Crown Point, IN Family Specialist

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  • Department

    Family Services

  • Reports to

    Regional Manager and Clinical Supervisor

  • Employment Status


Job Summary

The Family Specialist is knowledgeable and experienced in regards to the application of appropriate social work skills and principals. The Family Specialist demonstrates the ability to exercise independent judgment and function as a team member in the professional treatment effort as it applies to each child/family on the assigned caseload.  The Family Specialist must be equipped to identify the needs of the children and families in their care, and to address those needs through the application of various components of all of the White’s Family Services care models, including Foster Care, Independent Living, Home-Based Services, and Adoption Services.   This position is an integral part of the treatment team’s efforts toward permanency; reunification with the legal family, adoption, or independent living.  This position requires an over-arching understanding of the entire continuum of services available for families, children, and the referring agencies. The individual must demonstrate sensitivity to our service population’s cultural and socioeconomic characteristics and needs.


A Christian with strong convictions who is also in agreement with White’s mission statement, Statement of Faith, and Code of Conduct. A Bachelor’s degree in Social Work, Psychology, Counseling, Sociology, Human/Social Services, Human Development and Life Studies, Family and Consumer Sciences or Child Development and three years of experience in community-based support services or a Bachelor’s degree in any degree type with five years relevant experience in community-based support services.

Have a valid driver’s license with no restrictions that would limit the ability to perform job functions.

Basic Responsibilities

Case Management

Under the periodic guidance of the Clinical Supervisor, develop conceptualization for each assigned case (in conjunction with the treatment team)

Attend and represent White’s at review hearings as well as child and family team meetings; make objective recommendations to the court and the team

Develop an individualized treatment plan for each assigned child/family in consultation with placing agency worker, program manager, and clinical supervisor

Pursue case goals utilizing various resources:  community supports, resource family life, supplemental counseling, psychiatric services, therapeutic activities, etc.

Regularly evaluate child/family progress and periodically meet with treatment team to review cases

Advocate for child and family’s needs and best interests by assisting in the identification of service gaps and community resources to meet identified needs

Maintain appropriate and required documentation consistent with accreditation and Department of Child Services treatment standards:  Individual Treatment Plan, Monthly Progress Report, Closing Summary, case notes, outcome measures, etc.

Keep placing agency workers informed about family and child’s progress, major crises, etc.

Foster Families

Build and maintain positive, supportive, and encouraging working relationships with resource families

Direct resource families in their efforts to be therapeutic in their work with those placed in their home

Attend resource family trainings; co-facilitate training and/or activities for children

Foster Children and Independent Living Youth

Facilitate independent living youth in securing entitlements and other collateral resources

Prepare each foster child for the identified permanency goal in a developmentally appropriate manner in conjunction with other service providers including the referring agency staff and therapist when applicable

Enhance foster child functioning by providing basic counseling, psycho-education, skills training, etc.

Implement and maintain therapeutically sound treatment programming for youth in independent living program consistent with White’s mission and philosophy

Prepare independent living students for self-sufficiency by facilitating experiential and didactic exercises and activities

Families of Origin/Guardians/Adoptive Parents

Build working relationships with birth/adoptive parents with whom foster child is to be reunified by facilitating parenting time and regular communication (if this is the case plan)

Prepare birth/adoptive parents for reunification by evaluating the safety of living environments

Assess family dynamics and needs to facilitate case plan goal achievement as accessibility permits

Serve as a resource coordinator for families in mobilizing and securing resources for critical needs; this may involve transporting families to resources or bringing such to them

Provide mentoring and teaching resources: nurturing/parenting skills, problem-solving/conflict resolution skills, child development, and self-esteem concepts

Coordinate establishment of a family support team to meet with family regularly

Identify and engage informal supports to assist after White’s services are no longer active

Coordinate development and implementation of family goal plan; includes a safety plan for children and parents; includes objectives for growth in family’s assets; includes issues as well as basic needs

Formally assess families using the approved instruments within the first 30 days of admission

Complete assessments in conjunction with therapists to guide family preparation for adoption, when appropriate

Facilitate training in issues related to adoption, when appropriate

Agency Support and Enhancement

Construct a working relationship with placing agency workers of children and families with whom they work through regular and consistent communication regarding case plan progress

Be a positive liaison between White’s, placing agencies and other community stakeholders  by communicating White’s mission, vision, and values

Professional Development

Participate in Clinical Supervision regularly

Fulfill reading assignments to improve relevant skills and abilities

Attend workshops and other opportunities for professional growth

Participate in periodic field observation by the Clinical Supervisor or Designee

Analyze and assess performance feedback through the Coaching Review process


Perform other duties as assigned by the Regional Manager, Clinical Director, or VP and Executive Director of Family Services

