Youth-In-Transition Housing Worker - Wabano Centre for Aboriginal Health

Mar 26, 2021
Ottawa, Ontario

Youth-In-Transition Housing Worker

(VYSA- Voluntary Youth Service Agreement Facilitator)

Full-time position- Contract to March 31, 2022 with the possibility of extension



Over 1/3 of homeless people in Ottawa are Indigenous. Wabano has been providing homelessness services to our community for over 20 years. But both “houselessness” and homelessness have negative connotations… at Wabano, we see our role more as “path finders”. Whether clients need help finding or keeping their home, our team is here to help clients create a safe, cozy place that they can feel pride in calling home.

Wabano is now looking for a Youth-in-Transition Housing Worker to be part of our “Home Team” working collaboratively within the Indigenous-specific coordinated access system in Ottawa. (See Appendix for more information on this system.)

We are looking for an individual that is inspired by the work of grassroots initiatives and is motivated to find innovative ways to foster rapport and use technology to streamline communication.


The Role

As the Youth-in-Transition Housing Worker, you will provide housing services to youth ages 16 and 17 who have been identified as being First Nation, Inuit or Métis and in need of protection. The Youth-in-Transition Housing Worker will advocate for youth to be placed on a VYSA with Children’s Aid Society, provide program support and support youth to sustain and keep housing.

To meet these responsibilities, the Youth-in-Transition Housing Worker will:

  • Assist youth to access appropriate, affordable housing or assist youth to resolve current housing crisis;
  • Serve as a first contact for youth aged 16 and 17 and conduct intake in order to determine client needs and appropriate supports;
  • Assist youth with obtaining income supports and other community services/resources to facilitate obtaining or retaining housing;
  • Advocate and support youth who are in need of protection to be placed on a Voluntary Service Agreement with the Children’s Aid Society;
  • Provide support in all facets of the clients life as identified by the client, including (but not limited to):  housing, employment, financial aid, health care, social supports;
  • Refer clients to appropriate internal and external services as required in order to ensure on-going support;
  • Visit prospective housing with clients and assist with lease-signing, where necessary;
  • Advocate for the specific housing needs of eligible youth to municipal service managers and local housing providers, enhancing cultural sensitivity and respect;
  • Work closely with community agencies to ensure all eligible youth have access to the program and support;
  • Develop an action plan for clients and follow up as necessary;
  • Provide programs/services at a time which best meets the needs of clients, which will include evenings and weekends as directed by the manager (regular evenings and occasional weekends required);
  • Provide continual support to youth such as life-skills programming financial management, budgeting, etc. to support sustained housing;
  • Promote Indigenous beliefs, values and traditions that enhance health;
  • Other client-related tasks as required.



  • Post-secondary completion in Social Work, Child & Youth work, Indigenous studies, or other relevant area of study.
  • Two years of experience working with youth, at-risk or homeless youth;
  • Thorough experience in areas of trauma, family violence, abuse, addictions, homelessness;
  • Knowledge, sensitivity, and awareness of history, culture of Indigenous people;
  • Ability to follow direction;
  • Ability to function in a high pressure/high stress environment;
  • Excellent oral and written communications and computer skills;
  • Knowledge of Indigenous and non-Indigenous community resources and related services;
  • Excellent time management skills, ability to multi-task and prioritize;
  • Current CPR-First AID level C or willingness to acquire the training.
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office tools, particularly Excel, Word and PowerPoint;
  • Ability to work flexible hours including evenings and weekends.
  • Successful applicants will be required to submit a criminal reference check.


Application Details

Please submit your application to Application materials include a cover letter and resume. This opportunity will remain open until filled, so tell us your story early!

Wabano is an inclusive and equitable organization, encouraging applications from qualified candidates, including persons with disabilities and members of visible minorities. The position is open to all qualified applicants, although preference will be given to candidates of Indigenous ancestry (please self-identify in your application).

Wabano is committed to providing employment accommodation in accordance with the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. If contacted for an employment opportunity or interviewing, please advise if you require accommodation.

We thank all those who apply. Only those selected for further consideration will be contacted.



What is a coordinated access system?

From Reaching Home: Canada’s Homelessness Strategy Directives

A coordinated access system is the process by which individuals and families who are experiencing homelessness or at-risk of homelessness are directed to community-level access points where trained workers use a common assessment tool to evaluate the individual or family’s depth of need, prioritize them for housing support services and then help to match them to available housing focused interventions.

Quality coordinated access systems share several features, including a centralized database that collects and displays real-time data on clients and available housing and supports; clear access points of entry; common assessment; standardized protocols; and resources (for example, staff) focused on ensuring that people can connect with appropriate housing and housing supports in an efficient manner.


  • Access: the engagement point for the individual or family experiencing a housing crisis. This may include emergency shelters, mobile outreach teams, day centres, other community-based organizations and hotlines.
  • Assessment: the process of gathering information about an individual or family accessing the crisis system.
  • Prioritization: the process of determining the individual’s or family’s priority for housing based on information gathered through the assessment.
  • Matching and referral: the process whereby the individual or family is matched to and offered housing based on project-specific eligibility, needs and preferences


Indigenous Coordinated Access System in Ottawa

There are three Indigenous organizations in Ottawa who are funded to implement coordinated access in Ottawa: Wabano, Minwaashin and TI (Tungasuvvingat Inuit).

Currently, everyone who is homeless initially goes through City. The City then refers any Indigenous clients to Wabano.  Wabano is responsible to match the client to the appropriate services/agencies. This includes Indigenous agencies who have been funded for coordinated access (Minwaashin and TI) as well as other housing partners who are part of ACAB.

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How to Apply