Community Support Worker - Harm Reduction

Job city: 
Job region: 
Greater Toronto Area
Application Deadline: 
Tuesday, March 31, 2020 - 5:00pm
Job terms: 


Sistering is a multi-service agency which offers practical and emotional support to women and trans people facing a variety of challenging life circumstances, including poverty, homelessness, social isolation, mental health and trauma histories.

Position Summary:

The Harm Reduction Community Support Worker (CSW-HR) will be responsible for providing case management, harm reduction support and resources, referrals, accompaniments and housing support to women and trans individuals who access the harm reduction program. The CSW-HR will work as part of a community support team and will also be assigned to the harm reduction team which includes peer harm reduction workers and another CSW-HR. The CSW-HR will provide practical support, case support and advocacy to women and trans individuals from a client-centered, trauma informed, harm reduction, anti-oppressive perspective. The CSW-HR will have extensive harm reduction experience as well as experience coordinating and supporting peers. The successful candidate will bring a commitment to advocacy and social justice issues.

The CSW-HR will:

  • bring at least five years of proven experience in a community-based non-profit sector, environment
  • have experience delivering programs and services from a low barrier, trauma informed, harm reduction and relationship based framework
  • have an understanding of supporting and working with an anti-oppression and anti-racism framework
  • have a thorough understanding of and experience working in programs serving women and trans individuals with complex intersecting needs including homelessness, mental health issues, substance use issues and histories of trauma
  • have an understanding of a peer led model of engagement and have experience working with peers
  • have highly developed interpersonal skills and ability to build effective relationships with participants, team members and community members
  • have a demonstrated commitment to the principles of harm reduction



  • Work productively and collaboratively within a team to provide case management, referrals, housing and advocacy support to women and trans individuals from the harm reduction community
  • Provide individual support to women and trans individuals using case support, informal counselling, and trauma informed interventions
  • Support individuals housed under the Harm Reduction Housing Supports (Layered Supports) or other housing partnerships
  • Work with the Harm Reduction Coordinator; team; participants and peers to explore and create opportunities for harm reduction programming; develop, plan and deliver programming that is responsive and meet the needs of participants
  • Support existing harm reduction programming including kit making sessions; recreational and art programs and evening / morning drop in.
  • Deliver harm reduction programming and participate in the distribution of kits and information related to safer substance use
  • Ensure that harm reduction supplies are available and maintained in the Drop In and within the harm reduction program
  • Conduct outreach and provide information, community referrals and resources to individuals related to sex work, mental health, substance use issues, health and housing
  • Facilitate small and large group work
  • Identify, intervene and effectively deal with emergencies, crisis and conflict situations
  • Provide support to the drop in as needed; work on the drop in floor twice a month and participate in lunch service and Sistering events as required
  • Supervise placement students and volunteers

Advocacy and Community Building

  • Liaise and collaborate with external groups/agencies, strengthen and build partnerships with other organizations aimed at fostering the development of collaborative projects
  • Support Sistering’s active participation in initiatives and coalitions
  • Provide advocacy services on behalf of women and trans individuals within Sistering and other agencies
  • Work in partnership with women and trans individuals, community groups, coalitions and agencies to develop strategies for community action and social change
  • Collaborate with service users to identify directions and methods for social change
  • Develop and engage in advocacy in order to address systemic issues of homelessness and poverty with an emphasis on the rights of individuals who use drugs and consumer survivor initiatives

Peer Development; Students and Supervision

  • Provide support to all peers across the organization including: Drop In, Harm Reduction, Building, Kitchen and others as required
  • Consult and work with Harm Reduction peers to develop relevant harm reduction programming
  • Facilitate peer meetings and in conjunction with HR Coordinator; arrange for and/or facilitate in-service trainings for peers
  • Participate in the recruitment, hiring, ongoing supervision, and identifying goals and benchmarks for professional development and/or improvement for peers and students


  • Assist in the development of appropriate program evaluation tools
  • Complete program evaluations and participate in priority setting for Sistering’s Harm Reduction Program
  • Write reports, maintain up to date files, prepare monthly statistics
  • Complete and maintain OCAN assessments
  • Support the implementation of ongoing data collection systems which generate information to be used in program outcomes, reporting and evaluation
  • Participate in staff meetings and agency committees
  • Ensure that Harm reduction supplies are available both in the drop in and in the storage cupboards

Other Duties as Assigned


  • Ability to multi-task, work in a fast paced, sometimes unpredictable environment, identify key priorities and effectively see things to completion
  • Skilled in crisis intervention, de-escalation, conflict mediation, debriefing, training and group facilitation
  • Excellent communication skills both oral and written
  • Additional languages besides English an asset
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office Suite and other online tools
  • Experience working with Pirouette and SMIS

Work Conditions:

  • The CSW Harm Reduction works in the Drop In, Harm Reduction office and community. Sistering is a 24/7 operation, fast paced, intense environment.
  • There will be the risk of exposure to potentially unpredictable behaviours and situations. Sistering is a pet friendly facility and as such, employees will be expected to be in the proximity of animals. Compensation: Competitive salary based on experience and excellent benefits package

Term: Full Time - Permanent
Report to: Program Coordinator

Hours: 35 hours per week. including some evening and weekends

How to apply:

Apply by email subject “Application for Community Support Worker – Harm Reduction” Email to:


Sistering is an Equal Opportunity Employer; we welcome and encourage applications from racialized persons/visible minorities, Indigenous persons, persons with disabilities, ethnic minorities, and persons of minority sexual orientations and gender identities. Persons with disabilities who anticipate needing accommodations for any part of the application process may contact, in confidence, to or phone at 416-926-9762 ext. 242.

Thank you to all applicants for their interest; however only those selected for an interview will be contacted.