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Psychosocial Counsellor - JRS Thailand (Urban Refugee Project)

Position:     Psychosocial Counsellor
Project:    Urban Refugee Project
Location:    Bangkok, Thailand         
Reports to:    Project Director
Starting date:    Immediately 
Contract duration:       1 year (renewable)


The Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) is an international non-governmental organisation with a mission to accompany, serve, and advocate for the rights of refugees and forcibly displaced people.  The organisation was founded in November 1980 and has a presence in over 50 countries. JRS undertakes services at national and regional levels with the support and guidance of an international office in Rome. The style of JRS service is human and spiritual, working in situations of greatest need, seeking the long-term wellbeing of refugees and displaced persons, while not neglecting their immediate or urgent needs. JRS offers opportunities to a wide variety of staff, local and international, while maintaining a realistic and localised scheme of salary/stipend, insurance, etc.  


In Thailand, JRS manages five programmes spread throughout urban and rural areas serving refugees, asylum seekers and forcibly displaced persons. JRS Thailand has field offices in Bangkok and Mae Hong Son. The main areas of work include education, psycho-social services, livelihoods, emergency assistance and advocacy. For more information about JRS in Asia Pacific and Thailand, visit: 


Project Description: 
Although half of the world’s refugees live in urban areas such as Bangkok, the vast majority of assistance is focused on refugees living in camps. Guided by Pedro Arrupe’s vision for JRS – to go where no one else is working and serve the most forgotten – JRS Thailand is dedicated to serving, accompanying and advocating for urban refugees, asylum seekers, and migrants. Established in 1990, the Urban Refugee Programme in Bangkok supports urban refugees and asylum seekers through emergency and casework assistance, psychosocial counselling, and community capacity building. There are about 5,100 urban refugees, asylum seekers registered with UNHCR in Bangkok (as of October 2019), of which 17% are asylum seekers and 83% are refugees. The majority of asylum seekers are from South East Asia, South Asia, the Middle East, and Africa. Because many refugees have fled violence and conflict in their home countries, JRS is committed to providing psychosocial support services to those who have experienced traumatic or extremely stressful experiences. Clients who are recent arrivals in Thailand or whose applications for resettlement have been rejected are given priority access to counselling by JRS.


The Psychosocial Counsellor will work with the Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Services (MHPSS) team  to improve and implement JRS psychosocial support services; individual counselling, support group activity, community outreach activity etc. for asylum seekers and refugees in Bangkok and and the five adjacent provinces (Nakhon Pathom, Pathum Thani, Nonthaburi, Samut Prakan and Samut Sakhon). The Psychosocial Counsellor is part of a project team composed of the reception, casework and MHPSS unit. The counselor reports to the Project Director.


Psychosocial Support
• To supervise and ensure quality of psychosocial and counseling activities with urban refugees
• To provide comprehensive mental health counseling, psychosocial support and case management for clients who have experienced trauma, torture, sexual and gender-based violence, depression or mental illness
• To conduct mental health assessment as part of counseling
• To provide psychosocial and counseling support to refugees in individual and group support counselling
• To maintain a supportive and professional relationship with clients, avoiding emotional involvement and focusing on approach of empowerment
• To refer clients for further psychosocial or psychiatric assistance when they require special care
• To develop and implement psychosocial assessment tools to monitor client progress
• To facilitate psychosocial community and group activities for the improvement of psychosocial well-being among urban asylum seekers.
• To facilitate and deliver training workshops
• To coordinate closely with caseworkers in managing vulnerable cases
• To support and provide training to other staff members to enhance their understanding of the psychosocial needs of urban refugees in Bangkok, and strengthen their capacity to integrate psychosocial support into the management of cases


Managing the work of JRS at the field level
• To conduct mental health training for community and partner organisations, in coordination with the Project Director
• Train and supervise a psychosocial community assistant, to successfully deliver community outreach activities
• To safeguard the vision, identity, and unity of JRS at the project level
• To know and understand well JRS policies and to implement them at the project level
• To abide by JRS personnel policy and standards for staff
• To implement relevant aspects of the project according to the approved proposal
• To manage resources of the project, data collection/ record
• To analyse the needs of the refugees and to suggest new initiatives to the Project Director


Strengthening Partnerships and Networking
• To promote mental health activities in refugees communities and partner organisations
• To lead in conducting case conferences with relevant stakeholders on mental health issues
• To develop partnerships with refugee support groups and local agencies to sustain the provision of psychosocial and mental health services to urban asylum seekers and refugees


• To communicate regularly with the Project Director, reporting on all major issues and developments in the field
• To submit monthly activity reports to the Project Director
• To develop/complete project proposals and reports (6-month and annual) according to JRS format as well as write other project/situation reports as required, together with the project team members
• To participate in regular team meetings
• To maintain positive communication with team members
• To assist Project Director as requested


Qualifications & Experience:
• Fluent in English.  Knowledge of Thai is an advantage
• Bachelor in Psychology, Social Work or related professional field
• Minimum 3 years of experience in community activity, outreach activity or related psychosocial activity areas
• 2 years of experience in counselling; individual counselling/ group counselling
• Excellent public speaking, facilitation and communications skills
• Able to work with individuals, groups and communities to improve mental health
• Experience of working with refugees is an advantage
• Experience in developing effective treatment action/follow up plan
• Strong teaching, training, and supervision skills
• Computer literacy, being able to use Word, Excel, Access and Power Point programs
• Good data collection skills and is able to use JRS’ data system
• Good interpersonal, communication, managerial and diplomatic skills
• Positive attitude towards vulnerable persons (POC/ Non-POC )
• Service-minded, patient, and self-motivated
• Ability to work successfully in a multi-cultural with limited resources and challenging environments


This position offers a local salary package with Medical and Accident group insurance, Life insurance, and other benefits. Interested candidates must apply by sending cover letter and CV (including 3 references) with front picture and address how they satisfy the criteria described above.
Please send CV and cover letter to by 30 April 2020 or as soon as the position filled.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

Contact :

เจ้าหน้าที่ประจำสำนักงาน / Officer

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