Substance Abuse Counsellor OMHS

Substance Abuse Counsellor OMHS

Job Summary:
Nodin Mental Health Services (MHS) is the mental health department of Sioux Lookout First Nations Health Authority. It is a resource available to First Nation children, youth, adults and families from 33 remote communities served by SLFNHA. Nodin MHS has several services: counsellors travelling to First Nation communities, a crisis response program, community-based counsellors, traditional healing, etc., and an outpatient mental health service based in Sioux Lookout.

The Outpatient Mental Health Service (OMHS) provides intensive brief counselling, crisis intervention and safety planning with individuals demonstrating very “high risk” behaviours, serious emotional/behavioural disorders, and trauma symptoms that cannot be responded to at the community level. Individuals meeting criteria travel from communities for a short stay in Sioux Lookout to receive this support.

The Substance Abuse Counsellor is one team member of the Outpatient Mental Health Service. He/she provides education, individual counselling and group work with a concentration on substance abuse/addiction. The intent of this position is to help clients recognize the high risk nature of substance abuse, learn healthier coping strategies, and manage feelings/symptoms of trauma more effectively. This work is only brief to help stabilize. For those requiring more intensive substance abuse and addiction services, referrals are made.

Salary Range $71,442 to 91,949 per annum

Who can apply: Persons of First Nations ancestry will be given preference (s.16 (1)CHRA)

Applicants must possess:

  • Addiction Counselling Diploma or equivalent education
  • Must have course work in addictions
  • Minimum 1-2 years of experience working with substance abuse and mental health issues
  • Experience with individuals with concurrent disorders
  • A related university degree is an asset
  • Registration with recognized professional body preferred or willingness to obtain
  • Professional integrity and the ability to maintain confidentiality is essential
  • Must support and adhere to organizational policies, procedures, philosophy and mission
  • Must follow standard clinical operating procedures
  • Group facilitation experience and skills
  • Certification in Applied Suicide Intervention Skills is an asset
  • Experience providing services in a mental health trauma informed care environment
  • Practice from a harm reduction philosophy
  • Must be knowledgeable and follow duty to report requirements
  • Must have working knowledge assessing high risk clients and responding appropriately
  • Completion of courses specific to cultural competency, trauma, suicide intervention, family violence is an asset
  • Self-starter, comfortable in a multi-tasking environment, calm under pressure, diplomatic
  • Problem solving capability and ability to work under minimal supervision
  • Can function effectively in a fast-paced and ever-changing mental health environment
  • Must have excellent time management skills to effectively maintain a busy schedule
  • Positive attitude with a team-player approach to ensuring clients receive quality care
  • Strong facilitation skills, understanding of crisis intervention and trauma informed care preferred
  • Proficient in typing and competent in the use of computers
  • Must complete all client documentation requirements
  • Written accuracy and strong attention to detail is required
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Knowledge of the people, culture and mental health priorities of First Nations communities in the Sioux Lookout region
  • Ability to communicate in one or more of the First Nations dialects of the Sioux Lookout region will be an asset
  • Extensive knowledge of community resources or a willingness to learn

Roles and Responsibilities:

  • Assess the level, pattern, and dynamics of alcohol /drug use by an individual, as well as the overall functioning including social systems, general health, and psycho/social status
  • Help clients identify their stage of change and goals for brief service
  • Provide counselling using a harm-reduction approach to help clients begin to examine their substance abuse
  • Psycho-education (e.g. relation between substance abuse and trauma, effects of alcohol/drugs, regulation of emotions without reliance on substances, management of triggers)
  • Help clients develop life skills, relapse prevention/coping strategies, community survival skills, and how to engage in acceptable recreational and social activities in the community
  • Ongoing assessment of risk and safety planning
  • Develop and facilitate addiction-related group counselling or psychoeducational groups
  • Maintain working knowledge of other alcohol and drug treatment agencies and programs
  • Assist with completion of applications and assessment tools required by in-patient programs
  • Link to community based resources who can take over the facilitation of in-patient treatment referrals once a client returns home and/or can provide aftercare counselling
  • Comprehensive and collaborative discharge planning
  • Maintain timely, detailed and accurate records in electronic client management system
  • Perform other related duties as required

Closing Date: Open to Filled

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Sioux Lookout First Nations Health Authority focuses on hiring qualified First Nation employees where possible. Self-identification is voluntary, the information is used to assist SLFNHA in hiring SLFNHA community members where possible and to help support candidates applying for roles.
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