
- Conduct monthly unit inspections and report any building deficiencies to Aegis for repairs.
- Ensure families have the resources and ability to pay their rent on time and work with the partner agencies if there are barriers to paying rent on time.
- Review the tenant housing agreement with families periodically. Help reinforce the family’s responsibility of being a good tenant and community member. Make proactive reminder calls to help keep families on a positive health and financial tract.
- Meet with families monthly to update goal plans, family progress, discuss tenant requirements and report feedback to property management.
- Fulfill reporting obligations to Director of Supportive Services and Chief Housing Officer.
- Maintain accurate and detailed data tracking mechanisms to ensure positive outcomes for families and ensures programs are in compliance with regulatory bodies.
- Utilize the CHS database and any other mechanisms required by the program or funders to promptly and accurately record case notes and other critical information.
- Provide feedback on program, process and staff development to help improve processes.
- Participate in appropriate training programs to enhance own professional and personal development.
- Meet all training requirements as required by governing bodies.
- Equivalent work, education, and life experience typically gained by a Bachelors Degree and 4 years of direct service experience including service coordination, intensive case management, and housing/homelessness services.
- Adhere and promote the CHS Core Values in all aspects of the work: Quality, Respect, Relevance, Advocacy and Equity.
- Strong history and understanding of work across community resources, public benefits, local social service agencies, and assessment skills.
- The ability to represent partner agencies in community meetings.
- Exceptional organizational, communication and case management skills.
- Ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing.
- Sensitivity toward individuals and families in need of program services.
- Commitment to the project and both agencies’ missions.
- Computer literacy with a working knowledge of Microsoft Word, Outlook and Excel.
- Have reliable transportation and the ability to travel independently. This is a mobile position, so significant travel between Homewood and throughout the County is expected.