SLS: David's Harp Program Assistant with Cascadia Behavioral Health (2022-23 school year)

Open Opportunity


Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare delivers whole health care – integrated mental health and addiction services, primary care, and housing – to support our communities and provides hope and wellbeing for those we serve. We envision a community where everyone benefits from whole health care, experiences well-being, and has a self-directed, connected life.

This position is one of the options for Portland State's Student Leaders for Service program. Please apply to the Student Leaders for Service program to express interest in this opportunity. To access the application to apply for SLS for the the 2022-23 school year, please visit

The David's Harp Program Assistant is responsible for day-to-day support of activities, events, and outings at the David’s Harp day treatment program at CBHC. David’s Harp offers a daytime, clubhouse setting where adults with mental illness can engage in socialization and skill-building activities. This position supports Cascadia’s mission because it supports David’s Harp clients to achieve the highest level of independence in their community.

By having a SLS participant serving in this role, David's Harp can provide continuity of care in our client's lives by knowing they can consistently count on the the student being there. The client and SLS participant build rapport in direct service work. David's Harp also benefits from having the SLS serve as a lead volunteer, taking on a leadership position to hire and train other volunteers.

David's Harp Program Assistant Roles/Responsibilities:

  • Encourage and model appropriate participation in group activities, events, and community outings.
  • Offer individual assistance to clients participating in activities at the request of clinical staff.
  • Treat all clients, visitors, and team members with respect and dignity.
  • Assist clinical staff with supervising and supporting clients while on outings in the community.
  • Assist clients in completing daily chores and community responsibilities.
  • Comply with the site’s safety policies and procedures.
  • Report witnessed or reported allegations of client abuse or neglect immediately to the program manager or designated lead staff.
  • Assist with data entry, electronic records maintenance, filing, emails and postings, and communicating with staff, board members, and community partners.
  • Answer site phone lines and direct calls to appropriate staff members when necessary.
  • Coordinate and schedule medical transportation to site. 
  • Provide program information verbally which may include communication with community organizations and potential clients.
  • Attend daily stand up meetings when on site and monthly staff/volunteer meeting.
  • Perform other related duties as required.
At the beginning of the term, we have most students begin with observing and assisting group activities on site, to provide opportunities for students to build therapeutic relationships with members. As student leaders become more confident and experienced in their roles, they will have opportunities to independently plan and facilitate group activities for members. Due to the nature of the work at this site, program staff are always present and available to offer assistance when clients are here. There are also opportunities available for SLS members to take on leadership roles in an administrative capacity. In past years, SLS members have taken on leadership roles by training new program volunteers and planning fundraising events. SLS participants are encouraged to advocate for themselves with their supervisor to determine what level of guided support they need to be successful.

This position is expected to be an in-person role for the 2022-23 school year.

Skills and Knowledge Required:

  • General understanding of cultural and age-related differences and a strong appreciation and respect for these differences.
  • Ability to communicate effectively with staff, volunteers, clients and the general public.
  • Ability to maintain confidential information and records.
  • Ability to understand the need for and set professional boundaries.
Preferred Qualifications: Completion of coursework in a behavioral sciences field or lived experience of mental illness. An existing understanding or willingness to thoroughly learn about the David’s Harp program and its role within Cascadia and the broader community.

Application, Onboarding, and Training process:
  1. Student will apply for position through SLS.
  2. Cascadia BHC will follow SLS process and interview SLS applicant.
  3. If approved, student will be asked to:
    a. Participate in a Department of Human Services background check.
    b. Attend Mandatory Abuse Reporting. These are pre-scheduled and are 2 hours in length. Cascadia can be flexible with student schedule and may provide a tailored orientation for student. Many trainings can be conducted online.
    c. David’s Harp Program Manager will provide additional training regarding the scope of the program and specific tasks required. Students will also be required to attend a staff/volunteer meeting that occurs monthly.
Benefits of this Positions: Individual will gain the ability to:
  1. Model appropriate participation in group activities, events, and community outings
  2. Appreciate individuals from a different culture, background, stage in life from one’s own
  3. Support individuals in their quest to leading independent lives
  4. Define state of Oregon mandatory abuse reporting guidelines
  5. Practice administrative tasks
  6. Coordinate and schedule medical-related activities
  7. Apply public speaking technique to a variety of stakeholders and audience sizes
SLS Students would also have access to Cascadia’s learning management system, a professional development suite of online courses, as well as the opportunity to attend live equity, diversity & inclusion trainings and mental health trainings, such as Diagnosis Training Series. As a Wellness Program Leader, you would contribute to the growth and development of a community wide program.

The SLS member would report to Amy Driscoll, David's Harp program manager. Amy is able to provide a monthly individual supervision, and we typically have weekly team meetings as well. Students also have opportunities to receive training and clinical observation experience from our Peer Wellness Specialist, Counselor, and other program volunteers.

Location & Transportation: The service would primarily take place at our David's Harp location, at 11261 NE Knott St., Portland OR, 97220.  Public transit is available via Blue/Green MAX lines and connecting to buses 19, 22, 23, or 87. Travel time via public transport is about one hour from PSU. 

There may be some opportunities for students to work remotely on projects that do not involve client protected health information (i.e. fundraising projects).

Schedule Available: Minimum of 4 hours per week. David's Harp programming typically takes place between 8:30-4:30 M-F. The days/times of the week within that time frame can be flexible based on student schedules. There are some opportunities for students to accrue a portion of their service after hours by completing work in the community garden or participating in special events/projects.

Cascadia strives to keep people at the heart of everything we do: the individuals we serve, our colleagues and team members, our health partners, and the community around us. Wellness is realized when we focus our attention on the whole person through a trauma-informed, person-first approach to care. We are committed to providing a safe and welcoming environment for everyone in our community while enhancing our employees’ ability to bring their best, most authentic selves to the work they do. Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare is invested in creating meaningful opportunities to engage employees at all organizational levels in the work toward racial equity.  Cascadia recognizes that racism, particularly anti-black racism, is a public health crisis.  By focusing on racial equity and anti-racism efforts, we influence both the culture and performance of the organization to meet the needs of our clients and employees.  We commit to being culturally affirming and responsive; to implement recruitment, hiring, and promotional practices that move Cascadia to more closely reflect and represent the communities we serve; to challenge ourselves to address health disparities and remove barriers to whole health care, and to hold ourselves accountable at all levels of leadership in implementing policy and practices put forth in this regard.

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