Position: Benefits SOAR Specialist
Location: New York, NY
Reports to: Benefits Service Coordinator
Hours: Full-time, 40 hours per week, late evenings & some weekends required.
About Jericho Project
Jericho Project is a nationally-acclaimed nonprofit ending homelessness at its roots by enabling homeless individuals and families to attain quality housing, employment and mental and physical health services. The 37-year-old nonprofit serves over 2,500 individuals, including 700 veterans, annually. Jericho has been a key partner in New York City’s initiative to end veterans’ homelessness, and is leading bold, innovative strategies to do the same for families and young adults.
Our programs touch four cornerstones of a person’s life: housing, employment, wellness and family stability. We create a culture of “moving on” through a foundation of housing and supportive services provided by expert program specialists and case managers.
We have over 550 units of supportive housing including 9 residences in the Bronx, Harlem, and Astoria, as well as scatter-site apartments throughout NYC.
About the Position
Jericho Project is seeking an experienced and driven Benefits/SOAR Specialist for the Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program. The Benefits/SOAR Specialist will be responsible for facilitating Veterans’ acquisition of benefits including SSI, SSDI, Medicaid, Medicare, SNAP, Unemployment Insurance, Access-A-Ride, VA disability, and other benefits as needed. The Benefits/SOAR Specialist counsels Veterans on the impact of employment on their benefits with a supportive lens to maximize income, maintain access to health insurance, and foster independence. The Benefits/SOAR Specialist will utilize the SOAR model to assist Veterans with obtaining SSI and/or SSDI benefits. SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR) is a model that helps individuals experiencing or at-risk for homelessness who have mental illness and/or a co-occurring substance use disorder or other medical impairments for the purpose of expediting the SSI/SSDI application process. This position involves multiple priorities and some field work. Candidates must be self-starters with the skills and energy to work with high-need Veterans in the community.
➢ Responsible for linkages to mainstream government cash and non-cash benefits as well as health coverage including referrals, service coordination, advocacy and direct application assistance.
➢ Conduct eligibility screenings and run data reports in AWARDS to identify Veterans that may be eligible for additional benefits.
➢ Coach clients about their benefits and income options, including the impact of employment on benefits in order to maximize income, maintain access to health care, and foster independence.
➢ Serve as the appointed representative before the Social Security Administration using the SOAR process for filing disability claims.
➢ Filing initial claims and/or appeals on behalf of clients using the Social Security
Administration’s online application system - which includes additional interviews with clients and other sources, gathering medical records, writing SOAR Medical Summary Reports, and obtaining other evidence for the claim.
➢ Facilitate necessary appointments to medical doctors, psychiatrists, or other specialists to obtain evidence to support the disability application.
➢ Accompany clients and/or collaborate with SSVF team and Veteran Peer Mentors to ensure an escort is available to attend claim-related appointments with doctors and other benefits appointments both virtually and in-person as needed.
➢ Develop collaborative relationships with SSA, DDS and other benefit administration personnel to increase positive outcomes consistent with organizational policies and practices.
➢ Document services provided, outcomes, and other data in AWARDS and utilizing Microsoft Excel.
➢ Bachelor’s degree in human services or a closely related field.
➢ Commitment to the SOAR process and the Housing First approach.
➢ Experience working in homelessness, substance abuse, mental health and/or trauma settings.
➢ Excellent writing skills required; cursory knowledge of medical and psychiatric terminology and brief-writing or medical summary-writing experience preferred.
➢ Possess strong engagement and interpersonal skills; experience providing client- centered and trauma-informed advocacy.
➢ Strong organizational and computer skills including mastery of Microsoft Excel.
➢ SOAR Certification preferred; willingness to obtain SOAR certification required.
➢ Knowledge of the impact of employment and earned income on benefits preferred.
➢ Understanding of the SSI/SSDI application process and familiarity with Social Security Administration’s Blue Book listings preferred.
➢ Experience working with Veterans/military preferred.
➢ Veterans are strongly encouraged to apply.
Salary is commensurate with experience. Jericho Project offers a comprehensive benefits package.
How to Apply:
Interested applicants must submit a resume and cover letter with salary requirements to:
Human Resources Department
Job Code: Benefits Specialist- SSVF
245 W. 29th Street, Suite 902
New York, NY 10001
No Phone Calls Please.
Jericho Project is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate in its hiring practices and, in order to build the strongest possible workforce, actively seeks a diverse applicant pool. www.jerichoproject.org
Staff are required to work on site 1-3 days each week
Jericho ProjectNote: All in-field staff are provided PPE equipment Staff are required to work on site 1-3 days each week