Worksite information during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Currently, our offices are closed, except for a few key services that we provide, and our staff are largely working from home. Ideally, this candidate will have the ability to be in the office at either location around 1-2 days per week once COVID restrictions are over. However, we are open to exploring having this position be fully remote post-COVID and not require living near one of our offices. We are dedicated to maintaining a safe work environment with robust pandemic protocols, PPE supplies and ample space for our staff to work safely alone, when in-office work occurs.
Amara is committed to positive long-term outcomes for children and families. We promote healing, racial and LGBTQ+ equity, and transformation of our child welfare system into a family well-being system by:
- Offering programs and services to families engaged with foster care and adoption
- Offering programs and services to adoptees and families, post-adoption
- Driving systemic change
We are seeking a new position to become an integral and valued part of our clinical team working to achieve Amara’s vision. Funded by a grant from the Alliance CaRES Program & DCYF, this position will provide support to kinship caregivers in Washington State who are currently, or about to be placed, with related youth in foster care. This position will also manage support groups for kinship caregivers (supervising support group facilitators, assisting with logistics and scheduling, promotion of groups, and assisting with training topic ideas). This position is grant funded through June 2022. Future employment is dependent on grant renewal.
Amara believes that a diverse workforce and inclusive workplace culture enhances our ability to fulfill our mission. We strive for equity and justice in the way people are treated and the opportunities they have to succeed by working to address racism, prejudice, unequal treatment and other barriers to inclusion. We strongly encourage candidates from diverse backgrounds (including communities of color, the LGBT community, veterans, and people with disabilities) to apply and join us in our work.
The Kinship Retention Support Specialist reports to the Associate Director of Kinship and Community Services and will work closely with the other Retention Support Specialists and support group facilitators. This position will be responsible for providing a wide range of services on behalf of kinship caregivers and the youth in their home, including:
- Provide timely contact and support to kinship caregivers.
- Provide licensing support to kinship families who are interested in pursuing licensure.
- Provide family support and education around available resources that support kinship caregivers.
- Maintain appropriate records of service provision.
- Build relationship with multiple professionals in the child welfare and local government arena.
- Manage six kinship caregiver support group programs across the state.
- Meeting requirements for timely, accurate, and thorough documentation for case files
- Attending and participating in Amara and CaRES related meetings and trainings as required.
- Flexing hours to accommodate family needs on an occasional and ongoing basis.
- Bachelor’s Degree in human services or related field preferred and two years of experience working directly with children and families, Or,
- AA Degree in Human Services or a related field (or 2 years of completed coursework toward a bachelor’s degree) and three years of experience working with children and families. Or,
- High School Diploma or GED and five years of experience working with children and families.
- A practicum may be considered as a substitute for one year of paid experience.
- Knowledge of child development and family systems.
- Knowledge of child welfare, foster care, and the needs of kinship caregivers
- Knowledge about the foster care licensing requirements in Washington state.
- Outstanding written and oral communication skills.
- Ability to demonstrate initiative, discretion, maturity, flexibility, and independent judgment.
- Ability to work with individuals across the spectrum of age, religion, race, culture, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, and gender expressions & identities.
- Highly organized and detail oriented.
- Ability to work collaboratively with an outstanding professional team.
- Ability to effectively communicate (verbal and written) with Spanish-speaking families preferred.
- Lived experience as a former youth in foster care/kinship care, current or former kinship caregiver, or related personal experiences strongly preferred.
Salary and Benefits
$19-$22 per hour, DOE. Generous personal leave and benefits package, including paid time off, paid sabbatical, health, vision and dental insurance, 401k with a company match, life and disability insurance.
Criminal Background Check
Because this position has access to confidential client, employee, or financial information OR direct interaction with children any final candidate hired into this position must successfully pass a criminal background check performed by the State of Washington. Any job offer is contingent on successfully passing this background check. A list of disqualifying convictions for this position is available here.
To express your interest in this position, please submit your resume and a one-page cover letter indicating why this position is the right opportunity for you here. Resumes submitted without a cover letter will not be considered. Applications received before 6/14/2021 will have priority in being reviewed, but this position will remain open until filled.