Skills, Supervision,, Knowledge, and Ability

  • The Family Specialist must be an individual with a Christian and professional commitment to work with children and youth of all ages, their families, the referring agency, community professionals, and the White's Family Services’ treatment team

  • Must demonstrate initiative and the ability to complete work assignments with moderate to minimal direct supervision

  • Must be dependable, well-organized, and an effective time manager

  • Must clearly, concisely, and professionally communicate ideas through good verbal and writing skills

  • Must understand of basic counseling/helping skills

  • Must maintain professional boundaries and confidentiality

  • Must personably, genuinely, empathetically, and emotionally communicate and interact with foster children, resource families, birth families, other professionals, and placing agency workers

  • Must be a “team player” – this person needs to enjoy working closely with other staff members and to be flexible, adaptive, and positive in his/her actions

  • Must be a positive role model for the children and youth assigned

  • Must maintain appropriate hygiene and attire

  • Must be committed to the Mission, Core Values, and Vision of White's Residential and Family Services

Physical Demands of the Position

Must be able to drive long distances for foster home visitation, court hearings, visitation, etc.

Must be able to handle the challenge of prioritizing multiple roles and responsibilities, attend to crises and other unplanned events with minimal to moderate direct supervision, and meet regular deadlines for required documentation

Working Conditions

Office hours are 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday (part-time employees will work as needed)

Travel, supervised visitation, home visits, and other tasks will regularly extend beyond these office hours.

The Family Specialist will be expected to respond to child and family crises when available.  Their cell phone number will be given to staff and to resource families to use as needed. The Family Specialist is required to participate in an on-call rotation.


    Cover Letter


    Statement of Faith*

    I acknowledge that I’ve read and agree to
    the Statement of Faith for White's.

    Code of Conduct*

    I acknowledge that I’ve read and agree to
    the Code of Conduct for White's.

    statement of

    Hello prospective employee! White’s Residential and Family Services exists to offer hope and transformation through Christ to children and families. As members of a Christian organization, each employee must recognize that living a life in accordance with the standards presented in the Statement of Faith found below is necessary as it serves to unify us as a Community of Believers set out on the same path. Therefore, all individuals who are interested in applying to work at White’s must first agree with and abide by White’s Statement of Faith

    The Statement of Faith is as Follows…

    Remaining true to our Quaker heritage and Josiah White’s vision, White’s Residential and Family Services’ primary reason for existence is to offer hope and transformation to children and families through Christ. As such, we have firm beliefs about the Christian faith and how we must act in accordance with our beliefs.

    This statement of faith does not exhaust the extent of our beliefs. The Bible itself, as the inspired and infallible Word of God that speaks with final authority concerning truth, morality, and the proper conduct of mankind, is the sole and final source of all that we believe. White’s Residential & Family Services’ board of directors serves as White’s highest, human interpretive authority on the Bible’s meaning and application for the purposes of our agency’s faith and beliefs, practice, policy and discipline at work.

    We believe the Bible to be the inspired, the only infallible, authoritative Word of God (II Timothy 3:15).

    We believe that there is one God, eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit (John 10:30).

    We believe in the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ (John 10:33), in His virgin birth (Luke 1:35), in His sinless life (Hebrews 4:15), in His miracles (John 2:11), in His atoning death through His shed blood (Ephesians 1:7), in His bodily resurrection (John 11:25), in His ascension to the right hand of the Father (Mark 16:19), and in His personal return in power and glory (Revelation 19:11).

    We believe that for the salvation of lost and sinful man, regeneration by the Holy Spirit is absolutely essential (John 3:16-19).

    We believe in the present ministry of the Holy Spirit by whose indwelling the Christ-follower is enabled to live a Godly life (Romans 8:13-14).

    We believe in the resurrection of both the saved and the lost, that they that are saved unto the resurrection of life and they that are lost unto the resurrection of damnation (John 5:28-29).

    We believe in the spiritual unity of believers in our Lord Jesus (Galatians 3:26-28).

    We believe that children are a heritage from God and a blessing from His hand. We are therefore accountable to Him for raising, shaping and preparing them for a life of service to His Kingdom and to humanity. We believe that all human life is sacred and created by God in His image. Human life is of inestimable worth in all its dimensions, including pre-born babies, the aged, the physically or mentally challenged, and every other stage or condition from conception through natural death. We are therefore called to defend, protect, and value all human life (Ps 139).

    We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female, and that these two distinct, complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God (Genesis 1:27, Genesis 2:24).

    We believe that God created marriage to be exclusively the union of one man and one woman, and that intimate sexual activity is to occur exclusively within that union. We believe that the term “marriage” has only one meaning: the uniting of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture (Genesis 2:18-25).

