Yakapna Casual Support Worker

  • Base/Location:Yakapna Healing centre
  • Reports To:Yakapna Team Leader
  • Hours:Casual Mon-Sun as per rotating roster
Position Scope: To provide support to children, parent(s) and families as they undertake their Healing Journey within Yakapna Centre.

Organisational Values:

  • Professional Integrity

We treat all our people with dignity and respect.

  • Quality

We always strive to do our best and improve the way we do things.

  • Responsibility

We commit to the actions we take to achieve the best possible outcome for our clients.

  • Client Focus

We work toward improving the health and wellbeing of our clients and community.


Agency Context:

Njernda Aboriginal Corporation is taking significant steps in the development and implementation of a service network that provides a range of culturally specific and holistic programs and services, tailor-made for the needs of our community.  In doing so, we have identified the need to provide ‘healing strategies’ for our children, youth, adults, Elders and families; strategies which stem from a deeply cultural and spiritual place in our hearts, minds and souls. In all that we do, we refer to our Ancestors who guide us on our path, and ensure that whilst we move forward, living and working in contemporary times, we continue to instil cultural and spiritual pride and strength in our children, families and community.


Our Yakapna Centre is an enormous step, in meeting the needs of our community by working in the “best interests” of our families and children, maintaining the family unit; enhancing cultural, family and community connections; providing preventive education for the future; ensuring access to a range of culturally sound services; and making “real and lasting change” that will last beyond the service. This holistic model of care is based on self-healing through trust, honesty, communication and accountability.


The Development of this Service Model is the first step along our path toward our Dream of restoring and healing families; this model has been developed through consultation with our staff and community members, to ensure that all aspects of this service are respectful, culturally appropriate, environmentally friendly, safe, and sound.


We will walk together with our families along a Healing Journey, which involves a number of key stepping stones (phases), to reach not only our goal of healing families, but to help them reach their goals, whichever they may be.


Position Context:

It has long been said amongst our Aboriginal community members in Echuca, that our families and children are in crisis. The service network related to families and children has historically been reactive/responsive, often leading directly to the removal of children into out of home care; and rarely about working with families to empower them to identify strategies for prevention and lasting change.  This approach has not been by choice but has been driven by the types of response funding we have previously received and the lack of available resources available to work proactively with the entire family unit to equip and empower them to make positive change. And now we look to the future, with the vision of providing a responsive service, which is able to work beside families, in a safe and nurturing environment.


This vision has particularly been driven by past experiences and the need for strategies which ensure that children remain in our community.


Yakapna Centre enables Njernda Aboriginal Corporation, Child Protection, and the Lakidjeka program to work in partnership, to provide our families and children, with opportunities to proactively address, those social and economic factors that have led to Child Protection and/or Police intervention. The longstanding cycle of child removal has not provided widespread opportunities for breaking the cycle. All too often, the cycle is perpetuated, when we do not deal with the ‘reason why’. This Healing Journey will ask families to identify and address the reason why, with our support and guidance.


Key Responsibilities:

  • Participate in ‘handover’ meetings at commencement of each shift.
  • To monitor and support the agreed routine for each family, as set out in their case plan and timetable. E.g. Support and gently encourage parent(s) as they tend to their children (bathing, bedtime, reading stories) in the evening.
  • To undertake administrative tasks such as maintaining case notes, completion of stores orders, answering phone.
  • Undertake general preparations for the following day. E.g. linen checks, washing and storing linen, general house cleanliness.
  • Assist in the buying of food and other household goods, and in the preparation of meals.
  • Assist in the day-to-day running of the Centre in respect to household duties and property maintenance as determined by the Manager.
  • Securing Centre for the night. E.g. checking door and window locks.
  • Providing families/parent(s) with time to talk about their day, or any issues and concerns, as required.
  • Comply with Centre Procedures and Standards as indicated by the Manager and agency manuals.
  • Carry out the agencies policies and procedures related to service delivery, client practice (eg critical incident reports, mandatory reporting, missing residents) and staff conduct.
  • Assist with the maintenance of a safe working environment for staff and residents.
  • Other duties as directed.


Social environment:

The Yakapna Support Worker shall:

  • Assist in the creation of a warm, respectful, secure and structured environment for all families and children in care.
  • Assist in the development of an appropriate set of rules and expectations in conjunction with the residents, Centre staff and the Manager.
  • Act as positive role models to the residents.
  • Maintain clear and professional relationships with the families in care.


