Who We Are
Advance, Inc is a new non-profit started to address the needs of adults facing homelessness in Aurora, Colorado. With a goal of seeing adults gain the needed skills to secure and maintain high quality, dependable employment, and lasting, secure housing.
Advance brings together the needed talent, skills, and resources to empower individuals to embark on their journeys to a lifetime of housing stability and personal fulfillment. Following the philosophy of extending a “hand up,” staff at Advance not only provide needed tools for success, but mentor, train, and inspire Community Members to achieve their highest while offering them the long-term support they need to be successful for a lifetime.
Why work at Advance?
We believe in investing in our team members to be the best version of themselves while solving the complex problem of homelessness. You can be among the first employees to co-create and thrive in a culture that is rooted in professional development, values diversity and inclusion, and encourages creativity and innovation for trying new approaches to support long-term sustainability and independence for the people we serve.
Peer Support Specialist
The Peer Support Specialist reports to the Program Director and is responsible for:
1. Delivering programming to formerly homeless individuals in our community setting.
2. Creating, with the Advance team, a culture of safety and improved health for our Community Members.
3. Supporting Community Members in articulating personal goals.
4. Promoting Community Members’ long-term goals of gainful employment, acquisition of secure housing, and a lifetime of self-sufficiency.
5. Ensuring Community Members are working effectively toward goals and milestones in all areas of their lives with the eventual objective of transitioning to an independent, self-sufficient, safe, and sober living environment.
● Use your personal and practical experience, knowledge, and first-hand insight to benefit and support the team.
● Employ a strengths-based model to promote personal growth, development, and recovery in Community Members served.
● Provide assistance, support, and advocacy for Community Members to identify goals, acquire/learn needed skills, and encourage Members as they overcome obstacles to achieving goals.
● Attend organizational meetings, meet with external partners and coalitions, and regularly meet with Community Members.
One-to-One Peer Support
● Using your experience in recovery, assist Community Members in articulating personal goals through the use of one-on-one and group sessions. During these sessions, support Community Members as they identify and create goals and develop recovery plans with the strengths, supports, and resources needed to realize these goals toward self-directed recovery.
● Support Community Members as they identify, understand, and combat stigma and discrimination associated with mental health, substance use disorder, and homelessness and develop strategies to reduce self-stigmatizing thoughts and behaviors.
● Assist Community Members in creating and taking part in community-based self-help (mutual support) groups as well as identifying and joining existing groups.
● Teach and model problem solving techniques for Community Members incorporating your own story of recovery where appropriate and/or calling on expertise and knowledge of the team.
● Actively participate, collaborate, and contribute to the team to promote an inclusive and respectful culture for Community Members and staff.
● Respond to crises as they arise in a manner respectful of Community Members’ individual narratives and backgrounds.
● Solicit, listen, and respond to client feedback about services.
● Assist individual Community Members with an experience of homelessness in their transition into long-term stable housing and beyond.
● Mentor and lead Community Members in skill-building activities, goal setting, and problem-solving in life, career, relationship, nutrition, health, and overall wellness for the long-term.
● Facilitate Community Member connections with substance use treatment programs and to on-site/telehealth mental health resources.
● Cultivate and maintain a supportive working environment that embraces trauma-informed and culturally competent interactions.
● Engage Community Members in chores and weekly cleanup activities.
Data Collection and Documentation
● Maintain and ensure confidentiality of all Community Member information.
● Complete all necessary documentation with accuracy and in a timely manner.
Professionalism and Teamwork
● Understand and follow the policies and procedures.
● Attend required meetings and regular supervision, focusing on mastering core competencies of the Peer Support Specialist position.
● Attend and participate in formal and informal staff meetings; address Community Member and program issues as a team where appropriate.
● Provide excellent internal and external customer service; communicate in a professional,
timely, and effective manner.
● Actively participate, collaborate, and contribute to promote a team culture respectful of each Community Member’s unique perspective, background, challenges, strengths, goals, and potentialities.
● Complete other duties as assigned.
● Two (2) years’ experience in services to persons experiencing homelessness, substance use disorder, mental illness, or other related areas.
● High School Diploma or equivalent.
● Prior or current recipient of mental health, substance use treatment, and/or homeless services, with the ability to role-model recovery, actively participating in their own recovery.
● Two (2) years or more in recovery is preferred. All pathways are honored.
● At least one year of being successfully housed is preferred.
● Experience in operating computerized office equipment and telephones.
● Reliable transportation and ability use a vehicle for work throughout the day.
● Time management skills with the ability to meet a deadline.
● Excellent written and verbal communication.
● Administrative Skills.
● Conflict mediation/resolution skills.
● Ability to relate to people from diverse backgrounds and experiences.
● Trauma-Informed approach.
● Creativity and flexibility.
● Resilience and thick skin.
The successful candidate:
● Believes fully in Advance’s vision.
● Is committed to professional development to improve self-awareness and skills.
● Is familiar with trauma informed care and empowerment models (preferred).
● Values DEI and advances equity throughout the organization.
● Is able to work independently with minimal supervision.