Primary Counselor

The Primary Counselor carries out the twelve core functions of substance abuse counseling for an assigned resident caseload. He or she must be a self-starter who is able to multi-task and work as an effective member of an interdisciplinary clinical team. Good clinical and relational skills are a must, as well as the ability to work in a faith-based residential recovery environment with male residents.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • The Primary Counselor facilitates the 12 Core Functions of Substance Abuse Counseling with an assigned group of residents in the 120 day substance abuse recovery program.  The scope of practice for the Primary Counselor is determined by the credentialing board to which she/he is accountable.
  • Terms of clinical supervision will be determined as appropriate within the definitions of the North Carolina Substance Abuse Professional Practice Board or other appropriate credentialing body.

Agency policy requires that the Primary Counselor receive one hour of clinical supervision per forty hours of work with an assigned Certified Clinical Supervisor within the agency.  There will be no exceptions to this policy, regardless of licensure or certification level.

  • The Primary Counselor is expected to adhere to the specific code of ethics accompanying his or her certification and/or licensure, as well as to all agency policies.
  • Other duties as assigned


Carries out the twelve core functions as needed with assigned residents.  While some functions may be assigned to other departments within the program, the Primary Counselor must be able to perform the following functions:

  • SCREENING: the process by which a resident is determined appropriate and eligible for admission to a particular program
  • INTAKE: the administrative and initial assessment procedures for admission to a program
  • ORIENTATION: describing to the resident the following: general nature and goals of the program; rules governing resident conduct and infractions that can lead to disciplinary action or discharge from the program; the hours during which services are available; treatment costs to be borne by the resident, if any; and resident rights
  • ASSESSMENT: the procedures by which a counselor/program identifies and evaluates an individual’s strengths, weaknesses, problems, and needs for the development of a treatment plan
  • TREATMENT PLANNING: the process by which the counselor and the resident identify and rank problems needing resolution; establish agreed upon immediate and long-term goals; and decide upon a treatment process and the resources to be utilized
  • COUNSELING: (Individual, Group, and Significant Others): the utilization of special skills to assist individuals, families, or groups in achieving objectives through exploration of a problem and its ramifications; examination of attitudes and feelings; consideration of alternative solutions; and decision-making
  • CASE MANAGEMENT: activities which bring services, agencies, resources, or people together within a planned framework of action toward the achievement of established goals, which may involve liaison activities and collateral contacts
  • CRISIS INTERVENTION: those services which respond to an alcohol and/or other drug abuser’s needs during acute emotional and/or physical distress
  • RESIDENT EDUCATION: provision of information to individuals and groups concerning alcohol and other drug abuse, and the available services and resources
  • REFERRAL: identifying the needs of a resident that cannot be met by the counselor or agency and assisting the resident to utilize the support systems and community resources available
  • REPORT AND RECORD KEEPING: charting the results of the assessment and treatment plan; writing reports, progress notes, discharge summaries, and other resident-related data
  • CONSULTATION WITH OTHER PROFESSIONALS IN REGARD TO RESIDENT TREATMENT/SERVICES:  relating with in-house staff or outside professionals to assure comprehensive, quality care for the resident


To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required.


  • Registration with the North Carolina Substance Abuse Professional Practice Board (must be registered prior to beginning work)
  • High School diploma required; Associate’s, Bachelor’s, or Master’s degree preferred
  • Must achieve certification or licensure within five years of the date of hire


  • Appropriate oral and written communication skills
  • Must possess the ability to set and maintain healthy interpersonal boundaries
  • Must possess flexibility and leadership qualities
  • Proficient in Microsoft Windows work environment, Microsoft Office and Excel
  • Demonstrate instructional skill, particularly in the area of addiction and recovery


  • Spend the majority of time sitting, speaking, listening and/or writing.
  • Must be able to climb stairs
  • Must be able to lift a minimum of 30 pounds.
  • Desire to grow professionally and to achieve advanced level of counselor development and skill
  • Must be able to work in a fast-paced environment

Christian Witness:

Charlotte Rescue Mission maintains a Christian working environment as a Christ centered residential drug and alcohol recovery program where integrity, honesty, and concern for others play a critical role in the success of the ministry. We always strive to share the personal hope of Christ with those we interact with in thought, word and deed as it relates to recovery.

Job descriptions are intended to identify the key qualifications, responsibilities and types of duties expected on the job. The job description at the Charlotte Rescue Mission is not intended to be a description of all possible duties, responsibilities or requirements that may be present or encountered in any particular job assignment.

Applicants can send a resume, application, and cover letter to