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Targeted Youth Support Worker

Dorset Council
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Sturminster Newton, Dorset, United Kingdom
£26,421 - £30,296 GBP yearly

This role will be responsible for the delivery of a targeted youth offer in localities based in West Dorset, Chesil (Weymouth & Portland) or North Dorset, working alongside others, and particularly focused on the most vulnerable young people.

The post holder will:

  • Undertake 1:1, group, detached and outreach work with young people
  • Be an advocate for young people, supporting colleagues to understand adolescence, and how to engage with young people
  • work collectively with colleagues across all localities to support the development of our approach to edge of care and residential services
  • develop strong, positive working relationships with a range of colleagues, schools, voluntary and community sector organisations and partner agencies to support the delivery of good outcomes for young people and their families and support continuous development
About you:

The postholder will have a QCF Level 3 Diploma in Youth work or equivalent and have experience of youth work in a youth work setting.

You’ll be aware of best practice and effective interventions, including evidence-based programmes in working with vulnerable young people and contextual safeguarding and be able to provide advice around vulnerable young people within the locality on issues such as (but not limited to):

  • Contextual safeguarding/exploitation/county lines
  • Anti-social behaviour
  • Inclusion and participation in education
  • Social action

You’ll have an awareness of legislation, social policy, and key issues including child safeguarding requirements/procedures and be able to demonstrate the following:

  • excellent communication and listening skills
  • the ability to build trusting and respectful relationships
  • initiative, enthusiasm and motivation
  • tact and sensitivity
  • patience and resilience
  • a non-judgemental attitude
  • good organisational and planning skills
  • good negotiating skills

What’s in it for you:

Are you seeking a rewarding career in Children’s Services?

Join our exceptional teams in children’s services, where you’ll be fully supported and appreciated throughout your career - whether you’re newly qualified, or an experienced practitioner. In Dorset, we are dedicated to fostering an environment where every child can thrive, and we want our colleagues to do the same.


At the heart of our program is a commitment to support outcomes that matter – fostering environments where children, young people, and families not only stay together but thrive. We're dedicated to providing the essential help they need, ensuring they are surrounded by the support of their family network, and creating safe spaces both inside and outside their homes.

What sets us apart is our unwavering dedication to ensuring children in care and care leavers find stable, loving homes. This isn't just a job; it's a chance to make a lasting impact on the future of those who need it most.

We take immense pride in leading the way nationally, pioneering groundbreaking initiatives that have garnered recognition from the government. Join a team of dedicated professionals in Children's Services who, in recent months and years, have set new standards in their commitment to the well-being of children and families.

Here at Dorset Council, you won't just be an employee – you'll be a vital contributor to a legacy of positive change. Be a part of a community that values your skills, appreciates your passion, and recognises the difference you can make. Join us in creating a brighter future for children, young people, and families. Your journey towards meaningful work starts here.

In July this year, the Department for Education officially announced the Families First for Children Pathfinder.  Dorset has been recognised for the fantastic work with children, young people and families taking place by being selected to be one of only three initial pathfinder sites nationally, testing the delivery of key reforms across the sector.  This is a fantastic opportunity and comes with central government grant funding and support which recognises the scale and ambition of the work we need to carry out. 

Our focus is on supporting families to meet the needs of their children and keeping children at home where it is safe to do so.  You’ll find a variety of exciting challenges, working with our children, families, and partners, in a workplace that inspires you to grow professionally and personally. 

As part of our model, we have developed multi-agency locality teams bringing together colleagues from across Early Help, Children's Social Care, Educational Psychology, SEND and Inclusion services under the leadership of Heads of Locality and Strategy. 

We also have truly exciting initiatives.  Some examples are:

  • the Pineapple Project that provides safe havens in Weymouth to help to keep young women safer when they are outside of their family home using the principles of community guardianship. 
  • Safeguarding Families Together; embedding specialist multi-disciplinary professionals within teams and working ‘whole family’.  After successful pilots in Weymouth, Portland and Dorchester the project is due to be rolled out across all localities
  • In the East of the county, the first two family hubs (with more locations planned) provide visible, appealing and welcoming spaces for families to access help and support from Dorset Council and partner services.

