Fun place to work, but new upper managment is terrible
Child Care Worker (Current Employee) – Lignum, VA – June 30, 2016
I have worked here for over 4 years and had a mostly wonderful experience. You are always doing something new. You have several trainings a month which I thought were great. In house management was great very helpful and strong. However, new upper management is messing everything up and making several people feel useless. The hardest part of the day is dealing with the rough child behaviors. The best part of the day is when the kids are being kids and you can just play with them and enjoy .
Direct Care Worker (Former Employee) – Lignum, VA – June 17, 2016
I worked here for 6 months and was ready to quit in my first 2 weeks. My initial supervisor was disrespectful and talked poorly about her employees behind their backs to other staff. This company takes on kids they are not equipped to care for. They claim they don't take on predators or children with conduct disorder but they do have several residents who meet this criteria. Additionally, management doesn't care about the safety of their staff. An example is that two residents in the house I worked in were placed on sharps restriction due to their threats to stab (and one actually stabbed two staff). We requested plastic spoons to minimize the chances of injury. A committee of administrators who don't work in the houses met and decided the risk to staff safety did not justify the cost to purchase plastic spoons. This company only cares about revenue and could care less about the lower level employees' safety, emotional or physical health, or job satisfaction. There are no raises and very little chance of promotions to supervisors. Furthermore, little money is given to purchase activities for the children so staff members are forced to use their own money to purchase activities to keep the children busy. The children come from extensive trauma filled backgrounds only to get retraumatized by the aggression and inappropriate behaviors of their peers. They hold onto kids that are not making progress or are regressing in their progress just to keep the money coming in. If the kids are doing well, the psychiatrist will take them off their meds to make the children's behaviorsmore... come back out to justify the children needing further treatment. This place is extremely unprofessional and many kids do not improve. This is a good place just to get the experience and should only be used as a stepping stone. Many kids are biters and the company refuses to purchase protective gear for the staff because of the cost. Getting time off is like pulling teeth. They often deny leave due to a lack of staffing. Self care is frowned upon. If you get hurt you are still expected to show up for work. The Residential Program Director just tells you "this is part of the job and you are expected to show up regardless".less
Pretty campus, opportunity to gain experience working with children with mental and behavioral problems
No breaks, terrible schedule, 15 hr shifts, very low pay, expensive benefits, no administrative support, negative work environment, dangerous work environment, inconsistent staff, best interests of staff and children not top priority
Child Care Worker (Former Employee) – Lignum, VA 22726 – June 7, 2016
One of the main words that you will hear in the training at ChildHelp is "consistency" - over and over again. Being that they preach this to their staff, it would be okay to expect the same from the management, and other higher-ups. Sadly, this is not the case. Cliques, favoritism among staff and supervisors, and drama is rampant. The clientele are not the picture of innocence that many expect when they walk through the door. However, that being said, no one who works at ChildHelp for at least six months leaves because of the children. There are no pay raises. PTO accumulates quickly. The wrong people get promotions. Grudges are held by management against staff. The clients are not treated with respect, or care for in the way one would hope. When the company gets a heads up that some big wig is coming, or licensure, all new appliances are installed, broken things get fixed, and only the clients who are nearly ready to leave come into contact with anyone important. Only then. I have witnessed newly purchased shower curtains go up, and get taken down, within the same 24 hour time frame. The old one's put back in their place - effective or not. None shift supervisor communicates with the following supervisor effectively. The staff resent each other for not completing the tasks they are supposed to each shift.
Despite this, ChildHelp has some amazing staff that does truly care about the children. They go above and beyond their job descriptions (which are ever changing) to make sure that things go as they should. When these individuals are present, support is alwaysmore... handy. Otherwise... don't worry about having to ask for help - no one will be there to ask.
Snow, Ice, home responsibilities preventing you from coming into work? Get sick and don't have a doctor's note? Have a doctor's note? Be prepared to be written up. Even if there are multiple feet of snow on the road.. or trees down.. you get the picture. Oh, and if you're at work when it is snowing? If the next shift doesn't come in to relieve you, you can't leave. That's right.. you cannot leave.
Turn over rate is high. Not even management stays long. Director's change frequently, as well.
Training lasts a week. No specialized training in the various disorders any of the clients may have. Basics only.less
Some great people, PTO, Clients
Management, Staff, Clients, Poor Communication, High Turn over rate
Childcare Worker (Former Employee) – Beaumont, CA – June 2, 2016
The job consists of working with at-risk kids. The kids come with behavioral problems and tend to be very violent. The atmosphere you work in has cameras throughout the facilities and outside. Expect to be under multiple investigations with CPS and Community Care Licensing. It comes with the territory because of the type of environment you work in. They rarely give raises and the benefits they offer are too expensive. There are no real benefits in working in the environment besides the opportunity to help at-risk children. Also some employees in Supervisory position are well protected by Administration even though they should not be working there.
