Position Profile


Job Title:  Caseworker

Ministry:   Alberta Children's Services

Competition Number:  1043200

Date:  June 2017
 

Purpose

 

Alberta Children and Youth Services is committed to ongoing improvement and pursuit of excellence in services to children, youth and families. The Casework Practice Model builds on the evolution to-date and the ongoing evolution of casework practice and directions provided by the Child Youth and Family Enhancement Act (CYFE Act). The CYFE Act places a great emphasis on assessment of children and families in determining the safety of the child, the need for intervention and the type of intervention required. The Casework Practice Model is based on the philosophy that children, youth and families should have input into the decisions that affect their lives. Assessment, engagement and collaboration are cornerstones of the Model.

The Caseworker along with the family, Assessor and the service team members works to develop the case plan and provides services to children and families. The Caseworker is responsible for ongoing re-assessment of children youth and families, case planning and provision of/or management of, services and interventions to meet the child’s/youth’s/ family’s unmet needs within specified timeframes. The Caseworker engaging families, helps them to understand their situation, and works with them to address issues causing the child to be in need of intervention.

This position engages child/youth, family and community supports to reduce risk to child/youth, promote permanency and better outcomes for child/youth and families. It also establishes or enhances existing relationships and partnerships in order to provide services to children and their families.

The Caseworker is also responsible for preparing parents and children for court and preparing all necessary court documents.

Responsibilities and Activities

 

Ongoing Re-Assessment of Children, Youth and Families

Undertakes ongoing re-assessment of child/youth at risk, and families to inform/build the case plan, using a strengths based approach incorporating the three domains of Parental Capacity, Child Development, Environmental Factors and complete the Assessment Record to a satisfactory level of detail including consideration of:

  • Risk/safety factors
  • Resiliency of family and child
  • Community supports
  • Collaborates with the family and the Assessor in the development of the case plan
  • Shares information and appropriate documentation with families during assessment and service provision
  • Uses the re-assessment information to track progress of the case and inform case plan revisions

Case Planning

Reviews and develops case plans using the assessment analysis and collaborates with child/youth, family and community supports during a case conference and follows up with subsequent case conferences to monitor case plan and service provision and ensure that the child’s needs are being met.

  • Continually assesses the level of risk, makes key decisions and responds in a timely manner
  • Analyzes and records conclusions around contributing factors to risk of child or youth, and makes recommendations around appropriate interventions every three months, or sooner if required by policy or Intervention Standards
  • Identifies and connects/refers child/youth and families to appropriate resources
  • Arranges and chairs case conference (when undertaking case plan review/re-assessment)
  • Assess client’s motivation, capacity and opportunity to make changes to resolve the intervention concern(s)
  • Advocates for child/family in community and links to services
  • Involves First Nations Band Designate/Métis Resource Person during the assessment and case planning and review phase for case planning, cultural connection, priority placement and registration
  • Organizes/Provides transportation of child/youth at risk for purpose of interview, for removal from home or urgent apprehension of child/youth
  • Enables or supports conflict resolution between family members and families and service teams where appropriate, makes referrals to formal or informal alternative dispute resolution supports and/or facilitates family group conferencing for resolution of issues in support of the child/youth at risk
  • Measures and records progress towards goals and outcomes to support families in identifying the achievement of case plan objectives
  • Ensures goals and tasks are realistic, measurable, time-limited and understandable to all parties in case planning
  • Prepares and facilitates placement of child being placed outside the familial home when necessary for the child
  • Works with caregivers to sustain positive placement for the child
  • Completes Youth Transition Plans
  • Conducts concurrent planning with the family
  • Addresses the relationship between assessment, re-assessment, case planning, and provision of intervention services to achieve permanence earlier for a child

Provision of Interventions

Organizes services to stabilize family and to mitigate risk to child/youth by addressing risk factors when required

