Peer Support Worker - Indigenous, Substance Use Services

City Abbotsford
Job ID 2023-43936
General and Clinical Support - Nursing Support
Employment Type
Full Time
Scheduled Start & Stop Times
Days Off
Monday, Saturday, Statutory, Sunday
Mental Health & Substance Use Services
Salary at Time of Posting
$26.30 - $28.74 / hour

Salary range

The salary range for this position is CAD $26.30 - $28.74 / hour

Detailed Overview

In accordance with the Mission, Vision and Values of Fraser Health, the Peer Support Worker (PSW) - Indigenous shares their own consumer knowledge and lived experience of substance use and mental health, and also within the context of their shared peer experience of Indigenous culture, to assist clients of the assigned team (ie. SUSAT, ICM) in their identified goals. The PSW identifies themselves as a peer and collaborates with the client and assigned team to meet individual needs and situational requirements by providing information from a lived experience perspective in order to assist clients to obtain services from other Fraser Health staff, First Nations Health Authority, Métis Nation BC, Indigenous Friendship Centres and other external service providers and community resources more effectively. Provides clients living with substance use/mental illness with emotional and social support, life skills assistance, information, and resources. The PSW works collaboratively with the assigned team to ensure the client’s self-identified goals for recovery and community connection are supported by appropriate services and practices, and are consistent with the values of self-determination /choice and harm reduction. Provides culturally-safe services in a variety of environments dependent on the needs of the client.


  1. Facilitate connections that increase accessibility to Indigenous (First Nation, Métis and Inuit) cultural services.
  2. Establishes a dignifying and purposeful relationship with the client, contacting and getting to know the client as a unique individual, and clarifying the role of the Peer Support Worker in relation to the client.
  3. In accordance with a client’s co-created care plans, provides information to clients regarding empowerment, self-help education, practical information, resources, life skills, and demonstrations.
  4. Assists clients with community integration activities, and accompanies clients to a range of community services, and appointments.
  5. Supports an effective connection between community service providers and clients, family members and significant or concerned others involved in the client’s recovery plan.
  6. Shares information within the assigned team regarding the experience of individuals with mental health conditions and/or substance use experiences.
  7. Supports the client to meet individual needs, goals and situational requirements by assisting in the client’s navigation through systems such as health care, government and/or housing services, and supporting their continued progress.
  8. Assists the client towards self-managing all aspects of their life, including their mental wellness, substance use and other health conditions by such methods as sharing information and lived experience perspective, practical problem-solving, and linkages with peer supports and consumer advocacy groups.
  9. Provides supports related to housing including assisting in packing and transporting belongings and furniture and helping the client to set up their household, supporting the client in cleaning, and orienting to and connecting with the local community.
  10. Participates in program planning, development, evaluation and quality improvement activities that facilitate team goal setting, by attending meetings and providing input.
  11. Prepares and maintains written and computerized records and completes other program documentation, including writing progress notes, completing incident reports and ensuring referral forms are completed and sent to appropriate referral programs.
  12. In accordance with a client’s co-created care plan, assists clients with the development of life skills such as maintaining personal hygiene, housekeeping, meal planning and preparation, meeting financial obligations, making and keeping appointments, and interpersonal skills by methods such as demonstrating and modeling appropriate actions.
  13. Distributes medication to clients as per established policy and procedure as assigned.
  14. Maintains an awareness of current community resources including health care services, social, economic, recreational, employment, educational services and resources, First Nations Health Authority services, Métis Nation BC, Indigenous Friendship Centres and other agencies. Utilizes the information to assist clients to access services and problem solve with the client as required.
  15. Ensures a safe and healthy working environment by observing universal precautions and infection control procedures; removing obvious hazards; reporting faulty equipment, accidents, injures, and near misses; and adhering to and enforcing rules, and reporting requirement in accordance with Fraser Health safety policies and procedures.
  16. Participates by providing input in staff meetings, quality improvement initiatives, committees and in-services.
  17. Performs other related duties as assigned.


Education, Training, and Experience:

Two years of lived experience in recovery from substance use or co-occurring substance use and mental health challenges. Lived experience of Indigenous culture and practices.


Training in Peer Support, completion of a Substance Use Counselling or Social Services certificate, and one year of recent related work/peer support experience in substance use, mental health, homelessness or health services navigation, cultural safety and practices in Indigenous community services, or an equivalent combination of education, training and experience.


Current valid Class Five BC Driver’s License and access to personal vehicle for business related purposes, as required.

Skills and Abilities

  • Ability and willingness to share lived experience of substance use or co-occurring substance use and mental illness.


  • Knowledge of diverse Indigenous communities’ social, historical, jurisdictional, and cultural context, and Indigenous views on approaches to health and wellness.


  • Ability to engage clients with a focus on client service and client comforts.


  • Ability to establish and maintain rapport with clients and their families.


  • Knowledge of harm reduction principles and activities.


  • Ability to work with a culturally diverse population.


  • Knowledge of available programs.


  • Knowledge of substance use/mental illness recovery approaches.


  • Ability to communicate effectively, both verbally and in writing.


  • Ability to organize and prioritize.


  • Ability to analyze and problem solve.


  • Ability to model, instruct and teach life skills.


  • Ability to observe and recognize changes in clients.


  • Ability to work independently.


  • Ability to use effective interpersonal skills to establish/maintain effective working relationships with coworkers, the public and other agencies.


  • Ability to promote positive change and independence.


  • Conflict resolution and crisis intervention skills.


  • Physical and mental ability to carry out the duties of the position.


  • Ability to operate related equipment.


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