Bootstraps – Outreach & Support Worker

Aunt Leah’s Place is a non-profit organization that helps prevent children in foster care from becoming homeless and mothers in need from losing custody of their children. To support youth on their journey to self-sufficiency, we provide supported housing, job training, and coaching on essential life skills.

If you are passionate about helping youth reach their employment goals, Aunt Leah’s has an opportunity for you! You’ll work with youth on career exploration, general life skills, resume development, and support youth to find and maintain work experiences.

Aunt Leah’s is growing – come and join our team in this exciting time as we expand our programs! Bring your creativity and energy and be a part of our growing Bootstraps employment program.

Job Summary:  

This position works as an Outreach & Support Worker for youth in and from care. 

The Bootstraps Project refers to the absurdly impossible action of “pulling oneself over a fence by one’s bootstraps”.  In today’s economy, most young people get their first few jobs through connections —relatives, teachers, coaches, friends and parents of friends; yet foster children experience the transiency of a foster care system where, by age 18, they experience on average, 9 different residential placements and 7 different schools.  Young people from foster care can come from familial situations of dysfunction, developmental disruption and neglect and/or abuse.  Some youth from foster care are often denied these essential social connections that allow for labour force integration.  The Bootstraps Project aims to fill this gap.


Education & Qualifications:

  • Minimum 2 years of post-secondary education in a relevant field of study
  • 1 to 2 years of relevant experience in a similar role
  • Experience in social work, career development, employee mentoring/coaching and/or youth engagement is considered an valuable asset



  • Satisfactory Criminal Record Check and Local Police Information Check
  • CPI – Non-Violent Crisis Prevention Intervention Training, or willingness to obtain
  • First Aid – Level C w/ CPR, or willingness to obtain
  • A valid BC Class 5 driver’s licence and access to a reliable vehicle
  • Proof of vehicle business insurance of $5 million liability
  • Clean Driver’s Abstract
  • Ability to work flexible hours


Key Duties and Responsibilities:

Essential Functions:

The primary goals of this position are to:

  • Help youth from foster care overcome barriers to employment and connect youth to available training and/or employment opportunities to gain valuable work experiences
  • Help connect youth from foster care to other resources to develop a broad range of skills and knowledge such as the retail and warehouse industry  – including, soft skills development, creating healthy training and employment networks and connections –to participate sustainably in the labour market 
  • Complete appropriate intake and follow up documentation including consent forms, Individual Service Plans, etc.
  • Coordinate with Aunt Leah’s Social Enterprises (Aunt Leah’s Thrift Store, Aunt Leah’s Christmas Tree Lots, and Aunt Leah’s Donation Centre Warehouse) to connect suitable youth to a Youth Training Program to develop employability skills
  • Promote education and skills development as being key to labour market participation
  • Provide Intake and Orientation on the elements and goals of the Bootstraps program
  • With each participant, develop and follow through on Individual Service Plans (ISPs) identifying training needs, key steps, timelines, resources and milestones to Sustainable Employment or Substantive Education/Training
  • Help participants complete assessments through Career Cruising self-exploration and planning software
  • Provide job search assistance & pre-employment counselling & coaching
  • Help incorporate appropriate and targeted essential skills development through the core modes of Skills for Success – Reading, Writing, Problem Solving, Numeracy, Digital, Creativity and Innovation, Communication, Collaboration and Adaptability
  • Provide participant with employment sessions which cover the core areas of Career & Occupational Information, Career Decision-Making Processes (Planning and Goal-Setting), Job Search Techniques, Job Application Processes, Resume and Cover Letter Preparation, Job Interview Preparation and Conduct; and, How to Accept, Start and Maintain Employment
  • Arrange for participants to obtain official certification which could include First Aid, Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS), SuperHost, or Food Safe
  • Set youth candidates up for success by providing transportation supports, work appropriate clothing and other employment supports as applicable
  • Collaborate with the workshop facilitator to ensure that Essential Skills programming and curriculum is appropriate and trauma informed for both at-risk youth and Indigenous youth
  • Conduct creative outreach to engage youth in and from foster care in the Bootstraps program
  • Coordinate with the Employer Engagement Officer to connect participants to employers for work experience placements and/or direct hires
  • Perform administrative duties including but not limited to: documenting case notes, file management, submitting cheque/visa requests for program participants, internal reporting and tracking, data entry and maintaining various excel spreadsheets
  • Incorporate understanding of wrap-around supports and work with the Case Manager to refer participants to applicable Aunt Leah’s programs/services to ensure participant youth are given the stability of housing, food security and social/emotional outreach
  • Participate in on-call as scheduled and is able to support and attend as required
  • Work as a positive and cooperative team member, attend meetings and participate in Society committees and events as required and /or directed
  • Perform other related duties that do not affect the nature of the work


Reports To:  Bootstraps Coordinator


Knowledge, Skills & Abilities (KSA):

  • Ability to work closely with youth to facilitate sustainable employment, training and/or education
  • Strong communication skills both verbal and written
  • Ability to handle sensitive information and maintain confidentiality
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Cultural competency
  • Ability to identify barriers to employment and appropriately address them
  • Perform job searches and resume writing with youth and other basic employment support as needed
  • Computer proficiency with MS Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) and virtual meeting software
  • Ability to select and screen appropriate youth candidates to put forward to potential employers
  • Ability to act, engage and support youth through a trauma informed lens
  • Ability to coordinate with multiple stakeholders to ensure youth are set-up long term for employment success
  • Ability to work collaboratively with the Bootstraps Coordinator and other Aunt Leah’s staff to incorporate employment and life skills development for youth and connect youth to access employment opportunities
  • Knowledge and understanding of wrap-around supports at Aunt Leah’s and the broader community
  • Attention to detail with an ability to complete documentation accurately


Working conditions:

  • This position may require occasional evenings and weekends
  • Primarily based out of Seymour Office in Vancouver, may be required to work from New Westminster Office occasionally; this position may require travel to various locations within Metro Vancouver
  • Work is generally performed in an office environment; flexibility to work remotely is required as needed

This position may be required to perform other related duties that do not affect the nature of the work.


We offer: A comprehensive benefits package (for positions that are longer than 6 months in duration) that includes: dental, extended health care including vision care and prescription, personal time package, and employee discount at our Thrift Store.

Hours of Work: Generally Monday to Friday (37.5 hours a week; 7.5 hours/day); may require working some evenings and weekends as well as some remote work during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Salary: Commensurate with qualifications.

How to Apply:
Please send your resume and cover letter, quoting Bootstraps – Outreach & Support Worker in the subject line, to [email protected] Short-listed candidates will be contacted for interviews. Thank you for your interest in Aunt Leah’s Independent Life Skills Society!



Every dollar counts

Your support helps kids in foster care and young mothers
achieve a better future.