  • Undertakes immediate response and safety planning
  • Provides interventions as indicated in the Case Plan
  • Monitors services provided to ensure appropriately meeting the needs of the child and family
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of the intervention
  • Undertake strategic brokerage of services:
    • Specialized services
    • Purchasing and matching services to family’s needs
  • Consults with supervisor and may include decision 6 (post case plan) Provides rationale for reason for closure
  • Engages with the family by developing a supportive relationship
  • May act as the Guardian to the child

Management of Legal Aspect

Utilizes court processes to alleviate the risk and safety for the child:

  • Undertakes court work including:
    • Documentation/legal documents
    • Presentation of evidence
    • Preparing/serving documents
    • Preparing parents and child for court
    • Following rules of evidence
    • Interfacing with Police Enforcement Agencies
    • Undertaking Risk Management ensuring correct type of order is sought to deal with the risk to the child (Supervision or Apprehension)
    • Liaising with Child, Youth and Family Advocate

Engagement of Child and Family

Creatively engages and works with the family members during re-assessment and case planning phases:

  • Uses the re-assessment process to assist the family to understand their situation
  • Shares information in an open and transparent way with the family
  • Develops a professional helping relationship and partnership with the child or family to jointly work on ways to address the issues causing the child to be in need of intervention
  • Enables or supports conflict resolution between family members and families and service teams where appropriate, make referrals to formal or informal alternative dispute resolution supports and/or facilitate family group conferencing for resolution of issues in support of the child/youth at risk

Engagement of Community

Creatively engages and works with the community during re-assessment and case planning phases:

  • Collaborates with community members and organizations to support community capacity (improve access) to provide services to child/youth at risk and family
  • Consults with First Nations Band Designate/Métis Resource Person where the child/youth is of First Nations or Métis descent
  • Incorporates knowledge of diverse values, community standards, norms, lifestyles, cultures, ethnicities and spirituality of children and families in assessments, case planning and placement
  • Participates in:
    • Networking
    • Community partnerships
    • Building relationships within the community
    • Public education
    • Communities of practice
  • Actively engages in permanency planning for children (return to home; adoption; private guardianship; transition to adulthood)
  • Ensures successful transition to adulthood through the completion and implementation of the Youth Transition Plans

Administration and Documentation

Creates a formal record of all processes involved in decision making for each file:

  • Undertakes timely/accurate documentation (forms, records and file requirements according to file standards)
  • Utilizes current technology for documentation (including CYIM and ISIS)
  • Keeps all records and files up to date
  • Completes all required documentation
  • Organizes meetings such as supervisor consultations and organize and chair case conferences
  • Documents discussion and outcome of formal supervision at the decision points with supervisors

Guardianship

To secure permanent placement and care for the child:

  • Assists with Youth Transition Plans
  • Ensures and plans for the child’s developmental needs and acts as parent regarding meeting these needs specifically including:
    • Spiritual
    • Cultural
    • Physical
    • Educational
    • Social
    • Emotional
  • Where there is a Temporary Guardianship Order facilitates contact and arrangements relating to shared guardianship, collaborating and respecting parent’s contributions and educating parents where necessary
  • Addresses all Guardianship and custody needs as required by legislation and policy

Consultation with Supervisor

Consults with the Supervisor at each Decision Point including Decision 5 (Determination of the outcome of the Assessment Update and Case Plan Review) and at Decision 6 (Closure) where applicable

  • Discusses, with the Supervisor, the approach taken and activities relating to:
    • Assessing strengths and needs of family and level of risk of child/youth
    • Engaging the community
    • Collecting information through collaterals, CYIM, ISIS and files as well as caller
    • Case planning and approach to be taken to case conference
  • Advises the Supervisor of sensitive matters, service gaps and/or emerging trends developing for further consideration

Scope

 

The Caseworker practices with considerable independence and is expected to consult with the Supervisor at two identified decision points of the model providing rationale for their recommendations.

Decisions are driven by consideration for the child, youth and their family and the Worker’s professional judgement within the parameters of the Act, Regulation, Policies and Standards and philosophy of the Casework Practice Model.

