START Support Worker


Job Post Date: 26th October 2023


Employers Details

Company/Organisation Name: The Good Shepherd Centre, Kilkenny
Contact Person: Deirdre Healy
Phone: 085 8609213

Job Details

Job Title: START support worker
Job Location: Carlow
Responsibilities include:

Main Roles and Responsibilities:
1. Work within the framework of the overall objectives and Policies of the Good Shepherd Centre.
2. To undertake assessments and support planning (recovery focused) with clients. To assist clients address recovery goals and objectives in keeping with life skills and tenancy sustainment.
3. This contract is a specified purpose contract.
4. To ensure to support tenants in accessing recovery focused training, education and employment opportunities.
5. To work as part of a multi-disciplinary team and service.
6. To maintain a caseload of clients and offer clients ongoing support until cases are handed over to the appropriate support services.
7. To accompany and provide support to clients with appointments to other services, where appropriate
8. To be responsible for keeping up to date casework records, daily logs and written assessments.
9. To work in close liaison and co-operation with other teams across mental health and community-based services, in particular other Statutory and Voluntary Agencies as deemed appropriate
10. To work to the service model and standards of best practice
11. To meet regularly for supervision of work with your assigned Supervisor
12. To attend all nominated training by your line manager
13. To supervise students or volunteers as requested by assigned supervisor or senior manager.
14. To work a flexible roster over 5 days and occasional evenings to meet the objective of the service
15. To implement existing policies and procedures and to input into the development of new ones
16. To plan, implement and evaluate the daily activities.
17. To undertake such other duties as might be reasonably assigned from time to time in consultation with the Team Leader.
18. To be vigilant to any Health, Safety and Welfare risks in the workplace and bring any concerns to the attention of your line manager or Health & Safety Representative

The GSCK are an equal opportunities employer

To engage with the identified service users with a view to facilitating them in defining and attaining their own housing and recovery goals, based on the ‘recovery principles’ of hope, control and opportunity. The worker will use a strengths based approach in :
• Conducting needs assessments, which will inform agreed care plans: This will involve identifying and agreeing how the service user would like to be supported by the worker and a discussion about the needs and actions written into the service user’s mental health care plan/clinical file.
• Assisting the service user to navigate processes required by the Local Authority
• Ascertaining and supporting the service users’ preferences in relation to fuller participation in their local and wider communities
• Supporting the service user in developing life skills which will foster independence and autonomy ; this may involve assistance with practical tasks
• Communicating with the service user’s treating team to review their needs and/or care plan; this will involve direct contact with key MDT members who will have been named in the referral.
• Facilitating peer support of those with lived experience when appropriate
• Supporting the service user in sustaining his or her tenancy by addressing the key issues and planning for risk management when required.
• Supporting the service user to self advocate when required or advocating on his or her behalf as agreed. S/he may be supporting the service user to engage with the approved advocacy organizations when appropriate.
• Case managing their referrals to optimize tenancy sustainment and independent living.
• Promoting the service user’s safety, health and wellbeing.

• Essential:
Eligibility Criteria

Qualifications and/or experience


i) Possess the National Diploma in Applied Social Care Studies awarded by awarded by Quality & Qualifications Ireland, (QQI) (Dearbhu Cáiliochta agus Cáiliochtai Éireann) / DIT.
ii) Possess the Diploma in Social Care awarded by awarded by Quality & Qualifications Ireland, (QQI) (Dearbhu Cáiliochta agus Cáiliochtai Éireann) (formerly HETAC) / /DIT.
iii) Possess the Diploma in Applied Social Studies/Social Care from DIT.
iv) Possess a BA (Ord) in Social Care Practice (Level 7 on the QQI framework).
v) Possess Open Training College National Diploma in Applied Social Studies (Disability).
vi) Possess an equivalent qualification


b) Candidates must have a suitable standard of professional attainments.

c) Candidates must have the requisite knowledge and ability (including a high standard of suitability and ability for the proper discharge of the duties of the office).

d) A full and clean driving license


• Not less than 2 years’ experience in residential social care services; preferably in the mental health/supported housing sector
• leadership experience in social care services, including supervision of social care staff would be a distinct advantage
• Extensive experience in working with behaviours that may challenge and supporting care-staff in similar environments
• Supporting organisational change in a complex environment
• Recording, reporting and information management
• A full and clean driving license

Post Specific Requirement: Ability to demonstrate

• A thorough knowledge of principles of Social Care / Community Work
• A knowledge of Social Care supervision
• Knowledge of health and safety legislation; data protection, report writing, funding structures for homeless services
• In depth knowledge of Case Management, Key working & Holistic Needs Assessment, and use of PASS Database.
• Knowledge of the principles of Non-Violent Crisis Intervention and/ or Therapeutic Crisis Intervention would be an advantage
• Understanding of management principles in social care settings
• Knowledge and understanding of relevant Government policy on homelessness and the Quality Standards Framework for Homeless Services

Salary: €16.10 p/hour

Any Other Information:
The START project seeks to develop effective and sustainable housing pathways for mental health service users that require housing. Many of the individuals will need specialist, individualised psychosocial support towards living in secure accommodation which is suited to their needs and is of their choosing.
The Mental Health Services have an interest in developing “a whole systems approach to recovery from mental illness that maximises an individual’s quality of life and social inclusion and encourages their skills, promoting independence and autonomy to give them hope for the future and leads to successful community living through appropriate support.” (Killaspy et al, 2005)

Secure tenancies with support are recognized as the way forward for many of those with complex needs. A number of Mental Health service users require stable and secure accommodation as their current living arrangements are exacerbating their mental health difficulties; they may have developed a cycle of relapse and repeated admissions to the admission unit or there is risk of homelessness or increased risk of self- harm or safeguarding issues.
The Good Shepherd Centre in conjunction with Mental Health Service Area 5 Carlow and in partnership with Carlow Council will provide homes and a recovery orientated tenancy sustainment programme.

*Closing Date: 30/01/24
*How to Apply/Contact Details:

Share this: