A Place Called Home provides a safe, nurturing environment with proven programs in arts, education and wellness for the young people in South Central Los Angeles to help them improve their economic conditions and develop healthy, fulfilling and purposeful lives.
APCH delivers its programs via a membership model that provides enrolled youth and families with services at no cost. Since inception, we have served more than 22,000 youth, and another 150,000 community members through civic, cultural, educational, and distribution events. This year we will serve about 1,000 unduplicated enrolled members ages 8 through mid-twenties in core programs, plus about 10,000 family and community members through supportive services and events. APCH’s programs are offered throughout the academic year in an afterschool and weekend model and during summer in an all-day camp format. Our programs sequentially support self-empowerment, build resiliency, encourage skill acquisition and scholastic achievement, and inspire discovery.
A Place Called Home is expanding and there are exciting plans and opportunities ahead. The Director of Counseling will provide strong leadership for APCH’s mental health and case management services and respective staff, driving and overseeing the department’s arc, daily work and advancement.
APCH is seeking a leader who, in collaboration with others, will re-envision the possibilities for providing mental health and case management services in the context of a community-based youth services organization in South Central Los Angeles, and lead in the implementation of this new departmental vision. They will develop a highly-effective and professional scope of services to serve the APCH membership community and provide additional limited services for the community at large.
APCH is distinctive for its holistic wraparound approach that addresses multiple areas of need including physical and mental health, nutrition, and family dynamic and function, as well as scholastic achievement and socioemotional development. Our case managers and clinicians in the Counseling Department ensure that the members’ daily care and learning experience is both informed by an awareness of trauma and focused on a process of healing. APCH counselors and program staff meet weekly to discuss member development and behavior, identify member and family issues as they arise, and work collaboratively to ameliorate them. Our highest-risk youth are screened and consistently monitored for depression and trauma, new members are on-boarded by case managers, and all staff are trained by the counseling team for mental health sensitivity and awareness. Care and unconditional regard for the whole child is the foundation upon which APCH was built, and is the starting point for all of our youth development and education programs. Family counseling and case management is also provided by our counseling team.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities
The Director of Counseling assumes the following responsibilities under the direction of the Senior Director of Programs and in collaboration with other senior management staff, including the Executive Management Team and RISE High administrators:
- Develops and implements high-quality mental health and case management services that improve the lives of youth and their families in South Central Los Angeles, helping them lead healthy, fulfilling, purposeful lives.
- Provides exemplary, innovative, collaborative, and dynamic leadership, and supports team participation throughout the organization.
- Selects, trains, leads, and supervises departmental staff and interns, including overseeing counselors performing individual, group, and family counseling sessions. Supervises a team currently consisting of an Associate Director of Counseling, a Lead Counselor, a Behavioral Interventionist, a Case Manager, a Health Care Aide, and an Assistant. Interns are regularly rotated through the department.
- Ensures that member progress is tracked through case notes and Individual Program Plans. Oversees wraparound services and Team Case Conferences.
- Promotes and normalizes an understanding of mental health wellness among members and their family members and seeks to de-stigmatize counseling services.
- In collaboration with program staff, integrates a mental health understanding into all program activities. Provides psycho-educational and socio-emotional support for members and parents. Supports collaborations of special projects such as peer mentoring Girl Power and Journey programs, integrating counseling components into these initiatives.
- Works across departments to identify and assess members in greatest need of counseling and case management services.
- Collaborates closely with the Mental Health staff of RISE (the DaVinci charter school for opportunity youth on the APCH campus) and the staff of APCH’s IMPACT program for opportunity youth to support the mental health needs of these members.
- Plans and implements professional development for department staff, including relevant specialized training, and provides coaching and training to non-counseling staff on mental and behavioral health issues and practice.
- Personally provides therapy to a limited number of youth and parents. Maintains an open-door policy for informal interactions with members.
- Oversees, reviews, and assesses Individualized Education Programs for impacted members and guides program leadership and counseling team in determining plan for support; assesses suitability of applicants with IEPs for APCH membership.
- Provides thought leadership and guidance regarding the APCH response to the cultural, racial and diversity, equity and inclusion needs facing our community.
- Develops relationships with and maintains referral and other collaborative relationships with partner organizations. Refers members for services of external providers when appropriate.
- Collaborating with the Membership Department, oversees Parent Advisories, monthly gatherings of families to present resources and information to families and to recruit families into other Counseling Department offerings
- Prevents and de-escalates harmful behavior in behavior crisis situations to reduce members’ risk of injury and ensure safety of others, using Nonviolent Crisis Prevention and Intervention (CPI) strategies.
- Trains counseling department staff in department procedures and program requirements. Oversees, creates, and maintains all relevant forms, documentation, and manuals for the Counseling Department. Maintains systems to ensure compliance with guidelines of regulating agencies. Understands, abides by, and enforces California’s Mandated Reporting Laws at APCH.
- Identifies, vets, and/or develops program evaluation materials and curriculum for department and collaborates on agency-wide iterations.
- Remains informed of best practices and seeks ways to continually improve APCH counseling and case management services.
- Compiles weekly reports for the Senior Director of Programs, Deputy Executive Director and Executive Director, monthly department reports including case studies, and quarterly Board reports for the Executive Director to integrate into an Executive Report for the Board.
- Manages department budget.
- Supports and collaborates with the Development Department to craft and steward funding applications and reports, and ensures that requirements of funding sources are met.
- Represents APCH at sector conferences, trainings, and convenings, and/or assigns other staff to attend, in service of relationship-development and constant improvement of APCH’s approach.
- Adheres to the highest ethical and professional standards and values at all times.
- Performs other tasks as assigned.
- Masters Degree in Counseling or Clinical Psychology
- Currently licensed in California (BBS) (LCSW) (LPCC) (LMFT)
- Knowledge of best practices in systems, counseling, youth development, management
- Certified or willing to become certified in Nonviolent Crisis Prevention (CPI)
- Minimum of 4-6 years of experience in clinical management, counseling programs for youth and families in at-risk environment with a comparable team size preferred
- Knowledge of program and curriculum development