Alcohol and Drug (AOD) Counselor

BRC · San Jose, California
Department BRC
Employment Type Full-Time
Minimum Experience Mid-level
Compensation $26.00 to $27.00 per Hour

POSITION:                          Alcohol and Drug (AOD) Counselor

PROGRAM:                              Shelter-Based /Grant Per Diem Programs

LOCATION:                          Boccardo Reception Center, 2011 Little Orchard St, San Jose/Community 

SUPERVISOR:                      Clinical Services Director  

JOB TYPE:                           Regular, Full Time

COMPENSATION:                      Depending on qualifications




The Grant and Per Diem – Low Demand (GPD LD) Transitional Housing Program provides qualified homeless veterans with up to 2 years of transitional housing and supportive services at the agency’s Boccardo Reception Center (BRC) facility in San Jose.  In collaboration with the local VA Palo Alto Health Care System, GPD-LD provides 20 beds in a 10unit housing facility.  The goal of GPD-LD is to provide low barrier transitional housing services to chronically homeless Veterans who suffer from mental health or substance-use problems. GPD-LD assists homeless veterans to successfully transition from homelessness into more stable living conditions, and to help participants increase their self-sufficiency.


The Boccardo Reception Center (BRC) is the largest homeless shelter in Santa Clara County with a capacity of 250 singles served nightly. This facility is not only a shelter for people to sleep safely each night, it is also a community hub providing a large continuum of services. This low barrier shelter offers a medical clinic on-site, full service cafeteria, free laundry, computer lab, and other amenities. Shelter guests are offered support services, including case management, workshops, trainings, and more.

The AOD Counselor will work directly with the Clinical Director and The Veterans Program Manage to develop a service suite for the Veterans and shelter guests. This may include one on one therapy, group therapy, skill building, and more. There is a great opportunity for new program/service development with this position as it is a new position for the shelter.




Direct Services (70%)

  • Maintain a case load as an AOD counselor of persistently homeless individuals in Santa Clara County by providing individual and group therapeutic interventions
  • Provide drug and alcohol counseling to veterans enrolled in the GPD-LD program
  • Conduct comprehensive assessment of veterans use history and present needs
  • Work with program participants to develop and implement an individual treatment plan, and provide support to help them achieve their goals
  • Utilize supervision appropriately, maintaining open lines of communication and providing updates on client activity
  • Know and implement agency and program policies and procedures
  • Properly report any suspected cases of abuse
  • Maintain professional relations and conduct
  • Maintain thorough, accurate records of client activity and interaction with every program participant, as required by grant contracts.
  • Work with program participants to develop and implement an individual action plan, and provide support to help them achieve their goals
  • Meet regularly with program participants at a frequency determined by the clients’ needs
  • Provide crisis assessment and intervention
  • Participate in ongoing analysis of and program alignment with industry best practices
  • Provide coaching and training on topics of interest for program /agency staff
  • Assist with other duties assigned


Documentation (20%)

  • Document services via progress notes within 3 business days
  • Keep accurate documentation on all clients and ensure chart compliance
  • Proactively and consistently improve the quality and effectiveness of program services
  • Conduct ongoing re-assessments of the clients’ needs and self-sufficiency



Genera (10%)

  • Attend all meetings relevant to this position, including team meetings, agency trainings, and off-site trainings
  • Assist with office-related tasks as needed
  • Assist with other duties assigned





Education and Experience


  • Bachelor’s degree in social work or Counseling, preferred
  • Required Drug and Alcohol Certification


Skills, Abilities, and Knowledge


  • Strong understanding of PTSD, mental health symptoms, DSM 5 diagnoses, and chronic homelessness issues
  • Knowledgeable on Trauma Informed Care, CBT, and other evidence-based practices
  • Comfortable with using computer software and databases
  • Physical duties will include walking, sitting, ability to lift 25lbs 





  • Understanding of and sensitivity to the needs of the homeless population 
  • Ability to quickly build trust and rapport in interpersonal relationships
  • Demonstrated ability to develop and maintain priorities and meet established deadlines
  • High level of flexibility and ability to prioritize appropriately 
  • Exceptional organizational skills.
  • Strong sense of accountability
  • Ability to present oneself and the agency professionally to internal and external audiences.
  • Ability to work as a member of a team and can set and meet individual goals.
  • Ability to work with people of diverse socio-economic backgrounds.
  • Enjoy providing hands-on instruction on life skills





We serve more than 5,000 adults, veterans, families, and youth each year at eight locations including the Boccardo Reception Center, which is the county’s largest homeless services center. In

35 years of experience, we’ve learned that everyone has the potential to get housed and stay housed. We are relentlessly focused on eliminating barriers to housing and stability for everyone we serve.


HomeFirst is an equal opportunity employer and considers qualified applicants for employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability, veteran status, or any other status protected by law.


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  • Location
    San Jose, California
  • Department
  • Employment Type
  • Minimum Experience
  • Compensation
    $26.00 to $27.00 per Hour