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HomeFirst Services

Resident Advocate

BRC – San Jose, California
Department BRC
Employment Type FT/PT
Minimum Experience Mid-level
Compensation DOE

POSITION:                                    Resident Advocate        

PROGRAM/LOCATION:              Boccardo Reception Center/San Jose, CA

SHIFT:                                             Day, Swing, Grave

SUPERVISOR:                             Shelter Manager

STATUS:                                       Full-time/Part-time, Non-exempt




The Boccardo Reception Center (BRC) is the largest homeless shelter and service facility in Santa Clara County, with a capacity of up to 250 homeless persons. The BRC is a multi-service facility that offers numerous programs and services, including year-round emergency shelter, a medical clinic, public benefits enrollment and advocacy, job search and retention assistance, group workshops and additional resources, information and referral to community partners, housing search and financial assistance, as well as free restroom, shower, and laundry facilities. The BRC is open and staffed seven days per week, 24 hours per day.

Our primary goal is to provide a safe environment and basic needs services. Resident Advocates are responsible for the care and supervision of the guests staying at the shelter. 




Direct Client Service (90%)

>Responsible for the care, welfare, safety, and security of guests during their shelter stay

>Maintain compliance with agency/shelter site policies and procedures

>Welcome all agency guests to the facility, including program participants, volunteers, staff, and community members

>Check guests into and out of the facility using the HMIS database

>Complete intake of homeless guests, including thorough and accurate VI-SPDAT assessments

>Provide direct guest support with developing, updating, and reassessing housing plans

>Make timely and appropriate decisions in emergency situations, including: awareness of the need for safety of all participants involved, mandated reporting, and contacting appropriate staff/responding agencies

>Respond to guest crises using de-escalation and Mental Health First Aid techniques as applicable

>Adhere to HomeFirst’s service delivery practices, including Trauma Informed Care, client- centered practice, and Crisis Prevention Intervention model

>Complete and submit Incident Reports, Behavioral Contracts, and Gross Violations as needed

>Provide information, referrals, housing resources, and program support to shelter guests

>Distribute clothing, linens, toiletries, and any other items supplied by the program

>Assist with daily set-up and break-down of the shelter, including but not limited to setting-up sleeping mats, tables, and chairs as needed

>Provide general site clean-up, reporting any maintenance or janitorial needs to the Shift Manager or Program Manager in a timely manner

>Conduct bed, facility, and perimeter checks      

>Assist with monitoring meals and determining meal counts where appropriate

>Assist with set-up and break-down for any special events or activities

>Perform other guest service duties as assigned

>Provide socialization skills- empathetic listening, problem solving, information and referral, mediation, crisis intervention

>Check and respond to all work e-mails on each shift

>Complete all paperwork in a timely manner

>File paperwork as directed

>Maintain professional conduct, attitude, and appearance

>Communicate to and delegate tasks to next shift as needed

>Maintain confidentiality regarding clients, personnel, and other internal agency affairs

>Exercise responsibility appropriate to the position and delegated authorities

>Conduct business in accordance with the Employee Handbook, exercising sound judgment and serving the best interests of the agency and the community

>Committed to treat each shelter guest with respect and dignity

>Capacity to set priorities in consultation with supervisor

>Demonstrated conflict resolution skills


General (10%)

>Represent HomeFirst and the program appropriately to volunteers, donors, outside agencies and the public

>Assist with office-related tasks as needed

>Attend all mandatory meetings, workshops, and trainings

>Perform other general duties as assigned




Education and Experience 

>AA degree (or equivalent of 2 years of higher education) or two years of field experience in social services

>Experience working with homeless individuals preferred


Skills, Abilities, and Knowledge

>Proven ability to develop client service or housing plans

>Ability to work with people of diverse social backgrounds; strong interpersonal skills

>Strong written and oral communication skills

>Working knowledge of Microsoft applications, email, and internet, and able to learn data entry using web-based database systems

>High level of flexibility and ability to prioritize appropriately

>Observant of the environment and the people within it

>Work effectively within a team

>Present with a high level of professionalism to internal and external audiences

>Strong sense of accountability

>Strong customer service skills

>Ability to multitask efficiently

>Advocacy and case management skills

>Knowledge of local social service resources/providers

>Effective problem-solving skills

>Demonstrate strong leadership skills

>Excellent organizational skills and ability to follow through until completion

>Reliable; excellent punctuality and attendance for scheduled work shifts

>Ability to work flexible hours, especially nights, weekends and overnights.  Must be available by telephone, on-call, and as needed during employee’s scheduled availability

>Able to take initiative and work independently and productively with minimal supervision

>Ability to meet deadlines and complete multiple tasks in a timely manner

>Ability to maintain professional conduct, attitude, and appearance at all times

>Must be able to work under pressure, handle stressful situations, and maintain flexibility



>Ability to regularly lift up to 30 lbs.

>Sensitivity to the needs of homeless individuals and families

>Desire to continually develop skills and increase knowledge 





HomeFirst is a leading provider of services, shelter and housing opportunities to the homeless and those as risk of homelessness in Santa Clara County.  We serve more than 4,000 adults, veterans, families, and youth each year at seven locations, including the Boccardo Reception Center, which is the county’s largest homeless services center.   In more than 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.

Home First 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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    San Jose, California
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