This position impacts children and youth safety and the family’s capacity to provide a safe and stable environment:

  • Impacts the community’s knowledge about children in need and the community’s capacity to be a support to the child and family
  • Works with clients and collaterals with cross cultural diversity
  • Meets unique needs of each child and their families
  • Utilizes creative ways to engage others to be part of the team (family, service teams)
  • Leads case conferences with multiple disciplines, professionals, family and other service teams
  • Continually re-assess the situation to determine the need and identify the appropriate intervention and supports to meet the needs of each child and their family
  • Continually monitors and evaluates the effectiveness of services and supports for the individual child and their family on a regular basis
  • Provides information and strong rationale to the supervisor for two key decision points of the Casework Practice Model
  • Deals with vulnerable clients, children at risk and safety issues, volatile clients, drugs and alcohol and family violence issues in court
  • Engages the community to support permanency and case planning goals
  • Builds and maintains relationships and networks with collaterals in order to provide appropriate timely services
  • Provides direct service delivery including counselling and mediation
  • May act as the Guardian
  • Jointly develops a case plan with the family and Assessment Caseworker, service teams, caregivers and other support persons
  • Evaluates provision of services(s) to ensure quality and that services are meeting needs of child, youth and family
  • Meets fiscal stewardship and court work responsibilities

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

 

EDUCATION/EXPERIENCE:

  • Bachelor of Social Work with some related experience or equivalency.

PRACTISE

CORE Competency: Theory and Practise

Human Services Workers will:

  • Identify, articulate, and demonstrate application of one’s own personal practice approach
  • Demonstrate critical thinking and assessment skills in the planning and decision-making processes
    Demonstrate knowledge of factors and conditions that impact family functioning and will apply that knowledge to one’s own role
  • Demonstrate knowledge of child development and how it may be impacted by environmental and organic factors or conditions and apply that knowledge in one’s role
  • Identify, articulate, and demonstrate a range of child management strategies
  • Demonstrate knowledge of indicators of child abuse and neglect and can apply procedures and protocols appropriately to one’s role
  • Have a working knowledge of and exercise safety strategies for self and others

Casework Competency: Practice Skills and Knowledge

Caseworkers will:

  • Use a multi-disciplinary approach in assessment and casework practice
  • Gather, analyze and interpret information using a strength-based approach to formulate a case an analysis and make decisions for case planning
  • Accurately identify, document and respond to physical, emotional and behavioral indictors of abuse and neglect
  • Identify and apply strategies to engage and involve children, youth and families in the on-going assessment and case planning processes.
  • Be able to prepare for court (e.g., file review, affidavit, applications, service, subpoenas, court report), complete necessary court documents and present evidence in court
    Ensure goals and tasks are realistic, measurable, time-limited and understandable to all parties in case planning
    Be able to evaluate the effectiveness of the intervention
  • Develop and implement strategies to promote permanence for children
  • Assess client’s motivation, capacity and opportunity to make changes to resolve the intervention concern(s)
  • Continually assess the level of risk, make key decisions and respond in a timely manner
  • Be able to identify criteria and implant procedures for effectively terminating services once the family’s needs are met
  • Maintain the balance between protecting children and supporting and strengthening children and families
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply the principle of guardianship and being a guardian

COMMUNICATION SKILLS

Effective listening and non-verbal communication skills.

CORE Competency: Communication

Human Service Workers will:

  • Demonstrate the ability to conduct planned and purposeful interview or communication exchanges
  • Demonstrate the ability to ask for, receive and give feedback
  • Educate and provide needed information to others
  • Demonstrate the ability to respond appropriately to anger and hostility
  • Describe and demonstrate a range of accepted conflict resolution, negotiation and problem-solving techniques

Casework Competency: Communication

Caseworkers will:

  • Demonstrate the ability to interview children and adults
  • Engage in culturally sensitive dialogue with individuals and families to ensure a shared understanding of the assessment, case analyses and case planning

VALUES

Values are consistent with the Alberta Government values of: respect; accountability; integrity; and excellence.

