Child and Family Resilience Specialist

Position Title: Child and Family Resilience Specialist

Reports To: Family Engagement Manager

Date Created: July 2020

Summary: The Child and Family Resilience Specialist will focus on empowering and building a safe, trusting, and healing environment for enrolled Head Start parents/caregivers, with the purpose of promoting the social and emotional well-being and resilience of vulnerable Head Start children and their families through a journey of discovery, learning, and reflection.

The Child and Family Resilience Specialist (CFRS), through the use of research-based prevention curriculum and tools, will focus on helping Head Start preschool parents to: nurture children’s social and emotional competencies including attachment/relationships, self-regulation, and initiative; strengthen their own social and emotional competencies; and learn parenting practices that promote children’s overall safety and well-being.

The CFRS will also play an integral role in supporting safe, trusting, trauma-sensitive communication and collaboration among parents and site education and mental health teams with regards to protective factors, risks, and social-emotional support strategies and goals both at home and in the classroom/at school.

Qualifications/Required Skills:

· Bachelor’s degree in social work, psychology, family studies, or related field (Master’s degree, MSW or MFT preferred), completion of Family Services Credential within 18 mo of hire and the UW-Madison Infant, Early Childhood, and Family Mental Health, Capstone Certificate, within 3 years of hire

· Experience empowering and building safe, trusting, and healing relationships with parents living in poverty and from diverse backgrounds

· Knowledge of trauma, effects and manifestations of trauma in adults and children, and trauma sensitive approaches to working with adults and children

· Knowledge of ACEs, resilience, and protective factors

· Experience working with Head Start and knowledge of Head Start Program Performance Standards preferred

· Knowledge of early childhood development, particularly preschool 3-5 age group

· Excellent communication skills, both verbal and written

· Have a valid Wisconsin Driver’s License, motor vehicle and adequate liability insurance as required by agency policy and state liability regulations

· Other duties as assigned

NOTE: Employment with Reach Dane Reach Green is contingent upon successful completion of the Caregiver Background Check prior to employment and a physical examination including TB test verifying employee is free of communicable diseases and physical ability to perform job responsibilities.

Physical Demands: (Sedentary) Primarily sedentary work; exerting up to 10 lbs. of force occasionally, or a negligible amount frequently;

Physical Activity: (Movement) Primary working position is sitting with occasional walking/transporting; other activities include reaching, carrying, lifting, pushing, fingering (picking, pinching, etc.);, grasping, (Auditory) Talking-speaking clearly, hearing-conversation level, and (Vision) seeing-near; ability to respond to an emergency or a crisis situation

Work Environment: Mainly office setting but must have the ability to operate a motor vehicle and travel to various sites for meetings

Personal / Physiological: Frequent internal and external interaction, making judgment calls, counseling others, frequent changes in volume of work. Interaction with people; working around people (work area shared); different duties with occasional changes; frequent changes in volume of work (varies throughout month and quarter); intra-organizational communication

Key Performance Factors for the Child and Family Resilience Specialist Position:

Emotional Intelligence Capacities

· Initiative- ability to use independent thought and action to meet needs; commitment, drive, optimism, innovation, acts as leader and change agent in inspiring and guiding others

· Attachment/Relationships/Social Skills- ability to promote and maintain mutual, positive connections with parents, children, and staff; strengths-based, trauma-informed, perspective taking

· Self-Regulation- ability to experience a range of feelings and emotions and express them in healthy, appropriate ways; awareness of self, preferences, resources

· Reflective Capacity- ability and desire to step back and process one’s internal state and responses to others with a supportive person

· Empathy- awareness of others’ feelings, needs, and concerns; service orientation that anticipates, recognizes, and strives to meet individual’s needs

Role in Home with Parent/Caregiver

· Build supportive, trusting relationship/partnership with enrolled parents through evidence-based, trauma-informed home visiting practices

· Employ core conditions of therapeutic relationship building of empathy, genuineness, unconditional positive regard

· Complete family enrollments as needed into program, utilize as time to join/begin building relationship/gather information

· Work in collaboration with education and mental health teams to support families in their efforts to enhance their children’s social and emotional well-being and prevent or reduce challenging behaviors through research-based prevention initiatives such as everyday routines, activities, and interactions

· Introduce and implement the Devereux Center for Resilient Children (DCRC) Your Journey Together, Building the Resilience of Children and Families Curriculum with select families

· Assess family need for and interest in engagement with Your Journey Together (YJT) curriculum based on collaboration and communication with Parent, Lead Teacher, and Social Emotional Specialist/Mental Health Consultant early in program year

· Offering of Your Journey Together (YJT) curriculum with engaged families includes, weekly 45 min-1 hr home visits with parent/caregiver introducing modules and stepping stones and supporting understanding, reflection, and activity engagement in Resilience, Strengthening Caregiving Practices that Promote Resilience, Strengthening Children’s Protective Factors, and Promoting Resilient Adult Caregivers

· As part of specialist role in YJT curriculum, support parent/caregiver in engagement with and completion of three below tools assessing social and emotional wellbeing of parents and children,

1. Devereux CAREgiving checklist, parents reflect/identify strengths and needs of caregiving practices

2. Devereux Early Childhood Assessment for Preschoolers (DECA), parents reflect upon and assess child’s protective factors; and/or Devereux Child Resilience-Building Plan

