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Residential Counselor (full-time)

Children's Home & Aid invites you to join our team of mission-driven staff who share a common vision: an equitable world where all children and families thrive in strong communities. As a leading child and family service agency with more than 20 locations across Illinois, our mission is to advance the well-being of children by investing in families to disrupt the systemic and multi-generational cycle of racial, social and economic inequality.

Our full-time staff receive competitive salaries and a generous benefits package, including a paid leave accrual rate that starts at two weeks annually and grows to more than five weeks of paid time off each year. We hold ourselves and each other accountable for fostering an inclusive work culture where we can be our authentic selves, where we create and have equitable opportunities, and where our voices are supported and encouraged.

The Residential Counselor is a critical member of the Rice Child & Family team, providing strength-based, trauma-informed support, supervision, and treatment to youth, ages 6-14, who are in the care of the state and experiencing emotional and behavioral challenges. As a Residential Counselor, you will work with your team to plan and facilitate individual and group activities to improve emotional regulation, conflict management, and well-being of youth. All Residential Counselors are provided thorough training on the Rice treatment model and are also trained in the evidence-based approaches of Therapeutic Crisis Intervention (TCI) and Collaborative Problem Solving (CPS).

Staff are be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and to submit proof of their vaccination status before their start date unless they have an agency approved medical or religious exemption. Staff with an exemption will need to provide proof of weekly testing. For more information about our COVID-19 safety practices, please click here.

What you'll do:

  • Plan and facilitate individual and group activities for assigned youth that focus on life skills and emotional regulation, and promote general well-being.
  • Continually seek opportunities to engage with youth, build connections, and develop trust.
  • Follow the Rice treatment model to support youth in reaching individual goals; model healthy boundaries and follow Rice guidelines for behavior management.
  • Complete documentation of observed behaviors and unusual incidents within required timeframes, generally before leaving a shift.
  • Participate as an active member of the treatment team, gaining an understanding of the individual needs of each youth and making treatment recommendations based on your observations and experiences.
  • Assist with transportation of youth and their families to appointments, visits, and activities, using an agency vehicle.
  • Work closely with nursing staff to ensure appropriate medication administration and to address health needs of assigned youth.

Who you are:

  • Must be MHP qualified, which requires either a Bachelor's Degree in a Human Services field (preferred), OR
    a degree in another field with at least two years' relevant experience, OR
    a high school diploma/equivalent with at least five years' relevant experience
  • You are at least 21 years of age.
  • You have a valid driver's license.
  • You have previous experience working with youth (highly desirable).
  • You recognize that youth in care have experienced trauma that must be understood and addressed to support healing and thriving.
  • You are relentlessly driven to align with youth, looking beyond off-putting surface behaviors to effectively support them in meeting their needs in healthy ways.
  • You are patient, understanding, and empathic, and you easily build relationships built on respect, trust and positive regard.
  • You have a clear and strength-based communication style, both verbally and in your written communication.

The details:

  • Location: work is completed at the Rice Child & Family Center, located at 1101 Washington in Evanston, IL.
  • Schedule: Full-time, hourly, with holiday pay and opportunities for overtime; available shifts include:
    • AM Shift: 7am-3:30pm, 5 days a week (includes weekends)
    • PM Shift: 3pm-11:30pm, 5 days a week (includes weekends)
  • Salary: Range starts at $17.30/hr ($36,000 annualized); offers are commensurate with experience
  • Noncash benefits: Medical/dental/vision insurance, paid time off plus 11 paid holidays, supplemental insurance options, 401(k) with match (more benefits details here)

Where you work matters.

You're considering a new position, so no one knows better than you that where you work matters. We believe that by building diverse teams of passionate advocates for youth and families, we can continue to show up for Illinois families, putting those families at the center of every decision, and strengthening the communities where we all work, play, and live together. (More about who we are here.)

We invite you to become an active member of a team that supports, inspires, and challenges each other, and grow your career in an organization that celebrates emerging leaders and provides development and training opportunities aligned with your individual goals and aspirations. If you are looking for an opportunity to do meaningful work, including raising your voice to disrupt the status quo, we encourage you to apply today.

Review our agency's blueprint for impact:
Salary Range
$20,000.00 - 31,000.00
per Year
Salary range estimated by
Evanston, IL 60201, US