Posted: February 9th, 2023

Jenna is a trans-woman who has been experiencing homelessness

Question / Scenario
Jenna is a trans-woman who has been experiencing homelessness for over 3 years. Jenna was previously living with her wife however after the marriage ended, she struggled to get back on her feet. Jenna has accessed emergency shelters in the past however was often discharged due to aggressive behaviour. Jenna shared that she drinks alcohol which was a factor in her having difficulty getting a job. Jenna is currently in receipt of Ontario Disability Support Payments (ODSP) and receives approximately $1169 per month. Jenna has been admitted to your shelter and assigned to your case load.
Please answer the questions below:
1. Describe how you would engage with Jenna to develop trust and begin to develop a service plan.
2. Based on the scenario, what are some of the presenting issues and, for these issues what community services/resources would you consider in the development of a case plan.
3. What are some of the challenges you may encounter when working with Jenna and some strategies you would use to address those challenges.
To engage with Jenna and develop trust, I would start by introducing myself and explaining my role as her case manager. I would express my willingness to listen to her concerns and experiences, and reassure her that my goal is to provide her with the support and resources she needs to improve her situation. I would also explain the services and resources available to her, and emphasize the importance of open and honest communication in order to work together effectively. I would also ask for her permission to share her information with other relevant service providers, such as housing or addiction support services, with her consent.
Some of the presenting issues in this scenario include homelessness, a history of aggressive behaviour, alcohol dependency, and financial insecurity. Community services and resources that may be considered in the development of a case plan include:
Housing support: Jenna’s long-term housing needs will be a priority. She may be eligible for rental assistance programs or support finding permanent housing.
Addictions support: Jenna’s alcohol dependency may be addressed through counseling or addiction treatment programs.
Employment support: Jenna may need assistance finding and maintaining employment. This could include job training programs or help with resume building and interviewing.
Financial support: Jenna may need assistance with budgeting and managing her finances, as well as accessing benefits such as ODSP.
Some challenges that may be encountered when working with Jenna include:
Her history of aggressive behaviour may make it difficult for her to maintain stable housing or employment.
Her alcohol dependency may make it difficult for her to engage in services and make positive changes in her life.
Her financial insecurity may make it difficult for her to afford basic necessities.
To address these challenges, I would work with Jenna to develop a plan that addresses her immediate needs while also addressing the underlying issues that contribute to her homelessness and unstable housing situation. I would also work with other service providers to coordinate Jenna’s care, such as counseling or addiction treatment, and provide her with the support she needs to achieve her goals. Additionally, I would be empathetic and non-judgmental in my communication with her, and help her to understand the importance of addressing her addiction to alcohol in order to improve her overall well-being.

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