Support Practitioner – Fixed Term Leeds Street

Closing date: August 12th, 2022

Job Title:

Support Practitioner

Responsible to:

Service Manager

Responsible for:

Supervision of staff agreed with the Service Manager and the post holder may also carry a small caseload of residents

Hours of Work:

37.5 hours per week, Interviews to be held Thursday 18th August

Fixed term position until 31st March 2023


YMCA Together – Leeds Street

Salary and benefits:

£25,555  per annum

  • 33 days annual leave including holidays
  • Paid Medicash support
  • Birthday bonus
  • Charity day of your choice
  • Well-being Hours
  • Cycle To Work Scheme
  • Refer a Friend Scheme
  • Christmas Voucher
  • Company Pension Scheme 4%
  • Funded Training Opportunities

YMCA Together is a registered charity and company Limited by Guarantee. We were founded in 1846 and so we build on a long history of providing a place for people experiencing challenging times in their lives.

YMCA Together is a truly value driven organisation.

Our vision is that everyone should feel safe, understood, empowered and positive for their future. We meet our vision by working within our values of Strength, Humility, Respect, Empathy and Kindness. These SHREK values run through all that we do from recruitment to how we work alongside people in our services to our partnership approach with other providers.

Our clear vision and values come together to help us in our mission to inspire and support people to change their lives by instilling hope, valuing the person and maximising potential.

Job Purpose

To assist in the provision of effective, high quality support services to vulnerable, homeless individuals who have complex needs such as offending behaviour, substance misuse problems, mental health issues and who are vulnerable to rough sleeping with the aim of promoting independent living.

To work closely as part of a team with the Director of Homeless Services and OLT in the development of operational planning and service delivery to the highest standards.

Hours of work

The hostel will be staffed 24/7 and the post holder will be working a rota of early, late and late late shifts over 7 days including weekends and bank holidays.

Duties and responsibilities

The specific areas of responsibility are set out below. These are subject to regular review in order to meet the changing needs of the organisation and the environment in which it operates.

Specific Duties

  • Conduct Mainstay assessments with homeless individuals presenting at the service
  • Carry out new resident welcomes, inducting residents into the service including registering with doctors’ etc
  • Ensure that residents have a full understanding of their rights and responsibilities during their stay at the YMCA
  • Support residents to achieve their goals and targets as defined/ agreed within their support plans and support contracts
  • Manage, update and communicate resident risk assessments in line with YMCA Together policy and procedure
  • Ensure residents shape their own support and take part in activities
  • Hold planned key-work sessions each week with residents using a person-centred flexible approach
  • Offer a creative but assertive approach in order to seek to re-engage rather than taking the route of punitive action that may lead to disengagement and eviction, and the ability to manage specific incidents of violence or aggressive behaviour with the use of short-term exclusions
  • Assess support needs via Outcomes Star assessments, ITEP mapping and plan support around individual need. Regularly review and develop mutually agreed support plans with residents and any other professional involved in the support of those individuals e.g., Social Workers, CPNs, Probation Officers
  • Hold 3-way meetings and coordinating the support of residents with other professionals
  • Up to date records must be kept on both support planning systems like MainStay and DAVE and in any resident’s files.
  • Conduct monthly/quarterly risk assessments of residents keeping all relevant parties informed of updates/changes
  • Conduct regular room checks and support residents in the management of their room and relationships with others and to report any health and safety issues to the Housing Manager
  • Participate in the planning and delivery of group work and activities e.g., Independent Living Skills. Support claims on behalf of residents for housing and other welfare benefits
  • Provide information and advice to the people we support in accordance with their support plans
  • Motivate and challenge the people we support so they realise their goals
  • Assist with securing move-on to appropriate accommodation
  • Liaise between the people we support and external agencies regarding the provision of specialised support when appropriate
  • Encourage involvement and participation among the people we support in the running and shaping of the service provided by planning and attending regular resident meetings
  • Deal promptly with all complaints and protection from abuse disclosures
  • Provide clear, accurate and good quality information in respect of all residents in line with agreed procedures ensuring that appropriate information is shared with the line managers
  • Demonstrate creativity in overcoming obstacles and a commitment to working with and providing support to vulnerable people#

Health and Safety

  • To liaise with all emergency services when necessary
  • Ensure at all times the safety of yourself and others on the premises in which you work
  • To conduct daily Health and Safety checks
  • To report, log and communicate all incidents to the appropriate people
  • Conduct welfare checks as specified during the shift
  • Ensure adherence to YMCA Together visitor’s policy and procedure
  • To adhere to all risk management protocols.


