A halfway or sober living house is a critical part of many peoples’ recovery from drug or alcohol addiction. A halfway house provides shelter and housing for those that are not ready to return to the same environment that they left. Often, those that have been through detox and a recovery program need a place to stay. They need to strengthen their resolve to stay clean, and get the support they require following their release.
A halfway house is a way for people to get accustomed to the outside world where they are responsible for making their own decisions. They often rely on additional counseling and the help of 12-step programs. This is often a service that the counselors can assist with.
The Importance of Choosing the Right Team to Run the Sober Living Home:
Those running a halfway house have already completed the legal requirements, applied for the proper licenses, modified the home to accommodate residents, and are typically ready to hire their team and open the residential facility.
Making the right hiring decisions is critical to the success of the facility. Anyone making hiring decisions will need to be sure that all employees have had a background check before being hired to ensure there are no outstanding issues, and they are a good fit for the halfway house.
Some jobs are a great fit for those looking to change their current career track and enter into a career of being a halfway house counselor. Many skills can transfer from one job to another that would bring value to the staff member and benefit those living in the facility.
Four Jobs That Can Prepare You for a Position as a Counselor in a Halfway House:
It takes a certain kind of person to work in a halfway house. They need to have a wide range of skills as well and a desire to help others. They need to be compassionate to work with those that may be struggling to stay sober.
Here are some jobs that potential halfway workers may have that offer residents the benefit of their experience.
1. Registered Nurses: Registered nurses that are ready for a new career track are perfect candidates for jobs in a halfway house, especially as house managers, administrators, and counselors. If you look at the skills that RN’s possess, they are some of the same skills needed by residents of these facilities. Their “soft skills” can come in handy when dealing with residents.
These skills include:
Having compassion for others
Being organized and pay attention to details
Critical thinking enables nurses to evaluate problems and take steps to remedy them
They are emotionally stable and patient which helps them deal with difficult residents
They have great communications skills
Good bedside manner
Area able to keep confidential information and not share inappropriately
Ability to multi-task
They can also monitor residents and seek medical care should it be needed
2. Social Workers: Social workers are already used to dealing with people that have had problems in their life, issues with the law, or those that have struggled with addiction, or mental illness. Because of their current job, they are a good fit to be staff members. Job responsibilities include:
Can provide mental health counseling
Can conduct assessments of clients’ situation and needs
They have access to advocates that can help clients with public assistance and other resources
Can provide crisis intervention
Can coordinate treatment plans and continuing care
3. Correctional Officers: Correctional officers play a vital role in the legal and prison system. Organizations across a variety of governmental agencies rely on correctional officers. They work in jails, detention centers, and other venues where their expertise is needed. Because of their experience working with prisoners, those awaiting trial, or those that must meet with an officer as part of their release program. They, too, are a good fit for helping to maintain a facility. Their responsibilities include:
Supervise activities of inmates
Inspect facilities to make sure no contraband is available to inmates
Break up altercations and maintain a peaceful environment
Monitor and report on issues and behavior of inmates
Enforcement of rules and guidelines
4. Halfway House Counselors: Hiring a counselor that already has experience is a great option. They have already done the job, know what to expect, know how to work with patients, and possess the ability to be sympathetic, help the residents and guide them through the process of strengthening a patients’ resolve to stay sober and begin their new life.
Start a Halfway House:
If you decide to open up a halfway house and looking to traverse the process, your best resource is Keith Humes and founder of Open Up a Halfway House. He is an expert when it comes to investing in a halfway home. On his site, he offers an eBook and other information that perspective halfway house operators need to know before they invest in this new opportunity.
Everyone needs a second chance. By staffing your halfway house with the right personnel, you are giving those in need another chance to find success in their lives.