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Shelter Job: Client Advocate, Jessica Martel Memorial Foundation (Morinville AB)

Employment Opportunity for: Client Advocate

Who Are We?

The Jessica Martel Memorial Foundation is a not-for-profit that operates Jessie’s House, a 35-bed stage one emergency shelter for survivors of domestic violence located in Morinville, AB (20 KM north of St. Albert). Jessie’s follows trauma-informed practices while serving Sturgeon County including CFB Edmonton, St. Albert, Alexander First Nation, and surrounding communities lacking shelter services. Visit www.jmmf.ca to learn more about who we are and what we do.

Employment Type:          Full-Time Permanent Position (Night Shift)

Work Hours:                    12-hour shifts with a rotating schedule of Overnight, Weekend Holiday Shifts of 4 on 4 off Rotation

Application Deadline:   Open until suitable candidate found.

Start Date:                      TBA



The Client Advocate reports directly to the Director of Programs and Services at Jessie’s House. Client Advocates are clients’ first point of contact and address the day-to-day needs of in-shelter clients. The Client Advocate’s main duties include, but are not limited to, providing crisis intervention to clients as needed, answering the Crisis Line, client file documentation, and conducting shelter admissions, check-ins, risk assessments, and shelter departures. Working in collaboration with the client and the broader shelter team, the Client Advocate supports clients in successfully meeting their case plan goals. The Client Advocate must operate from a trauma-informed, decolonial, harm reduction, and anti-oppressive mode of practice.



  • Adheres to agency policies and procedures, including the principals of harm reduction, anti-oppression, decolonization, and trauma-informed care.
  • Adheres to relevant provincial and federal regulations and legislation, including any relevant regulatory bodies’ ethical frameworks of practice.
  • Has well established self-care practices and the capacity to perform well in a high-crisis, emergency shelter environment. 


  • Maintains accurate and comprehensive written client file documentation regarding all client interactions according to established shelter procedures.
  • Input crisis calls, case notes, and other client data into the Outcome Tracker database on a regular basis.
  • Attends agency and team meetings when scheduled and participates regularly in continuing competency, professional development and/or scheduled training opportunities.
  • Participates in regular weekly client case management meetings with the Case Management, Outreach, and Child Support teams to ensure adherence to comprehensive and individualized client case plans.
  • Supports with the orientation and training of new shelter personnel and/or practicum students as needed.


Client Related

  • Establish a supportive and non-judgmental shelter environment for clients navigating family violence, gender-based violence, trauma, homelessness, mental wellness and/or addictions challenges.
  • Provides holistic emotional support, community referrals, and advocacy to clients.
  • Supports Team in implementing individualized client case plans by empowering clients in meeting their in-shelter goals, role modelling adaptive life skills, and positively reinforcing client strengths and resiliencies.
  • Answering the Crisis Line and providing crisis intervention to potential clients and in-shelter clients accordingly.
  • Conducting client admissions, regular check-ins, risk assessments, and departures according to established protocols.
  • Address the immediate day-to-day needs of clients in shelter, including support with basic needs (eg. food, toiletries, clothing, crisis support, medical referrals, etc.).
  • Educate clients on the dynamics of family, gender-based, and/or intimate partner violence, and trauma, intergenerational or otherwise.
  • Provide support with implementing adaptive coping mechanisms or, where applicable, reducing the harms associated with maladaptive coping mechanisms.
  • Facilitate regular in-shelter programming for clients, including self-care activities, life skills development, and/or other relevant topics related to client empowerment and wellness.
  • Liaising with relevant community agencies and stakeholders in a positive and professional manner.

Facility Related

  • Regular housekeeping and maintenance duties such as cooking, cleaning, preparing rooms for client admissions and/or departures, laundry, and general facility upkeep as needed.
  • Supports the Operations Manager by communicating the need for shelter supplies or repairs, including shelter food, house or client medications, cleaning or office supplies, etc.
  • Working in a high stress, with disruptions, high pressure environment.

The Client Advocate will also complete all other duties as assigned by the Director of Programs and Services, including providing occasional relief support to the rest of the shelter team where required.


  • A minimum of post-secondary level education in social work, psychology, or another social science from a recognized educational institution, with current registration with the appropriate regulatory body where applicable. A combination of other relevant experience and qualifications will also be considered.
  • Strong knowledge of the principles of harm reduction, anti-oppression, decolonial practice, housing first, and trauma-informed care; relevant experience may be substituted.
  • Strong knowledge of best practices in family violence, gender-based violence and intimate-partner violence intervention. Experience working in a residential facility or emergency accommodation is preferred.
  • Experience working with persons with mental health and/or alcohol & substance abuse challenges helpful.
  • Excellent capacity for networking and liaising with external community agencies and relevant stakeholders, and representing the agency positively and professionally.
  • Strong knowledge of the Safer Spaces Act, the Residential Tenancies Act, the Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act, the Protection Against Family Violence Act, and other relevant legislation is considered an asset.
  • Possessing relevant family or intimate partner violence, gender-based violence, intergenerational trauma, and/or marginalization is considered an asset.
  • CPR Level C and Standard First Aid, standard non-violent crisis intervention certification, a Child Intervention Record Check, and a Criminal Record and Vulnerable Sector Check are conditions of employment.


  • Working primarily in an emergency shelter environment in the town of Morinville.
  • Working 44-hour work week rotating schedule of overnight and weekends shifts.
  • Working in a high stress, high pressure environment.

Why You’ll Want to Work with Us?

As a new shelter, you’ll be involved in shaping organizational culture and have ongoing training and opportunities for advancement within the organization. We provide a competitive salary and benefits for full-time and casual staff.  We are also committed to work-life balance, emphasizing self-care.

How to Apply?

Send a current resume and cover letter, quoting the position title in the subject line to employment@jmmf.ca.  Include 2 professional references.