CORE Competency: Values

Human Services Workers will:

  • Demonstrate respect towards clients, colleagues and community members
  • Demonstrate genuine interest and caring about individuals and their journeys
  • Incorporate belief in family strengths into own practice
  • Practice in a manner that reflects the uniqueness of each child

Casework Competencies: Values

Caseworkers will:

  • Have values and beliefs that support the preservation of families and the protection of children and youth
  • Have a belief that all children and families have unique strengths and have a right to self-determination.
  • Have a belief in alternate dispute resolution
  • Have a commitment to continuously enhance quality of case practice
  • Demonstrate respect, empathy, sensitivity, and behave ethically towards clients, colleagues and community members
  • Have a belief that the family is the expert in their circumstance and they have the ability to realize their own potential
  • Have a belief that one’s work with families is transparent
  • Have a belief that one’s work with families and colleagues is collaborative effort

PROFESSIONALISM

  • Ability to demonstrate respect, empathy, sensitivity and behave ethically towards clients, colleagues and community members
  • Committed to continually enhancing quality of case practice

CORE Competency: Professionalism

Human Service Workers will:

  • Know and adhere to the code of conduct and ethics of the organization
  • Understand and adhere to the principles of: respecting dignity; individuality; right to self-determination; building on strengths.
  • Understand one’s role and perform within the scope of one’s responsibilities
  • Have awareness of own processional authority and influence, its impact on others and will use that authority and influence appropriately.
  • Be aware of how one’s own personal experience and values impact professional behavior and judgment
  • Develop and maintain professional relationships with others
  • Demonstrate adaptability, flexibility and creativity in responding to opportunities, challenges and change
  • Demonstrate personal responsibility and accountability for decision made and actions taken within one’s role
  • Evaluate and take initiative in enhancing professional effectiveness within one’s role
  • Demonstrate the ability to act as an advocate
  • Plan, organize, and manage work, set priorities and perform activities in a manner that best uses existing resources and time
  • Understand the origins and consequences of work-related stress and use coping and management skills to promote wellness

Casework Competency: Professionalism

Caseworkers will:

  • Present self in a supportive, concerned and respectful manner from initial contact
  • Respond to varying levels of crisis and complexity and work within an environment that can present unknown and unpredictable elements
  • Acknowledge the intrusive nature of one’s role and practice in a manner that respects the rights of the child, youth and family
  • Recognize trauma inherent in this work and take action to manage the impact on one’s self
  • Have a working knowledge of applicable policies and standards related to caseworker’s safety

DIVERSITY

CORE Competency: Diversity

Human Service Workers will:

  • Practice in a manner that reflects understating of and respect for cultural, ethnic, spirituality and lifestyle diversity.
  • Incorporate knowledge of diverse values, community standards, norms, lifestyles, cultures, ethnicities and spirituality of children and families in assessments, case planning and placement

Casework Competencies: Diversity

Caseworkers will:

  • Incorporate knowledge of diverse values, community standards, norms, lifestyles, cultures, ethnicities and spirituality of children and families in assessments, case planning and placement
  • Practice in a manner that respects the unique history, traditions and experiences of Aboriginal people
  • Practice in a manner that respects the unique history, traditions and experience of immigrant people
  • Respect and support the unique abilities and practice styles within one’s team.

LEGISLATION, REGULATIONS, POLICY, STANDARDS AND SYSTEMS

Working knowledge of following legislation as they relate to and impact assessment and casework practice and service delivery:

  • Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act and Regulations
  • Family Law Act
  • Protection of Sexually Exploited Children Act
  • Freedom of Information and Privacy Act
  • Family Supports for Children with Disabilities Act
  • Drug Endangered Children Act
  • Protection Against Family Violence Act
  • Protection of Children Abusing Drugs Act
  • Other new Acts as implemented that directly relate to assessment and casework practice
  • Working knowledge of applicable regulations, policy standards and protocols regarding service delivery
  • Working knowledge of court system related to role and responsibility of child, family and the Intervention Services Caseworker
  • Working knowledge of procedures for initiating, obtaining, and maintain legal authorities under the Act