Team work:

The Yakapna Support Worker shall:

  • Participate as a member of the Centre Team and promote a spirit of cooperation, respect, collaboration and professionalism with all staff.
  • Work cooperatively with the Centre Team to ensure that routines, community activities, expectations and behaviour management strategies are consistently maintained for the residents.
  • Constructively participate in supervision with the Centre Manager.
  • Participate in appropriate professional development opportunities and performance appraisal.


Service development:

The Yakapna Support Worker shall:

  • Implement the values of Njernda Corporation.
  • Contribute to policy and program development and best practice standards within Njernda Corporation.
  • Participate in program and service reviews – attend appropriate unit and other meetings. ➢ Be committed to own professional development.


Key Selection Criteria:

Applicants must possess:     

  • Previous experience working rotating shifts.
  • Extensive knowledge and understanding of Aboriginal culture, social and economic issues, and local family networks.
  • Ability to work in a multidisciplinary, multifunctional, energetic and dynamic environment.
  • Ability to work in a complex, crisis driven, high-pressured environment.
  • Ability to communicate effectively with a range of people from a range of differing backgrounds.
  • Numeracy and literacy skills required.
  • Successful applicant is required to undertake a Police Check before formal offer of employment.
  • An understanding of the Child Protection service system.
  • Ability to work with children, parents, and families especially those in crisis with complex needs

e.g. substance abuse, mental health, and family violence.

  • General computer skills.
  • Ability to build rapport quickly.
  • First Aid Certificate – or willing to undertake training








Skills and attributes:

  • The successful applicant will be a self-starter, showing initiative and able to work autonomously.
  • Will be required to complete Client Incident Management System; Mandatory Reporting and Child Safe Standards training.





  • Post-secondary qualifications e.g. Cert IV minimum in the field of Child, Youth a, Social Work, Social Welfare, Community Services and or/ Residential Care; or
  • Certificate IV in Child, Youth and Family Intervention (Residential and out of home care), including a mandatory trauma unit of competency; or
  • a recognised relevant qualification, plus completion of a short top up skills course.
  • Significant life experience, with culturally specific expertise as set out in each Selection Criteria and a willingness to undertake further studies will be accepted.
  • First Aid Certificate — or willing to undertake training.



Position requirements:

  • Availability for weekend work, shift work, and sleepovers.
  • First aid certificate (or preparation to undertake training to obtain certificate)
  • Current drivers’ licence
  • Compliance with Njernda Corporation Staff Resource Manual and other internal policy or practice guidelines
  • Medical and physical fitness
  • Ability to work through and resolve potentially stressful situations
  • Capacity and preparedness to undertake domestic tasks (e.g. Cooking, cleaning, mowing)


Performance review:

There is a 3-month probationary period with negotiated expectations for all positions within Njernda Corporation, which is formally reviewed.  The Yakapna Manager together with Njernda CEO conducts this review and all subsequent annual reviews of Yakapna Support Worker positions.

Salary and Conditions:

Remuneration will be in accordance with the Residential Services Award. Yakapna Support Staff are required to work in accordance with their shift, which may include work on public holidays.  Staff may be requested to work overtime. (Shift work and on-call work are paid according to the Award.  Salary packaging may be negotiated.


Police check/Working with Children check/Drivers check:

All Njernda Corporation staff must pass a police and criminal records check, Working With Children Check & Drivers Licence check prior to starting employment – which may be reviewed during the period of employment.



Please provide three referees – a referee check will be undertaken as part of the appointment process.


Other relevant information

  • Appointment is subject to a satisfactory Police check & Working with Children check.
  • Commitment to equal opportunity and occupational health and safety

Principles and practices are required.

  • You will need to disclose any pre-existing illness or injury you know about which could be affected by the described work duties. Under section 82 (7) of the Accident Compensation Act, failure to disclose such a pre-existing illness or injury will mean that, if employed, you will not be paid compensation for that condition.


Written applications should include a covering letter.  Please include the names and telephone contacts of at least two referees and forward to:


All applicants must address the Key Selection Criteria and include a recent resume.



Written applications should include a covering letter.  Please include the names and telephone contacts of at least two referees.

Written applications should include a covering letter.  Please include the names and telephone contacts of at least two referees and forward to:


Address your application marked: “Private & Confidential”.


To:                                                                  HR Manager

Njernda Aboriginal Corporation 

86 Hare Street, 

Echuca Vic 3564  

(PO Box 201)

Echuca Vic 3564 


Email                                                              jobs@njernda.com.au 


Fax:                                                                (03) 5480 2250  


All applications close:                                29th of January 2021 @ 4pm


All applications close: 29th Jan 2021

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