    As Christians living out our faith, it is unsurprising that our beliefs influence our behavior, attitudes and lifestyle choices. As Christian professionals, we will not compromise our commitment to our professional code of ethics while providing superior care to our clients who possess differing values or beliefs.

    I affirm that I am a Christian, I have read and agree with White’s Residential and Family Services’ Statement of Faith, and I agree to make lifestyle choices that are consistent with White’s Residential and Family Services’ Statement of Faith. I understand that my employment at White’s is contingent upon me living a lifestyle that is consistent with this Statement of Faith.

    white’s residential & family services
    Employee Code of Conduct

    As a distinctly Christian ministry, for over 165 years our mission has been to enrich the lives of children and families through emotional healing, personal development and spiritual growth. We are best able to achieve this through Christian staff who constantly strive to demonstrate the love of Christ through their actions, words and overall lifestyle.

    It then follows that all employees who serve as members of White’s community agree to uphold certain foundational standards through their behaviors, attitudes and lifestyle choices at work and in their personal lives. Living in accordance with these standards shall serve to unify us as a “community of believers.” As a member of White’s “community,” we believe employees should strive to live in harmony with the following foundational standards as evidence of their life committed to growth in Christ and sound judgment based on Christian principles:

    We believe as followers of Jesus Christ, we are responsible for our faith journey and strive to pursue a life of service to Jesus Christ in our personal life and while at work. We believe the investment in our spiritual life is critical and we strive to make time regularly for prayer and communion with God. Opportunities for Christian fellowship, worship, learning, and celebration while at work are opportunities not to be overlooked, but to be sought out as ways in which we can demonstrate our commitment to growing in our faith as part of the White’s Community.

    We believe every human life is of inestimable worth and significance in all its dimensions. Therefore, we must seek ways to act out of love and respect for each other, encouraging and building up one another, not causing one another to stumble. We believe that to achieve this, employees must practice a lifestyle that demonstrates purity to those around them (Romans 13-14 & I Corinthians 10:31-11:1).

    We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect,and dignity (Mark 12:28-31; Luke 6:31). Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward anyindividual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture.

    We believe there is great power in the spoken word and therefore all lying, profanity, gossip, obscenity, and other negative uses of language diminishes our work with the children, families and our coworkers.

    We believe employees must demonstrate a teachable spirit, an ability to share love for others, a willingness to live contentedly under authority, and a commitment to follow the Matthew 18 principal when an issue arises with fellow employees or management.

    We believe in the power of our example and that our minds and bodies should be used in God-honoring ways, living our lives as Christian role models and conducting ourselves in a way that will not raise questions regarding our Christian testimonies. Because our example is powerful and because most of our service population is impacted by some form of substance abuse, we especially recognize the dangers and negative implications of drug, alcohol and tobacco abuse among staff. Therefore, we seek to minimize or refrain from the use of alcohol and tobacco and we agree to completely abstain from the illicit or non-medical use of drugs, narcotics and other harmful substances. When an employee is representing White’s or is in the course of representing White’s business, he or she is expected to refrain from the use of alcohol and tobacco.

    We believe our life serves as a Christian Witness to the children and families we serve and our commitment to expressing Christian values is critical even when making entertainment and recreational choices outside of work. Therefore, we actively avoid forms of leisure, entertainment and recreation that are incompatible with holy living and seek activities that are consistent with our pursuit of Christ- like living.

    We believe that God wonderfully and immutably creates each person as male or female. These two distinct, complementary genders together reflect the image and nature of God (Genesis 1:26-27). We believe that the term “marriage” has only one meaning: the uniting of one man and one woman in a single, exclusive union, as delineated in Scripture (Genesis 2:18-25). We believe that God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a man and a woman who are married to each other (1Corinthians 6:18; 7:2-5; Hebrew 13:4).

    We further believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman. We believe that any form of sexual immorality (including adultery, fornication, homosexual behavior, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, and use of pornography) is sinful (Matt 15:18-20; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10) and that activities that give the appearance of sexual immorality should be avoided by staff.

    We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ (Acts 3:19-21; Romans 10:9-10; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11).

    We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of White’s Residential & Family Services as the local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to the White’s Residential & Family Services clients, fellow staff members and the community, it is imperative that all persons employed by White’s Residential & Family Services in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, agree to and abide by this Statement (Mathew 5:16; Philippians 2:14-16; I Thessalonians 5:22).

    I affirm that I am a Christian, I have read and agree with White’s Residential and Family Services’ Code of Conduct, and I agree to make lifestyle choices that are consistent with White’s Residential and Family Services’ Code of Conduct. I understand that my employment at White’s is contingent upon me living a lifestyle that is consistent with this Code of Conduct.

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