Vocational Development & Housing Specialist

Company Details

The Bowery Mission


The Vocational Development & Housing Specialist (Specialist) is a key member of Make Progress residential program team. In accordance with the Bowery Mission’s theory of change, the Specialist works to develop integrated, faith-based services that are carried out in collaboration with an interdisciplinary team (Community Life, Clinical Services, Operations and Spiritual Formation) in order to provide holistic support for clients’ independent living goals. The Specialist is responsible for ensuring that quality assessments, resources, and interventions are provided to assist clients in obtaining sustainable income and secure housing. The Specialist meets individually with clients, leads classes, assists in developing budgets, identifies vocational and housing opportunities and referrals, and coordinates engagement with volunteer instructors, mentors, community and corporate partners. The Specialist ensures prompt reporting of client progress and outcomes as per organizational standards.

Reports to: Clinical Manager

Key Responsibilities include:

  • Assess clients for vocational skills, job marketability, housing history, and barriers to progress in these areas
  • Support clients in updating resumes, searching for employment, preparing for interviews
  • Identify and provide referrals for vocational trainings, internships, and certifications
  • Support clients in building skills to grow professionally, follow a budget and maintain employment and housing
  • Meet regularly with and track the progress of clients throughout the stages of career and vocational development, employment search, and aftercare
  • Develop strong, ongoing relationships with area employers to encourage hiring and retention of program clients and identify new vocational resources
  • Engage with external, community constituencies and resources to grow partnerships (instructors, mentors, representatives) beneficial to clients
  • Maintain and regularly update database of resources (apartments, buildings, and/or real estate agencies) for housing referrals
  • Develop and facilitate support groups to assist clients in adjusting to living independently
  • Regularly provide team members with updates regarding client employment, income and housing needs and new resources
  • Recruit, train, evaluate, and provide support for high impact volunteers and serve as key contact with corporate partners
  • Maintain adequate records to meet internal and external requirements


  • Embraces the organization’s Statement of Faith
  • 2 years+ professional experience in career development with relevant population, previous experience supporting clients in securing housing, or other relevant experience
  • Bachelor’s degree in career services, human resources, management, social services, or related fields
  • Experience administering vocational assessments and facilitating vocational learning part of a larger model (i.e. IPS, WorkNet)
  • Strong understanding of NYC area job and housing market
  • Client advocacy and excellent collaboration skills
  • Understanding of client-provider relational boundaries
  • Knowledge and cultural competency for population served
  • Proficient in office computer technology with the ability train clients
  • Excellent oral and written communication


  • Supervisory experience, working in residential or shelter settings
  • Experience identifying new resources and implementing employment and housing models
  • Certifications in Mental Health First Aid, Non-violent Crisis Intervention, First Aid/CPR
  • Formal education or training in motivational interviewing and trauma-informed care
  • Ability to speak, read and write in Spanish a plus

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