Juvenile Justice Direct Care Worker
Good Shepherd Volunteers connects recent college graduates to one-year, full time volunteer opportunities serving women, children, and adolescents affected by poverty, violence, and neglect. Our volunteers live together in intentional community, gain real-life experience in their full-time site placements, receive valuable training and development, and grow personally from the experience.
We currently have positions serving in youth counseling, education, foster care, domestic violence, and public policy. Our volunteers work side-by-side with experienced social workers, counselors, and educators, gaining tremendous foundation for their future careers. Many of our volunteers have gone onto graduate school once completing our program to pursue degrees in social work, education, medicine and law. Our placements are in New York City and New Jersey.
The GSV in this position works closely with adolescents in a juvenile justice residential detention facility. These placements are for youth in the criminal justice system as an alternative to incarceration. There are male and female houses, both with approximately 12 youth, typically ages 14-16. In the residences, we aim for a therapeutic milieu at all times. The volunteer in this position facilitates recreational activities, groups, and programming for youth, escorts youth to and from school as well as accompany youth to any medical appointments, court appearances, or other outings. The GSV also counsels youth when necessary, providing them with personal support and assisting in conflict mediation and resolution. The GSV may work alongside the Recreation Specialist, Education and Vocational Specialist, Behavior Management Specialist, and Health Services Staff.
Start your career in social justice with us!
- Working side-by-side with experienced social workers, counselors, and educators, you'll find yourself learning and growing every day through real-life experiences.
- Define your interests and gain skills that set you on a path to a rewarding career.
Each volunteer is backed by a community composed of:
- Fellow volunteers, who create a close-knit bond built through shared experiences
- Accessible staff, who support the volunteers’ professional and personal growth throughout the year
- GSV alumni and supporters, who stay involved with the program in various ways
Training & Development
- Challenge yourself within a safe and supportive environment. Begin with a week-long orientation to meet your cohort, gain a deeper understanding of the mission and tenets that will serve as the foundation for your experience, and transition into community life.
- Development continues across four weekend retreats throughout the year.
- In day-to-day work, each placement site offers professional supervision and training to support you in your role.
Additionally, you'll gain access to varied opportunities, such as training on trauma-informed practice, substitute teaching certification, United Nations Commission on the status of women, and many more.
- Get to know yourself and understand your impact on those around you. You will emerge from this challenging journey a better roommate, friend, family member, partner, and employee.
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