Join us and be part of our exceptional Children's Services team, recently recognised as Good with Outstanding Leadership by Ofsted. This is not just a job; it's an extraordinary opportunity to empower children and help them reach their full potential.  With Pathfinder, we will be changing the way Social Care and how working with families is approached in Dorset and helping to shape this across the country.

As a Youth Support Worker here in Dorset, you’ll truly make a difference to the lives of children and young people in our beautiful county.

We prioritise your wellbeing by offering access to talking therapies, a network of Mental Health Champions, and workshops facilitated by our dedicated Employee Wellbeing Team.

You’ll join a forward-thinking service, where you’ll be encouraged to think creatively, question how we do things, and devise new, innovative approaches through our ‘Diagonal Slice’ initiative – our Children's Services' employee forum.

Our innovative model of working, Dorset Children Thrive, will support you to be part of a service that:

  • Puts children and families at the heart of everything we do
  • Focuses on ‘getting it right first time’ by providing early help
  • Makes services easily accessible for all
  • Develops a skilled, supported and confident workforce
  • Provides quality and efficient services that meet the highest standards
  • Measures success by how we have made life better for children and young people

Find out more about Children’s Services in Dorset: Jobs in Children's Services - Dorset Council.

What our people say:

“Dorset is a great place for children to thrive - I am very proud to be part of an organisation that recognises the strengths of our staff and the creativity we have in achieving great outcomes for our children, young people and families.”

“It was great to feel listened to about the big issues and developments within Children’s Services”.

“I am proud of the service I work in for their commitment to children and young people, working hard to collaborate with colleagues and agencies to achieve good outcomes.”

Further Information

For an informal discussion about the role, please contact us at [email protected]

This post involves working with children and/or vulnerable adults and/or having access to significant information about them. It will be subject to a Disclosure and Barring Service check. See our policy on the employment of ex-offenders.

See our policy on safeguarding children and young people.

We are proud to be a Disability Confident Employer. We offer an interview to everyone who declares a disability and meets the essential criteria for the role.

We are keen to make our interviews accessible. Let us know on your job application if you have a disability and need any reasonable adjustments.

We also look for applicants who share our commitment to our behaviours. We will ask you to evidence when you have demonstrated them as part of the selection process.


Friends & Family Referral Scheme

The friends and family referral scheme applies to this post. If an employee recommended this post to you, please make sure to mention them when applying.

Employees can share this advert by using the button links alongside the job title.

Relocation expenses package

A generous relocation package is payable, of which up to £8,000 (of HMRC eligible elements) are free of tax. We can offer you help to move whether you are looking to buy or rent, depending on your circumstances.

Our package includes:

  • an initial advance of up to £2,500 payable when you start
  • help towards fees associated with buying/selling (up to £6,500)
  • an option to receive help towards your rent or mortgage in the first two years

About Us

Dorset Council: A great place to work

We’re passionate about making Dorset a great place to live, work and visit. Working for us should be no exception.

At Dorset Council we:

  • provide more than 450 services to over 300,000 residents
  • have ambitious aspirations
  • are excited about our future
  • care about Dorset and all the people who live here
  • know that all roles make a difference and that our employees are key to our success

You will:

  • have access to a range of employee benefits
  • be part of an organisation that supports each other to grow and succeed
  • have access to range of training opportunities which will help with your personal development and career progression

We are challenging ourselves to become a more diverse and inclusive organisation. We recognise that recruitment and inclusion of individuals with diverse skills, perspectives and backgrounds will bring real strength to the council and our communities. We have a commitment to equality and welcome applications from everyone.

We are proud to be a Disability Confident Employer. We offer an interview to everyone who declares a disability and meets the essential criteria for the role.

We are keen to make our interviews accessible. Let us know on your job application if you have a disability and need any reasonable adjustments.

We also look for applicants who share our commitment to our behaviours. We will ask you to evidence when you have demonstrated them as part of the selection process.

If appointed, the personal information we collect from you will be shared with Cifas who will use it to prevent fraud, other unlawful or dishonest conduct, malpractice, and other seriously improper conduct. If any of these are detected, you could be refused certain services or employment. Your personal information will also be used to verify your identity. Further details of how your information will be used by us and Cifas, and your data protection rights, can be found at

This role is UK based and we will need to establish your Right to Work as part of the appointment process.

We use generic job descriptions and person specifications. This means the job title on any attachments may differ from the job title in the advert. We may provide specific information in a context statement if relevant.