Harm Reduction Response Team Systems Navigator - Victoria

AVI Health & Community Services (AVI) is a multi-disciplinary community based organization, providing HIV, hepatitis C and harm reduction services out of 5 locations across Vancouver Island. AVI provides services to people living with HIV and hepatitis C and harm reduction clients. We work within a social justice and health promotion framework – ensuring equity and access to services for all – and from a harm reduction perspective, understanding that clients are the best sources of knowledge regarding the services and supports they need.  

At the core of what we do is our ability, and commitment to, creating meaningful connections. between clients and staff, between peers, between staff members, between organizations, between communities, and between funders and impactful programs. AVI provides comprehensive, accessible and effective education, prevention, care, treatment and support services to residents of Vancouver Island with offices in Victoria, the Westshore, Nanaimo, the Comox Valley and Campbell River.  For more info see www.avi.org

Join our supportive, dedicated and client-centred team in promoting the health, dignity and well-being of all people affected by HIV, HCV and substance use by delivering sex-positive and harm reduction-based education, prevention and/or support services.



The Harm Reduction Systems Navigator will provide support to individuals to identify and provide short term counselling, psychosocial and health-related supports and referral services to individuals struggling with substance use, mental health.  The Harm Reduction Systems Navigator will be responsible for supporting individuals with supportive case management services that are offered within a harm reduction and health promotion framework and works in consultation with AVI clients to assess needs and develop client directed goals. The Harm Reduction Systems Navigator will assess situations and provide psychological crisis support, assessment, information, referral, advocacy, and when possible transportation to the next step in treatment.

Our Victoria Harm Reduction Response Team works on the territories of the Ləkʷəŋən peoples (Esquimalt and Songhees nations).


  1. Identifies clients who are seeking access to support and referrals.
  2. Provides outreach and support in a variety of settings including parks, encampments, shelters, drop in centers, people’s homes, community services and to people living outside and/or in temporary and fixed Overdose Prevention sites and other areas of Victoria
  3. Provide support for people in the community that are experiencing mental health crises. 
  4. Provides outreach-based supports in the community including accompaniment to appointments, home visits, and advocacy in accordance with the established care plans.
  5. Uses brief assessment, crisis response, and counselling skills to help meet immediate, basic needs and make appropriate referrals to other health and support services.
  6. Provides advocacy to clients by working with them on issues such as housing, medical, legal and other support agencies.
  7. Liaises between various AVI team’s members to support participants and assist with collaborative and proactive problem-solving as needed.
  8. Conducts individual or group information sessions, and develops educational materials to meet clients’ needs, as required.
  9. Provides information related to harm reduction, HIV/AIDS, and hepatitis C to other service providers, such as government and community-based agencies, and within medical and educational settings.
  10. Provides program development and staffing support
  11. Maintains both paper and electronic confidential client files.
  12. Fosters safety by following protocols related to violence prevention and critical incidents such as overdose and other medical emergencies.
  13. Engages in planning, evaluation, reporting, and program development as directed.
  14. Performs other duties as assigned.


Education, Training, and Experience:

University degree in Health or Social Services, Counselling, Social Work, Psychology, etc.), or equivalent combination of education and experience.


A valid Class 5 BC Driver’s License and use of own vehicle for work purposes.


The Harm Reduction Response Team Systems Navigator will have a minimum of four year’s relevant work experience and will demonstrate the following minimum requirements:


  • Direct service delivery and advocacy experience with community-based and provincial support services and systems (financial aid, housing, healthcare, justice system, etc.).
  • Demonstrated skills, experience, and commitment to harm reduction principles and practices.
  • Demonstrated ability to establish respectful rapport, provide support and advocate for a diverse range of individuals who are actively using substances and living with significant barriers to their health and well-being.
  • Demonstrated empathic observer invested in respectful relationship-building.

Demonstrated skills, experience, and knowledge in the areas of harm reduction/health promotion practices, safer sex and safer drug use practices, addictions, safer sex, sex work, HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis C, poverty, trauma and mental health.

  • Demonstrated practice of social justice, cultural humility, trauma-informed and public health approaches and models of social support and health care.
  • Experience managing hostile interactions, utilizing non-violent communication and diffusing techniques.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication and interpersonal skills and demonstrated commitment to working within a collaborative team approach.
  • Organized and able to triage crises, urgent demands and complex situations.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of group process and facilitation techniques
  • Understanding of health promotion and client-centered/harm reduction focused models of social support and health care
  • Experience with overdose response, including administration of naloxone, is an asset.


  • Commitment to honor local indigenous communities and to recognize the ongoing impacts of colonial violence.
  • Committed to social justice, equity, anti-racism and decolonization. 
  • Practiced advocacy skills and ability to effectively navigate complex and convoluted systems access requirements of various health and social supports (eg. income assistance, housing, healthcare, addictions treatment options, etc).
  • Physical ability to carry out the duties of the position and operate related equipment.
  • Ability to work effectively as part of a multidisciplinary team and to carry out independent responsibilities without supervision.
  • Demonstrated leadership skills
  • Strong communication skills (verbally, written documentation, etc).
  • Demonstrated time management and personal organization skills to effectively support a full caseload.
  • Case management skills including advocacy and referral
  • Ability to anticipate and identify challenges and proactively address through collaborative problem-solving.
  • Crisis intervention skills with a diverse population facing significant structural barriers.
  • Ability to problem solve with creativity, flexibility, assertiveness and a ‘cool head’ in dealing with complex issues.
  • Ability to document and report
  • Ability to work outdoors during all types weather in all seasons.


  • Pay: $28.56/hour to start with stepped increases based on your seniority with AVI. (Pay for this role is based on the BCGEU paygrid 38)
  • Hours and Schedule: This is a full time position, 37.5 hours per week. Schedule: Monday to Friday, 12 pm to 8 pm.
  • Term: September 19, 2022 (or later if needed by successful candidate) to March 31, 2023. 
  • Partial Return of Incumbent Line: Please Note: 19 hours of this 37.5 hour position are linked to a leave, as such they are only available Until Return of Incumbent or March 31, 2023, whichever comes first.  Should these hours be reclaimed by the Incumbent to this position, it will become a part time position at AVI.
  • Union: AVI is a union environment under the Collective Agreement: HEABC & Health Services & Support Community Subsector Association 2019-2022 and this role is a BCGEU union position.
  • Benefits: This position will be eligible for extended health, life and AD&D coverage after 488 hours with AVI.  AVI pays for the entire cost of the plan on behalf of its staff.
  • Pension: If you are already a member of the Municipal Pension Plan (MPP), you can continue with them at AVI immediately.  If not, after 488 hours, you will be eligible to join the Municipal Pension Plan. At this time, AVI contributes an additional 9.31% towards your pension account.
  • Other Perks: This position gets 6% vacation (equivalent to 3 weeks), receives a paid day off for every Stat Holiday and Easter Monday and accrues a Sick Bank of 6.9%.  Sick and Vacation Days are both available to be used after your first 488 hours at AVI.


To apply, please send your resume and cover letter to jobs@avi.org by 5 pm on September 6, 2022.

AVI is committed to equity and diversity and we strongly encourage applications from, but not limited to, folks who identify as Indigenous Persons, persons of colour, racialized, persons living with a disability, persons who use/d drugs, persons with experience of sex work, persons who live with HIV and/or hepatitis C, and persons representing diverse genders and sexualities.

As AVI is a union environment, internal staff will be prioritized in the hiring process.

Accommodations are available on request for candidates taking part in all aspects of the selection process.

We would like to thank all those that apply but only those selected for an interview will be contacted.