Under the direction of the Family and Health Coordinator, the Family and Health Advocate provides direct services to the families at assigned sites. The Family and Health Advocate works collaboratively with sites and the Head Start/Early Head Start team to deliver services that fulfill Head Start and Early Head Start requirements in the areas of: ERSEA (Eligibility, Recruitment, Selections, Enrollment, and Attendance), PFCE (Parent, Family and Community Engagement), Health and Nutrition, Inclusion, and Social Emotional.
Develop and maintain professional relationships with administrative and teaching staff at assigned sites; provide support and monitoring to assist sites in meeting the Head Start performance standards.
Develop and maintain a regular schedule of site visits to ensure implementation of Head Start/Early Head Start services and ongoing contact with families. Schedule will include periodic after-hours events, such as parent workshops, and flexibility (early morning and evening appointments/meetings as needed) to meet the schedules of families.
Build trusting relationships with families and provide ongoing support through: significant monthly contact with each family; family needs assessment and goal-setting; referrals and services, follow-up, and advocacy to meet family needs and interests; implementation of Baby TALK parent engagement curriculum.
Maintain full enrollment of Head Start/Early Head Start children at assigned sites through ongoing recruitment, eligibility determination, and development of a waiting list; fill vacancies within 30 days.
Implement attendance follow-up procedures, including home visits as needed, to support regular attendance.
Work with site staff to ensure that enrolled children remain up-to-date on well-child visits, physicals, immunizations, EPSDT-required screenings, vision and hearing, and dental exams; follow up with families and doctor’s offices as needed.
Collaborate with teachers and instructional coaches to assist families to understand their child’s development through providing resources and referrals.
Collaborate with teachers to communicate with the parent when there are developmental, social emotional, or behavioral concerns for which a referral is recommended.
Schedule SRT (Screening Review Team) and Social Emotional Review Team meetings with the parent and team within the required timeframe and facilitate the meetings.
Accompany and support families at IEP/IFSP meetings and through the process of enrolling their child in services; support parents in advocating for their goals for their child.
Work with staff and Social Emotional Specialists/Consultants to identify specific children/classrooms needing social emotional services; participate in planning and feedback meetings; follow up with families.
Work with sites to encourage parent participation in site-level Parent Committees and agency-wide Parent Policy Committee (PPC) (Chicago) or Policy Council (PC) (Suburban).
Coordinate parent elections for Parent Committee officers and PPC/PC Representatives.
With Parent Committees and sites, plan annual Parent Involvement Activity Calendar and Budget, including: annual Parent Orientation; Parent Committee meetings; parent workshops; and parent-child activities. Coordinate and be present for these activities, and compile documentation into PFCE binder.
Maintain complete and accurate records in the COPA system, including, but not limited to: demographic information, enrollment dates, family needs assessments, family goals, referrals, and services, case notes, and follow-up.
Maintain complete and accurate child/family binders.
Utilizing COPA, Tableau, and Smartsheets, implement tracking to ensure required timelines are met.
Maintain complete and updated Community Resource Board at sites.
Submit all required paperwork accurately and in a timely manner and attend all required meetings.
Complete and submit site verification forms and maintain outlook calendar.
Participate in Enrollment/Recruitment Campaign, annual self-assessment, community assessment, and PIR.
Contribute to achievement of Program Goals, School Readiness goals, and PFCE goals.
All other duties as assigned.
If hired after 11/7/16: Bachelor’s degree or higher in social work, human services, family services, counseling, or a related field; or, bachelor’s degree in another field with the following to be earned within 18 months of hire: Illinois Gateways to Opportunity Family Specialist credential.
Bilingual, both oral and written ability in English/Spanish preferred.
Head Start Performance Standard.
Valid driver’s license.
Able to work well with all levels of the organization, partner sites, other agencies and funding source personnel.
Demonstrates the ability to conceptualize and articulate program outcomes.
Able to manage multiple projects.
Well organized, highly detail oriented and accuracy driven.
Excellent interpersonal, organizational and supervisory skills.
Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
ADA: Easterseals will make reasonable accommodations in compliance with the Americans with Disability Act of 1990. Unless exempted by the Americans with Disabilities Act, all persons hired for this position are required to possess the ability to perform the physical tasks necessary to treat clients, i.e., bending, floor-sitting, etc., as well as to have the ability to lift up to 50 pounds frequently.
Easterseals changes the way the world defines and views disabilities by making positive, profound differences in peoples' lives every day. If you are passionate about what you do, then we'd love to hear from you. Our talented, diverse and agile workforce is the cornerstone of what we do day-in and day-out, which is why we hire the best in the market. We hope you will be one of them.