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Company Name:
The Alex
Approximate Salary:
Not Specified
Calgary, Alberta
Social Services
Position type:
Full Time
Experience level:
2 - 5 years
Education level:
Bachelor's Degree

Mental Health and Addictions Counsellor

Mental Health and Addictions Counsellor – Ref. No. 19082

Community Health Centre

Permanent | Full-Time

The Alex: Changing Health. Changing Lives.  The Alex Community Health Centre is a not-for-profit organization that is changing how we look at health care in Calgary. Our health, housing and food programs support our most vulnerable neighbours, tackling tough health and social issues head-on.  Using a multi-disciplinary team approach, we focus care on assessment, intervention and promotion of all aspects of health. We embrace a model of health care that is accessible, responsive and participatory. In addition to the Family Health Centre, we run a Seniors Health Centre, a Youth Centre, two Mobile Community Health Buses, one Dental Health Bus, four Housing First Programs, a Community Food Centre and Youth Law. 

What we do and why we do it: 

The Alex Community Health Centre improves quality of life in our communities through a comprehensive model of healthcare.  Our focus is on prevention, and our team of professionals work hard to step in before long-term interventions are needed, giving preventative care in a welcoming, easy to access environment.  

We are currently seeking an enthusiastic Mental Health and Addiction Counsellor for our new addiction medicine services - working with clients with addiction as well as with mental, physical and social complexities.  This role reports to the Associate Director of Mental Health and Addictions and works collaboratively within our Primary Healthcare Team. This is a new position that will require flexibility and interest in program development.  To our ideal candidate, this is combination of brief solution-focused interventions and case management.  This is the role for you if you consider yourself a niche person who understands trauma, addiction, the determinants of health, and most importantly are passionate about vulnerable populations!  If you thrive on being a vital part in building this new initiative, apply now. 

What you will do: 

  • Provide time-limited counselling services to clients experiencing addictions
  • Connect clients to community services and programs
  • Support clients with housing, medication coverage and other basic needs
  • Conduct client assessments and create treatment plans with the client
  • Apply the principles of trauma-informed care in all interactions
  • Provide strength-based individual and group interventions based on the principles of CBT
  • Use Motivational Interviewing skills to help clients move through the Stages of Change
  • Educate clients, family members and the community about the epidemiology of addiction and mental illness, available treatment modalities and harm reduction strategies
  • Coach individuals towards meeting goals and adopting robust coping skills
  • Complete needs and risk assessments
  • Respond to crisis and emergency situations
  • Participate in data collection and program evaluation
  • Be a creative problem solver and have the ability to think outside the box in order to help clients achieve success
  • Facilitate addiction groups
  • Driving clients to community destinations; this is not an outreach role but occasional transport is required 

What you will bring:

  • Bachelor degree in social work, addiction counselling or other human services field
  • Minimum of two years of experience in the field of mental health and addictions including but not limited to treatment centers and shelters
  • Experience providing case management and solid understanding of community resources
  • Eligible for registration with their professional discipline in Alberta
  • Extremely passionate about supporting clients with addictions and other complex issues
  • Ability to build strong therapeutic alliances and relationships with hard to engage clients
  • Strong knowledge of neurobiology of addiction and mental health
  • Previous experience working with vulnerable populations
  • Strong motivational interviewing skills
  • Understanding the impact of trauma and the ability to provide trauma-informed care
  • Solid understanding of opioid replacement therapy and other pharmacotherapies for addiction  
  • Demonstrated effective communication, organization, advocacy, teaching, and rapport-building skills
  • Interest in program development and implementation
  • Strong written and oral communication skills
  • Confidence in dealing with conflict and at risk situations
  • Comfortable working independently
  • First Aid and CPR required
  • Non-violent crisis intervention required
  • Class 5 non-GDL driver’s license, a personal vehicle, a clean driver’s abstract, and $2 million liability insurance are required 
  • Knowledge of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People (UNDRIP) and the Truth and Reconciliation Commissions (TRC) 94 Calls to Action considered an asset

Why You Want to Work with Us:

The Alex is an innovative and diverse organization which seeks to invest in its employees and see them succeed in their chosen careers. If you are seeking a deeply rewarding, yet challenging career helping Calgary’s vulnerable populations, this might be the place for you! 

  • 3-paid weeks of Vacation
  • Paid Wellness and Personal Days
  • RRSP Matching after 6 months
  • Reimbursement of Professional Designation fees
  • Investment in Professional Development
  • Health and Lifestyle Enhancement benefit 

How to apply:

If you are as passionate as we are about being a part of the solution to resolve homelessness, please email your resume to [email protected] and be sure to include the job title and reference number in the subject line.  Deadline to apply is November 19, 2019 at 4pm. 

For further information about The Alex and its programs, we encourage you to visit our website at 

We thank all applicants for their interest, however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.