General knowledge of:

  • Youth Criminal Justice Act
  • Criminal Code
  • Mental Health Act
  • School Act
  • Indian Act
  • Charter of Rights and Freedom
  • Dependent Adult Act
  • Alberta Health Act

CORE Competency: Legislation and Systems

Human Service Workers will:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the organizational structure of the Ministry, the various delegated agencies, Authorities and own worksite, and the relationships under which they operate.
  • Understand and describe the mission, goals and program of the Ministry, the Authority or delegated agency and the worksite.
  • Know, interpret and apply relevant legislation, regulations and policy.
  • Demonstrate an awareness and understanding of jurisdictional protocols as they relate to one’s role.
  • Identify systemic issues and advocate for improvements within the organizational structure.
  • Have an awareness of risk management and liability as it relates to one’s role and can respond to sensitive issues according to organizational protocols.
  • Have an awareness of risk management and liability as it relates to one’s role and can respond to sensitive issues according to organizational protocols.
  • Understand and use relevant administrative, financial, and information management systems.
  • Adhere to the confidentiality guidelines of the organization
  • Know and understand communities served and resources (internal and external, formal and informal) available within that community

Casework Competency: Legislation, Policy, Standards and Systems

Caseworkers will:

  • Demonstrate working knowledge of the Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act and regulations and apply this knowledge to one’s role
  • Interpret and apply other relevant legislation, regulations and protocols that guide intervention practice.
  • Know the policy, standards and protocols regarding service delivery and recognize the implications for practice
  • Demonstrate a working knowledge of the court system as it relates to the roles and responsibilities of the child, the family and the caseworker
  • Know the mandates of and work collaboratively with other government departments and community agencies
  • Know the procedures for initiating, obtaining, and maintaining legal authorities under the child, youth and Family Enhancement Act
  • Know the legislation and policy regarding the various legal statuses and recognize the implications for practice

COURT WORK

Working knowledge of court system related to role and responsibilities of the child, the family and the Intervention Services Caseworker:

  • Ability to prepare and present evidence in court
  • Knowledge of unique local judicial court procedures and processes
  • Ability to meet evidentiary and court documentation requirements
  • Knowledge of court procedures
  • Knowledge of procedures for initiating, obtaining and maintaining legal authorities under the Act
  • Ability to prepare the child, youth and family and other related partiers for court
  • Know the mandates of and work collaboratively with other government departments and community agencies
  • Know the legislation and policy regarding the various legal statuses and recognize the implications for practice

PARTNERSHIP, COLLABORATION AND TEAMWORK

CORE Competency: Partnership and Teamwork

Human Service Workers will:

  • Cultivate, establish and enhance working relationships with a wide network of individuals, interest groups, and service providers
  • Work collaboratively and productively with others to achieve results
  • Actively participate as a team member

Casework Competency: Partnerships, Collaboration and Teamwork

Caseworkers will:

  • Have knowledge of community resources and demonstrate the ability to facilitate linkages
  • Work cooperatively with colleagues and community for the best interests of the child and family
  • Identify service gaps and advocate for solutions
  • Build collaborative relationships with all stakeholders
  • Have a working knowledge of how to develop partnerships and collaborative with Aboriginal and immigrant communities
  • Contribute to a collaborative partnership with one’s Supervisor/Team Lead

Contacts

 

To enable the safety of the child and the development of a comprehensive case plan that meets the identified needs of the child and their family the Interventions Services Caseworker has contact with:

  • Child with their family and may include extended family
  • Professionals (hospitals, schools)
  • Colleagues and supervisor
  • Community and contracted agencies and service teams as per the Matters to Be Considered in CYFE Act
  • Legal system (courts, lawyers, RCMP, police)
  • Other government program areas (i.e. Office of the Child and Youth Advocate)
  • Interest groups
  • First Nations Band Designate
  • Métis Resource Person

Supervision Exercised

 

None


 

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