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Placement Organization: HIPS
Placement Location: Washington D.C.
Eligible Citizenship: American


About: HIPS (formerly named Helping Individual Prostitutes Survive) was founded in 1993 by a coalition of service providers, advocates, and law enforcement officials as an outreach and referral service. HIPS’ mission is to assist female, male, and transgender sex worker, drug users, and people at the margins of access to care in Washington, DC in leading healthy lives.

Utilizing a harm reduction model, HIPS’ programs strive to address the impact that HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted infections, discrimination, poverty, violence and drug use have on the lives of individuals engaging in sex work.

HIPS is a nationally recognized program that meets the needs of sex workers, drug users, and people at the margins of access to care and assist them in their efforts to eliminate the transmission of HIV, increase sexual health, and reduce violence and harm associated with sex work and drug use.

HIPS’ programs serve an estimated 2,000 sex workers a year on the streets and in our drop-in center, providing a full spectrum of programs to address basic & immediate needs, long-term goal setting and life skills development.

Position Overview: HIPS’ Education and Supportive Services (EASS) Department is designed to assist people in reaching and setting goals that assist them in leading healthy lives. Specifically, the program provides walk-in counseling and assistance in crisis to male, female and transgender individuals that are “at the margins.” HIPS Education and Supportive Services Department also houses our CTR, Community Lunch Program and In-House Groups.

The EASS Program Coordinator is responsible for conducting support through individual and group counseling, referrals and linkages to health services and HIV testing to individuals “at the margins” including sex workers, transgender individuals and injection and non-injection drug users. The EASS Program Coordinator will be cross-trained in all aspects of service provision (including but not limited to HIV testing, syringe exchange, intake, crisis counseling, mobile outreach, and group facilitation). S/he will assist the Program Manager with day-to-day program needs and provide direct educational, HIV prevention, and support services to drug users and sex workers. The fellow will also be responsible for coordinating in-house educational opportunities, based on needs identified by our participants. In addition, this person will conceptualize, develop and conduct internal skills building activities and trainings for staff, interns and peer educators.


Direct Service Responsibilities

  • Serve as an HIV tester and counselor
  • Assist participants in making referrals and linkages to social services including shelter, medical care, food banks and drug treatment
  • Assist in coalition and collaboration building with other local service agencies and medical homes
  • Assist in individual counseling sessions around goal setting
  • Assist in materials distribution including syringe exchange and safer sex materials
  • Attend to daily client walk-in requirements including HIV testing, counseling, referrals and syringe exchange

Internal Education Responsibilities

  • Facilitate weekly structured skills building and health education intervention sessions, support groups, and other groups for clients
  • Work in collaboration with the In-House Program Manager to recruit and retain program participants by collecting and incorporating client feedback
  • Coordinate HIPS’ Professional Harm Reduction Series attendees and sessions

General Duties and Responsibilities

  • Manage the scheduling of guest speakers, in-house trainings, and shared office spaces (reception, group rooms, etc.)
  • Maintain participant, outreach and group records including client files, cohort files, group summaries, incentive forms and assessments for assigned groups/shifts
  • Provide participant reception, intake and crisis counseling as needed
  • Attend scheduled supervisor meetings, staff meetings, and trainings
  • Conduct trainings and presentations as assigned
  • Provide administrative support as required
  • Assist in HIPS’ Social Networking and HIV Navigation Program activities
  • Maintain confidential client files

Additional Responsibilities

  • Attend weekly staff meetings to share information and plan program work in team environment
  • As part of a team, share in other organizational responsibilities as required, including serving as a member of the crisis intervention team, general administrative work, and volunteer training and coordination
  • Attend appropriate local, regional and national meetings to seek out current information about HIV prevention, treatment and care, and peer education and to disseminate information about HIPS programs to others


Required Skills and Experience:

  • N/A


Preferred Skills and Experience:

  • Knowledge of the principles, practices and professional standards in the field of social work and harm reduction
  • Skill in individual and/or group counseling, caseload management, motivational interviewing, HIV testing and delivery of direct social services
  • Be able to prioritize and manage multiple tasks simultaneously
  • Possess strong leadership, management, coaching, and organizational skills
  • Capacity to work both independently and part of a team
  • Must be available some nights and weekends
  • Spanish language abilities a plus


Living Conditions: Fellows will be provided with housing, health insurance and a living stipend of $750/month. Fellows will also receive an award of $1500 upon successful completion of the fellowship year. Flights to and from the placement site and all other costs associated with GHC programming are included.