Social Services Specialist Ii - Father Engagement Specialist

Fairfax, Virginia
$62,932.27 - $104,886.91 Annually
Sep 19, 2023
Sep 30, 2023
Full Time
Job Announcement

This position includes a signing bonus of $2,500 (full-time) for new county hires.

The Division of Children, Youth & Families (CYF) of Department of Family Services (DFS) is seeking a Father engagement Specialist II. As an agency, DFS is committed to strengthening the well-being of its diverse community by protecting and improving the lives of all children, adults, and families through assistance, partnership, advocacy, outreach, and quality services. To learn more about DFS and its Mission, Vision, and Values, please click here.

As a member of the Family Engagement Program (FEP) and under general direction of the Father Engagement Supervisor, the Father Engagement Specialist III consults with CYF and systems of care agencies staff on effective strategies to engage uninvolved fathers. Supports advanced trauma-informed clinical interventions with fathers and their families. Collaborates on efforts to identify, locate, and engage fathers and paternal relatives. Serves as the lead facilitator of fatherhood parenting and mentoring groups. Helps train volunteer group facilitators and mentors.

Duties and responsibilities of the Father Engagement Specialist II include:
  • Provide bi-monthly (or as needed) home visits to fathers to support them with case management needs.
  • Facilitate weekly groups for fathers using 24/7 Dad curriculum and relationship-based support.
  • Link fathers to community resources, including but not limited to, shelter, domestic violence services, legal, childcare, food support programs, financial assistance, employment/training, health, and immigration support services.
  • Provide workshops in the community covering topics such as positive discipline, parenting style, children’s development, and others.
  • Work as part of a multi-disciplinary team of Family Support Specialists, social workers, marriage and family therapists and community partners.
  • Coordinate services with other providers who are involved with each family.
  • Maintain client files and timely program documentation.
  • • Attends group supervision, individual supervision, and regular program staff meetings.
  • Connect with other agency’s programs with Early childhood services to collaborate and strengthen father engagement services across the county
  • Integrates feedback to promote development of child welfare staff in developing capacity and competence in using the Safe & Connected™ model in everyday practice Assures timely and continuous delivery and quality of training to child welfare staff
  • Provides day-to-day coaching of practitioners and supervisors in their work with families and with each other
  • Collaborate with agencies, partners, outside vendors or consultants, and stakeholders outside of CYF
  • Participates in workgroups and committees that improve best practices and service delivery to children and families in Fairfax County
  • Prepares reports, data, and organizational documents
  • Performs other duties as assigned to ensure child safety and improve outcomes in families
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:
  • Ability to apply and model the practice of the Safe & Connected Model™
  • Knowledge of Father Engagement theory, 24/7 Dads Curriculum and strength-based approach
  • Ability to consider the work through an Equity Informed Lens
  • Ability to apply critical thinking skills
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills with a strong confidence level speaking to large or small groups is essential to the position
  • Ability to exercise discretion and ensure confidentiality
  • Knowledge of child protection laws, rules, and regulations
  • Knowledge of foster care and adoption laws, rules, and regulations
  • Ability to interview, assess needs, counsel, and refer clients to other resources as needed

