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Bissell Centre - Peer Support Worker

Jul 07, 2020

Peer Support Worker; Hope Terrace FASD Permanent Supportive Housing Program and Community Development Program- 1 full time 2 year contract position


Through our vision of eliminating poverty in our community and guided by a passionate concern for the dignity and well-being of each individual, our work is based on building relationships, hope and trust. By addressing multiple needs, Bissell Centre provides a holistic approach to helping families and individuals.   For more information, please visit



Bissell Centre is seeking the right individual to fill a full-time, 2-year contract position of a Peer Support Worker. The Peer Support Worker is a shared position between our Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Permanent Supportive Housing (FASD PSH) Program, a harm-reduction residence for people with FASD, and our Community Space program, which provides basic needs and community asset building for people experiencing poverty or homelessness.

The Peer Support Worker will inform the participants within these programs on risk factors of sharing equipment for substance use, having unprotected sex, strengthen their ability to prevent HIV and Hepatitis C, and help reduce risk-taking behaviours. They will also help residents learn about when it is appropriate for them to seek health care services and how to navigate that system to ensure they get the best supports. The Peer Support Worker will be someone who has used substances in the past and can thus relate to our clients without judgment.

The Peer Support Worker will also educate and help build competency within other staff, attend appointments with participants to advocate with them, and educate other professionals to reduce stigma and discrimination towards participants. The Peer Support Worker will be able to build trust and rapport well with the participants due to their ability to relate as a peer rather than a professional.

Specific responsibilities of the position include:

  • Assist people who use drugs and/or have unprotected sex with scheduling appointments, reminders, accessing care, and advocating for their needs.
  • Educate people who use drugs and/or have unprotected sex on HIV and Hepatitis C prevention and safer use practices.
  • Educate and help train Bissell Centre staff to reduce stigma and facilitate understanding.
  • Educate other professionals in the community and helping people who use drugs advocate for themselves.
  • Provide group programming geared towards community development by including participants in the group facilitation.
  • Identify participant strengths, resources, needs and aspirations in order to provide greater opportunities for enhanced support.
  • Work with participants regularly to collaboratively set goals, develop a plan of action, evaluate success, and revise plan accordingly.
  • Complete regular home visits in the FASD PSH program to create organic relationships between staff and participants.
  • Assist participants through role-modeling, teaching, information, brokering, advocacy, and providing practical assistance.
  • Assist participants in pest control, hygiene management, apartment maintenance, and daily living skills with the PSH FASD building.
  • Provide overdose prevention education as well as administer naloxone when necessary.
  • Be an active member in the FASD-PSH building and Community Space to provide de-escalation, promote respectful interactions with staff, resident/roommate mediation (FASD-PSH building specific) and the like.
  • Contribute to the cleanliness of the office and all common space within the building
  • Perform other duties as required


The ideal candidate would possess the following qualifications:  


  • Degree or Diploma in Social Science or related discipline is an asset
  • A person with lived experience will be considered an asset
  • Minimum of one-year related employment experience e.g. high-risk populations, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, Supportive Housing Experience
  • Experience with case management software is a considerable asset
  • Strong written and verbal communication and interpersonal skills, result oriented, good time management, strong organizational, problem-solving, reliable and advocacy skills
  • Familiarity with issues of poverty, homelessness and Edmonton’s urban core
  • In-depth knowledge of Harm Reduction Philosophies, FASD Informed approach, Client-Centered approach, Trauma Informed Practice will be considered an asset
  • Strong active listening skills will be considered an asset


Bissell Centre offers above average industry benefits including; employer subsidized medical and dental benefits, life insurance, disability, outstanding vacation and more! This a full-time position, working 40 hours per week.  Ability to work flexible hours to accommodate the needs of our participants is required. 


Interested candidates are invited to submit their resume and cover letter by July 10, 2020 to:


Tara Sobey

Manager, FASD Programs

Bissell Centre
10527 - 96 street
Edmonton, AB T5H 2H6



We thank all applicants for their interest. However, only candidates selected for interview will be contacted.


Bissell Centre is an equal opportunity employer who is committed to diversity within our community and welcomes applications from all qualified individuals regardless of race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, family status, genetic characteristics, or disability. Bissell Centre is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity for all employees, in accordance with provincially and federally legislated protected grounds.