Working With Wood's
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What's it like working with Wood's Homes?
We Never Say No. We Never Give up. We Never Turn Anyone Away.
Our powerful mantra is made all the more compelling by the fact that sometimes it is very hard to commit to. This is because the children, young people and families that come to our many doors are in trouble and sometimes that trouble is very, very serious. Most of the time the answer is not easy; and sometimes it feels like very little, if any, progress is being made.
Children in trouble are afraid and they lash out in all directions and behave in ways that are confusing and upsetting. Parents of these children are afraid too, and they sometimes show this by being angry and resistant when they do not mean to be. Our job is to offer help and hope. This requires all of us to be non-judgmental, calm in a crisis, knowledgeable, curious and hopeful, creative and clear in your expectations, humble and respectful in the face of problems you may never have to face. It is a tall order.
Why we do what we do?
Our ultimate goal at Wood’s Homes is to become the best treatment service organization in Canada - a children’s mental health centre par excellence. We want to be the first place people think to call when they have a problem, big or small.
We are slowly but surely gathering evidence about the good work we do and we are more able to prove its worth than ever before. We are sought after for new and innovative ideas and people continue to refer children to us who are deemed “impossible.” Nothing like a challenge like that!
We can only do all of this with experienced, well-trained and educated professionals like you! People who have a desire to help others and care for them through thick and thin, energy and enthusiasm to burn and who are not overwhelmed by challenges, not defensive in the face of criticism or anger and focused on success - are the ones we are seeking. If you want to make a difference in the lives of others and are eager to learn how to do that, our children and families need you!
What does a “duty of care” mean for employees of Wood’s Homes?
Having a Duty of care at Wood's Homes means taking responsibility to take reasonable care to avoid acts or omissions that could expose people, for whom there is a responsibility, to a reasonably foreseeable risk of injury.
Duty of Care is defined simply as a legal obligation to: always act in the best interest of individuals and others; not act or fail to act in a way that results in harm; act within your competence and not take on anything you do not believe you can safely do.
Each person has a duty to ensure their action, or failure to take action, does not harm others. This needs to be reinforced for everyone wanting to work at Wood’s Homes. It is part of the occupational health and safety responsibilities and obligations for employers and employees.
What does the work involve?
Having children in our care is a 24 hour-per-day, 7 day-a-week commitment. You should expect to work shifts, including nights, evenings, weekends and holidays.
Exposure to Trauma, disturbing events, violence:
Children and adults who come to the doors of Wood’s Homes come with past experiences of trauma, abuse, abandonment, neglect, domestic violence, etc. They often come with disabilities that hamper good thinking processes and an inability to regulate their emotions as well. You will experience the pain and upset these clients feel and it will often be scary. It is our job to accept it, listen to it, protect it and manage these behaviours and the feelings beneath them with respect, kindness, forgiveness and safety for both yourself and the client.
How do you prepare for this career?
Consider the following points:
Wood’s Homes offers training for all staff in a wide variety of ways to handle disruptive and aggressive behaviours. We also expect that you are coming to this position with some practical and theoretical knowledge and skill that we expect you to use well.
It is also important to understand that your therapeutic role is very important. You will be a treatment specialist in some way not a babysitter or a disciplinarian. As such, you will be called upon every day to use the knowledge and skills you already have and bring to your position to benefit and understand the challenges of all clients who come to the doors of this children’s mental health centre.
This job demands more curiosity, and less control. What our clients do and say are keys to their future mental health and it is our job to encourage the expression of both their experience and their emotions. When a client feels safe with a staff member, often he or she will have to bear the brunt of many an outburst. This is uncomfortable and confusing most of the time. But curiosity is key as well as being able to stand back and realize that your feelings are insignificant it is the unknown for the client that is key.
What are the salary and benefits?
The majority of our employees are represented by a union CUPE, Local 4731. The pay ranges for all of these positions are identified in each of our Career Profiles.
Our group benefit carrier is Sun Life Financial. Wood’s Homes offers a comprehensive benefits package for union employees which includes health and dental coverage, vision care, insurances (life, accidental death and dismemberment and short- and long-term disability), and an Employee & Family Assistance Plan.
Vacation for all union employees begins at 3 weeks per year!
Wood’s Homes has a number of other enhanced benefits for its employees such as a Computer Literacy Program, a Christmas/New Year’s floater day, special leave (as defined in the collective agreement), and a number of in-house training and professional development.
What are the educational requirements?
Wood’s Homes is accredited every three years through Accreditation Canada as well as licensed under Child & Family Services (Region 3) with requirements to ensure that employee professional requirements are current.
As such, the majority of Wood’s Homes employees are professionals, and are required to have completed a recognized post-secondary education. Some positions require that you be registered with your professional association (or have this in process). These requirements can be viewed in each Career Profile.
Wood’s Homes is also recognized as an Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program and is able to offer training, seminars and workshops for credit. In addition to these ACE program opportunities, Wood’s Homes has a number of employees who are certified in-house trainers who provide core training programs such as Suicide Intervention, Medications/Universal Precautions and Therapeutic Crisis Intervention Training.
Employees working for Wood’s Homes are required to provide the following:
- Current Criminal Record Check (no older than 6 month) with the Vulnerable Sector Search [CPIC]
- Child Welfare Information Check (no older than 6 months) [Intervention Check]
- Drivers Abstract (No more than 6 demerits)
- Standard First Aid Level C Current Certification
- Copies of Educational Diplomas/Degrees
- Copies of registration with professional body (i.e. Chartered Psychologist, registered Social Worker, Nursing)
- Copy of all Relevant Training (Suicide Intervention Training, Safe restraints)