Illustrative Duties

(The illustrative duties listed in this specification are representative of the class but are not an all-inclusive list. A complete list of position duties and unique physical requirements can be found in the position job description.)
Conducts comprehensive clinical assessments and prepares and implements service plans;
Works with clients to develop a plan of service to meet social, health, emotional and economic needs. With the client, formulates objectives and identifies actions to resolve the clients' problems;
Advocates for and assists families and individuals in obtaining services (e.g., mental health, intellectual disability, alcohol and drug, housing referrals, financial assistance for basic needs, home based services, training and medical services);
Works with the community to identify families, children and individuals needing social services and coordinates these services using a wrap-around approach;
Provides family counseling and conducts mediation services to families in conflict;
Performs emergency removal of children from their homes when required, places children in foster homes and residential programs, and coordinates services for them as needed;
Investigates complaints of alleged abuse or neglect, and in consultation with supervisor, makes assessment of risks posed to clients in accordance with state and local policies, and works to ensure risks are eliminated or minimized;
Provides crisis intervention on a timely basis to clients or families whose well being are seriously and imminently threatened, to include Adult Protective Services and Child Protective Services after-hours;
Represents the agency in court proceedings and prepares testimony and testifies in Juvenile, Circuit, Criminal, Civil and Federal Courts;
Communicates and works with colleagues, clients and the community in a manner that supports the agency and program goals and objectives;
Participates as a contributing member on interagency, multi-disciplinary teams, community groups and professional organizations;
Collaborates and contributes to child specific teams on non-agency cases as assigned to assist in identifying community resources and services for families;
Participates, collaborates and contributes to Comprehensive Services Act activities for families on caseload;
Uses automated technology and hard copy files to maintain and update case data, notes,
documents, records, contacts and summaries of information. Maintains case notes, documents and records, enters and updates case load data, contacts and summaries of information;
Prepares and provides reports on casework;
Performs or reviews initial assessment of client's presenting need and conducts additional assessment as necessary to develop a coordinated service plan that establishes goals, tasks, and time frames with appropriate county and community-based service providers;
Addresses, and if necessary diffuses, initial crisis situation with clients, assesses safety issues and refers clients to emergency services as needed (e.g., mental health services, child protective services, adult protective services, women's shelter, homeless shelter);
Demonstrates expertise in community service resources to identify, classify and describe services that address a broad array of client service needs-collaborates with service delivery professionals from all disciplines to identify service resource information requirements-translates those requirements into an automated catalog of resources necessary for client referrals and the development of client service plans;
Negotiates, facilitates, and coordinates the creative use of limited community-based service alternatives and assists staff from other county human service agencies in creative use of community resources;
Consults with community-based organizations (CBO) staff on resources and service strategies that support service area work with individuals and families.

Required Knowledge Skills and Abilities

(The knowledge, skills and abilities listed in this specification are representative of the class but are not an all-inclusive list.)
Knowledge of the principles and practices of social work;
Knowledge of current social service problems and methods/approaches to address issues;
Knowledge of regulations and guidelines relating to the assigned area of social service specialization;
Ability to analyze case information and to reach sound decisions on the basis of such information;
Ability to communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing;
Ability to use automated technology to establish and maintain case records;
Ability to maintain professional ethics and confidentiality of client information;
Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with a variety of individuals;
Ability to schedule and manage workload sufficiently to meet deadlines.

Employment Standards

Graduation from an accredited four-year college or university with a bachelor's degree, plus two years of professional social work experience. A master's degree in a related field may be substituted for one year of the required experience.

Valid driver's license.

The appointee to the position must satisfactorily complete a criminal background check, a driving record check, and a Child Protective Services check.

This position is considered essential personnel and will be required to report to work during times designated countywide as approved for unscheduled leave regardless of the emergency situation (i.e., weather, transportation, other disaster).

  • Master's degree in social work (MSW) or a related human services degree
  • Three or more years of professional-level social work experience, to include two or more years of experience in child welfare
  • Prior experience in child welfare. Child welfare is the continuum of services designed to ensure that children are safe and that families have the necessary support to care for their children successfully

Work requires performing tasks with risks of secondary traumatic stress (STS). Ability to navigate through and make decisions in stressful and crisis situations. Ability to communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing. Ability to use automated technology. Sufficiently mobile to attend/participate in person and virtual home visits, courts and community-based meetings to include case consultations, RED teams, ongoing professional development opportunities in various locations, and ability to attend trainings and conferences locally, state-wide and nationally as needed. All duties performed with or without reasonable accommodation.

Panel interview, may include practical exercise.

The population of Fairfax County is very diverse where 39.8% of residents speak a language other than English at home (Spanish, Asian/Pacific Islander, Indo-European, and others) and we encourage candidates bilingual in English and a foreign language to apply to this opportunity.

Fairfax County Government prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, age, marital status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetics, political affiliation, or military status in the recruitment, selection, and hiring of its workforce.

Reasonable accommodations are available to persons with disabilities during application and/or interview processes per the Americans with Disabilities Act. Contact 703-324-4900 for assistance. TTY 703-222-7314. EEO/AA/TTY.


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