Typically the job is helping troubled kids. That is the good part. If you are not in it for the kids this is not a good job. The management seems to despise the hard working people who try to help these abused and neglected kids. There has not been a pay raise in over 9 years. No COLA, nothing. Direct care staff are constantly being threatened by the kids and physically abused. That is to be expected because these kids are striking at the people closest to them.
The management seems like they are running a factory. Their constant effort is to get more kids so they can get more money from the government. Employees are seen as a liability not the priceless asset that they are. If you can close your eyes to what goes on in the administration offices then you can really enjoy this type of work. You really do make a difference in the lives of these kids. But if you cannot stand injustice and do not like being used like a slave then this is not the place for you.
Free lunch. Great cook!
No appreciation, minimum pay with no raises, no retirement, nothing except as mandated by law.
Therapist (Former Employee) – Lignum, VA – June 14, 2015
The history and mission of Childhelp is incredibly good but somewhere, in Virginia, it has gone all wrong over the past several years (this is 2015) particularly in the past year and I hear that 10 or more of the very wonderful Primary Therapists that CH had before the current management came on board left within weeks of each other due to the intolerable conditions set forth in the clinical department. Now, the census is down to 20-something kids when we used to help 60-something. It is heartbreaking as it was once a fantastic place to work and for kids to heal.
National Child Abuse Hotline Clinical Supervisor (Former Employee) – Woodland Hills, CA – March 8, 2015
This was an interesting, solitary job where I was stationed in a small room with several phones where calls came in from all over the country. It was for people who had experienced child abuse or were at that moment. I learned a lot about crisis intervention while there.
Highly skilled in supervising and interacting with children positively
Child Care Worker (Current Employee) – Beaumont, CA – November 5, 2014
Highly skilled in supervising and interacting with children positively • Well versed in providing affection and safety to children • Able to prepare hygienic meals • Adept at directing children in eating, resting and personal cleanliness • Proven record of handling private issues properly • Demonstrated ability to provide proper direction of children in their daily routine • Substantial knowledge of giving out medicine to children
Fun place to work at if you were invested in the needs of the children :)
Direct Care Staff (Former Employee) – Lignum, VA – August 20, 2014
A typical day would be coming into work and checking your company e-mail for upcoming training or important memos. Then reading the log from the evening before to have an idea of how the children were the night before your shift. Then going onto the floor to help with the transition from the group home to breakfast and then to school. During school the job duties for the direct care staff would be to help with behavioral issues along with their educational needs. Focus was placed more on meeting their behavioral and emotional needs during the school day. In addition to helping with the children and their specific needs direct care would also help assist the teachers with each child's educational needs by means of either providing one on one support or playing an active role in the lesson plan. Management was constantly changing there seemed to be lack of consistency between the village and supervisor of each group home. They did offer excellent therapies such as art, library time, equine, recreation, earned outings within the community, and nature walks with the Chaplin who worked in the village. I liked that they had a faith based perspective along with a therapeutic sense to the village with the counselors and therapists who worked with each child on a weekly basis. The hardest part of the job for me was the lack of consistency between the the veteran staff and the staff that was new and fresh from training. The was a disconnect between the two groups of staff for some staff who had been their for some time did not necessarily focused on the over well-being of the child. Somemore... staff became to complacent in their job and viewed the children more like their own ( what they would do if it were their child) instead of focusing more on their individual needs, such as that they were there because of emotional and or behavioral issues, therefore, needed a compassionate approach. The most enjoyable part of the job was doing activities with the children and showing them that someone cared for them by being involved in what they were needing and wanting to help them through what they were feeling as well. Weekend outings where a great way for the children to still be a part of their community as well as help them work on developing and implementing social skills. Overall, the founders of the company had a great vision for the village and how they wanted it to be child focused!less
free breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner for staff, faith based practices, sunday services at their chapel
expensive health care benefits, working with burned out staff, no support for burned out staff, the inconsistency of management, division of programs within the village
Childcare Worker (Former Employee) – Beaumont, CA – July 2, 2013
I would drive and get a couple kids for school. We get to school do school work, take kids for pe, and out for play time on the play ground. Get lunch watch a movie and do some crafts. Some days in there I would have to take one of the kids for a small walk due to if he/she gets overwelmed or angry. I have learned how to understand the problems the kids have and understand that they cant handle it like any other kids. My boss would come into help if we couldn't get the kids to calm down. I also had another co worker in the class that would help out with certain situations or if I can handle it he would help the teacher. The hardest part of my job was trying to stay calm and not get mad when they act out and trying to find them if they would run. I really enjoyed doing crafts with the kids and watching them do it themselves.