The importance of third shift
Updated: May 13
Healthy connections are critical to the success of our residential ministry. Each staff member models a supportive adult relationship as they serve hurting youth with kindness. The third shift treatment specialist position is integral to the cottage residents and routine. Shawn Yambor, director of residential services, shares more about this unique role and how it benefits our kids.
The majority of the important work of third shift is done while the residents are sleeping. Third shift staff are responsible for cleaning the cottage every night including vacuuming, sweeping, mopping, and wiping down all surfaces. This reset of the cottage each night affirms to our clients the message that each day is a new day and a fresh start.
These key staff members provide safety, security and supervision to our children while they sleep. Duties include hourly resident checks as well as more frequent checks for kids with a higher need for supervision. Third shift staff are the first face our children see when they wake up from a nightmare or have an accident. Our clients often have increased fear and anxiety surrounding bedtime. By having a consistent person in the cottage, they can count on to keep them safe, it allows our kids to better engage in their overall treatment.
Third shift employees also cook and serve breakfast to our children in the mornings. By greeting residents in the morning and providing them with their first meal of the day, staff truly set the tone for our clients’ day. Morning routine starts around 6am. This includes starting morning shower routine for kids that are scheduled and preparing breakfast. The first shift staff joins the cottage around 7:30am to help residents transition to school or group treatment activities.
Third shift staff work four 10-hour shifts (10:30pm-8:30am) with three days off each week. Though client interaction is less than the other two shifts, our youth residents rely on a consistent face to keep them safe through the night and help them start their day on a positive note.
Like all residential employees, our third shift staff go through three weeks of training including on-the-job shadowing. The third shift supervisor also works third shift and is available to help staff develop their skills and provide them with support. Staff to child ratio on third shift is 1:9 at minimum. There is one third shift staff member per cottage, plus the additional support of the third shift supervisor.
This role is a great fit for someone who prefers staying up through the night or has other responsibilities during the day such as school, a second job or childcare. Staff that prefer working independently, are self-motivated, and have high integrity will thrive in this position. We look forward to connecting with you.