The Developmental Service Worker program trains students to provide support to children and adults with developmental, learning and/or physical disabilities and disorders. People with disabilities increasingly participate in valued community roles, creating the need for qualified workers to provide support in everyday activities at home or in school.

This program includes classroom-based studies and on-the-job training through placements at a variety of social service agencies.

Main Duties

Developmental Service Workers perform some or all of the following duties:

  • Interview clients to obtain case history and background information
  • Assess clients’ relevant skill strengths and deficits
  • Assist clients to sort out options and develop plans of action while providing necessary support and assistance
  • Assist clients in locating and utilizing community resources including legal, medical and financial assistance, housing, employment, transportation, assistance with moves, day care and other referral services
  • Prepare intake reports
  • Counsel clients living in group homes and half-way houses, supervise their activities and assist in pre-release and release planning
  • Participate in the selection and admission of clients to appropriate programs
  • Assess and investigate eligibility for social benefits
  • Meet with clients to assess their progress, give support and discuss any difficulties or problems
  • Refer clients to other social services
  • Advise and aid recipients of social assistance and pensions
  • Provide crisis intervention and emergency shelter services
  • Implement and organize the delivery of specific services within the community
  • Implement life skills workshops, substance abuse treatment programs, behaviour management programs, youth services programs and other community and social service programs under the supervision of social services or health care professionals
  • Assist in evaluating the effectiveness of treatment programs by tracking clients’ behavioural changes and responses to interventions
  • Maintain contact with other social service agencies and health care providers involved with clients to provide information and obtain feedback on clients’ overall progress
  • Co-ordinate the volunteer activities of human service agencies, health care facilities and arts and sports organizations
  • Maintain program statistics for purposes of evaluation and research.
  • May supervise social service support workers and volunteers.