  • To share information and expertise with the team, covering absence, and working together to provide a high-quality service
  • To contribute to the formulation of policy and procedures in relation to support services
  • Attend to all enquiries and pass messages onto relevant people
  • Develop excellent and robust relationships, protocols, contacts and service level agreements with referring agencies, statutory services and wider stakeholder
  • To attend and participate in regular team meetings to ensure good communication.

Professional Practice and Development

  • Attend regular supervision sessions with the Service Manager in accordance with the supervision contract
  • Maintain good professional practice and ensure ongoing development, through use of supervision and training
  • Respect the confidentiality of clients using the service and be responsible for the security of personal and confidential information
  • Carry out all these duties within the organisation’s safety guidelines
  • Ensure personal records are correctly maintained
  • Ensure effective communication with staff within YMCA Together
  • Work flexibly to meet the changing needs of the organisation
  • Undertake any other duties that may be reasonably requested
  • Flexible and positive approach with all team members
  • To be committed to learning and personal development both as an individual and as part of a team
  • Develop and/or maintain excellent and robust relationships, protocols, contacts and service level agreements with Merseycare, referring agencies, statutory services and wider stakeholders
  • Uphold and nurture YMCA’s Equal Opportunities policy of anti-discrimination across all services
  • Ensure compliance with code of conduct, including professional boundaries and confidentiality at all times.


The post holder will be required to have contact with a variety of people during the course of their work. The context of this contact will vary from formal ‘Key working’ to informal networking and relationship building with the Local Authority and other relevant agencies.

Annual appraisal and regular work review with line managers is an operational requirement, as is attendance at weekly support team meetings.

It is recognised that the organisation is operating in a dynamic environment and as such this job description may be varied in consultation with the post holder to reflect evolving needs of the business and changing nature of the job.

PERSON SPECIFICATION – Support Practitioner – Leeds Street

Qualifications – Essential

  • Qualification or working experience in homelessness, mental health or offending

Qualifications – Desirable

  • A recognised qualification in substance misuse or mental health
  • Qualification in welfare rights
  • IT qualification such as CLAIT, ECDL, ITQ.

Experience – Essential

  • At least 1 years’ experience of working within a hostel setting or similar and a working knowledge of support planning, welfare rights, benefits advice, mental health issues, offending, drug and alcohol misuse, working with partner agencies, safeguarding and resettlement.

Experience – Desirable

  • Outcomes Star
  • Experience working with refugees
  • Experience of co coordinating three-way meetings
  • Experience of working with end of life
  • Experience of resettling individual into independent living.

Knowledge – Essential

  • A working knowledge of providing support
  • A working knowledge of Health & Safety issues
  • A clear understanding of complex needs support issues such as mental health, homelessness, substance misuse and offending
  • Knowledge of safeguarding protocols
  • Understanding of how to deal with challenging and chaotic individuals.

Knowledge – Desirable 

  • Knowledge of health interventions
  • Knowledge of welfare rights
  • Knowledge of the Cognitive Analytical Therapy (CAT) framework
  • Knowledge of health intervention and harm reduction.

Skills – Essential

  • Computer literate, competent in working with Microsoft word, outlook, windows
  • The ability to conduct comprehensive and accurate risk assessments
  • To provide effective and consistent support planning with the people we support
  • Excellent IT, communication, interpersonal, interviewing and assessment skills
  • Excellent administration skills and the ability to accurately and concisely record information and write reports
  • Plan and deliver workshops and training sessions to residents, staff and partner agencies
  • Demonstrate creativity in overcoming obstacles and a commitment to working with and providing support to vulnerable people
  • Ability and willingness to work unsupervised
  • Ability to prioritise workload and meet deadlines.

Skills – Desirable 

  • Analytical, data collation and reporting skills

Behaviour/Attributes – Essential

  • Committed to improving the lives of people with complex needs
  • Committed to own personal development and CPD planning
  • Creative and dynamic approach with the ability to “think outside of the box” when providing solutions
  • Energetic, highly motivated with a reputation of being held in high regard by peers
  • Excellent interpersonal/ communication skills
  • Excellent negotiation/ mediation skills
  • Committed to own career development
  • Ability to work within & have commitment to YMCA ethos, philosophy and SHREK values, Strength, Humility, Respect, Empathy and Kindness
  • Energetic, dynamic and self-motivated

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