3. Devereux Adult Resiliency Survey (DARS), parents reflect upon their personal strengths

· Support connection of YJT curriculum reflections and activities at home with social-emotional support and goals at school through strengths-based, safe relationship building between parent, resilience specialist, social-emotional specialist, mental health consultant, and lead teacher

· Cultural, race, equity, and linguistic sensitivity, inquiry, and responsiveness

· Complete family assessment tool (FOSPI) twice/annually- utilizing tool as means to further build relationship with parent and explore vulnerable topics together

· Provide practical assistance to parents/families such as basic needs/resources

· For families not engaged in YJT curriculum, engage in family partnership process- working with family to set parent/child/family goals and address barriers/support steps to achieving goals through quarterly home visits

· Through home visits and other communication/connection offer relational and emotional support to parents through reflective space, modeling healthy/therapeutic relationships, and supporting parent/child relationships

Role Among Site/Dept Teams

· Engage in thoughtful, caring, family and child focused, communicative relationships with larger family services team, education, mental health, and other community-based supports

· Support parent empowerment, safety, and trust in communication with site education and mental health teams around reflections from home visits pertaining to child and adult resilience, caregiving practices, and child’s protective factors

· Additionally support site teams in trauma-sensitive, safe, trusting, and healing language, environments, and approaches with parents/caregivers

· Work as team with parent, lead teacher, social emotional specialist, and/or mental health consultant to align/connect specific caregiving strategies and goals developed at home based on child and family protective factors and risks, with social-emotional support strategies and goals utilized in the classroom/at school

o Specific attention given to

§ Protective factors within child’s Environment, Family, Self

§ Within-child protective factors of Attachment and Relationships, Initiative, Self-Regulation

o Frequent input on strengths and areas for growth from parent and lead teacher

· Engage in regular, supportive reflective supervision with supervisor

· Collaborate, consult, and reflect with other CFRSs through monthly small group mentoring

· Support Socializations (Family Fun Events) both planning and leading event as possible/appropriate with classroom team

· Child Plus database family services documentation- home visits, parent contacts, socializations, family goals, outcomes, PIR etc

· Active role in mentoring newly hired FOWs, supporting their growth building safe, supportive, trauma-informed relationships with parents and site teams

· Support 4k registrations/Kindergarten transitions as needed

Role in Agency

· Leader in knowledge of building resilience in children and families

· Support PFCE practices globally

· Steward of TI practices

· Leadership in Parent Engagement/Staff PD Opportunities

Agency Wide Performance Factors:

Communication (Oral and Written)

§ Relays information to supervisors, peers, employees, volunteers, collaborative partners, parents and community in a clear, timely, concise, accurate, thorough, and respectful manner both verbally and in written form

§ Demonstrates effective listening skills and makes productive use of the information

§ Communicates openly

§ Participates actively in meetings; makes meaningful contributions

Working Collaboratively

§ Supports agency goals, initiative, mission, values and vision

§ Supports Trauma-Informed Care (TIC) Values: Safety, Trustworthiness, Choice, Collaboration; and Empowerment

§ Shares appropriate information with team members and administration

Professional Behavior/Judgment/Initiative/Confidentiality

§ Maintains a positive and professional attitude and approachable style while interacting with others. Polite, courteous, well-spoken when representing agency on and off the work site. Follows dress requirements for work

§ Anticipates potential problems and takes preventative measures before they occur and consistently applies sound problem-solving skills

§ Seeks out new assignments, suggests usable ideas, methods, techniques, and works effectively without supervision

§ Maintains confidentiality of all agency information, including information relative to children, families, and staff

Work Quality/Productivity/Results

§ Results oriented: Effectively sets goals and achieves high performance by using required levels of knowledge and skill for successful performance outcomes

§ Demonstrates productive and accurate work while meeting deadlines and assures the same of direct reports

§ Uses time management skills effectively

§ Demonstrates problem solving ability resulting in positive suggestions for improvement

Interactions with others/Teamwork

§ Sets a positive example for the team; motivates others; creates enthusiasm for team effort

§ Promotes, models and maintains respectful working relationships with supervisor, team, other staff, parents and community

§ Promotes and provides leadership toward a quality, healthy, creative, nurturing environment for children, families and staff that models dignity and respect

§ Models, promotes and exhibits a positive and cooperative attitude; sets a model for teamwork that encourages common goals

§ Listens reflectively and accepts suggestions willingly

§ Supports for success and encourages the efforts and achievement of others

§ Demonstrates shared responsibility for agency and departmental issues – jumps in and helps out as needed

§ Promotes, models and maintains an approachable manner that encourages interactions with others

§ Effectively builds the team, promoting strong working relationships

§ Focuses on the greater good of the organization

§ Collaborates effectively with others

§ Exhibits an ability to adapt to change


§ Completes Job Description duties and understands the expected results to be achieved

§ Meets commitments, gives and seeks feedback, takes responsibility for actions

§ Completes and maintains required recordkeeping on a timely basis

§ Arrives and is ready for work and appointments on time

§ Routinely checks agency e-mails, voicemail and written correspondence and responds in an appropriate and timely manner

§ Takes responsibility for professional growth, development, and continued education

§ Complies with agency policies, procedures, and other local, state, and national requirements

§ Assures safety and security practices and procedures are followed.

Child and Family Resilience Specialist (CFRS) Job Description July 2020