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Employment Opportunity Youth Care Counsellor – Cedar Walk Program

October 24, 2022

Who we are:

UNYA has been supporting the health and wellbeing of Indigenous youth in the Metro Vancouver area for over 30 years. As a respected non-profit, charitable organization, we recognize Indigenous youth as experts in their own lives and strive to provide youth with programs and opportunities that are relevant and meaningful to them.

At Urban Native Youth Association UNYA we have developed a Philosophy of Care foundation, drawing from best practices. These philosophies are the grounding framework that shapes all of our decisions and every interaction we have with the youth we serve. Following these philosophies empowers our staff to meet youth where they are at, by giving them the ability to balance flexibility and structure. This allows us to meet our youth’s needs, and ensure that our youth experience a consistent quality of care across all UNYA programs. Our 5 key philosophies are:


  • Trauma-Informed Practice
  • Two-Eyed Seeing
  • Harm Reduction Practice
  • Youth/Person Centered Practice
  • Culture as Therapy

Highlights of this opportunity:

Cedar Walk is an alternative education program for Indigenous youth ages 16 to 18 whose needs are not being met in traditional school programs. Indigenous teachings, knowledge, and perspectives are an important part of learning at Cedar Walk. We provide tools and create space for each student to experience and explore traditional Indigenous practices and teachings, and to share their own cultural knowledge.

As a member of the Cedar Walk program team the Youth Care Counsellor is responsible for working together with family, guardians, and other support workers to support youth in a way that considers all aspects of their wellbeing: physical, emotional, social, economic, and spiritual, at school, at home, and in the community.

 The Youth Care Counsellor reports directly to the Cedar Walk Program Manager. The position is 40 hours per week and regular hours will be Monday – Friday from 8:30am – 4:30pm. These hours will be adjusted occasionally based on the needs of the program.

Being a positive role model for youth, working in cooperation with others, and positively participating in programming activities while supervising and ensuring safety at all times.

Artwork created by Indigenous youth in Urban Native Youth Associations Overly Creative Minds program.

Being a positive role model for youth, working in cooperation with others, and positively participating in programming activities while supervising and ensuring safety at all times.

Qualifications and Conditions:

  1. Educational experience required: Bachelor’s Degree in a relevant field, 2 years of recent related experience, or an equivalent combination of education, training, and experience.
  2. Experience working with the Indigenous community. Must demonstrate a good working knowledge of community resources in Vancouver, particularly youth & Indigenous-specific resources.
  3. Knowledge and understanding of the family and social issues that Indigenous youth face today, including the generational impacts of the residential school system on families and communities.
  4. Must demonstrate the ability to identify with mandate, policies and procedures of the organization.
  5. Must have a criminal record check completed by and satisfactory to UNYA.
  6. Proof of Covid-19 vaccination will be required.
  7. Given the needs of the youth accessing our programs, priority will be given to qualified Indigenous, First Nations, Metis, Inuit candidates as per section 41 of the Human Rights code.
  8. Must have a valid Class 5 BC Driver’s License (Class 4 is an asset) and be willing to provide a Driver’s Abstract.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  1. Being a positive role model for youth, working in cooperation with others, and positively participating in programming activities while supervising and ensuring safety at all times.
  2. Establishing positive rapport and developing relationships with youth and other professionals.
  3. Care-planning, advocacy, informal counselling, developing intervention strategies, providing on-site support. Organizing, facilitating, and supervising youth in various activities.
  4. Recording required information where necessary (paper records, Sharevision, Excel, etc.).
  5. Contributing to a team focused on increasing stabilization, belonging, and empowerment for Indigenous youth, and fostering a positive and engaging workplace for all.
  6. Creating a safe space for all youth and staff by responding to behaviours and situations through a trauma informed lens, modelling respectful behaviour, and through thoughtful and fun interactions with staff and youth.
  7. Positively and proactively address any concerns, incidents, or crises which affect youth participants, program operation and mandate, UNYA policies, and community relations.
  8. Adhere to UNYA’s Philosophy of Care, and all program-specific and organization-wide policies and procedures.
  9. Performing daily tasks that include meal preparation and planning, maintenance and cleanliness of the space, correspondence with youth, families/caregivers and other service providers.
  10. Perform any other duty deemed necessary by the Program Manager to ensure the safe, healthy, and productive operation of the program.

What we offer:

  • Salary range $49,219.70 – $57,329.64/year
  • 40 hours a week
  • Comprehensive benefits package
  • Vacation, Sick, and Wellness days
  • Access to our Employee Assistance Program (EAP) which consists of no-cost counselling services to UNYA staff
  • Support from UNYA’s Elder in Residence for cultural and spiritual guidance or teachings
  • Monthly Staff development

How to apply:

If you would like to become a part of this tremendous team, send a cover letter and resume indicating the position you are applying to the attention of the Manager at [email protected] Posting will close when position is filled. Only those shortlisted will be contacted.

***We are an Indigenous youth organization whose mandate is to provide meaningful opportunities for Indigenous youth. We encourage qualified Indigenous – First Nations, Metis, and Inuit, applicants to apply. If you identify as Indigenous, please let us know in your application! Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.