Social work careers in the BC Public Service
Last updated: October 19, 2021
Employees at the Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) work with Delegated Aboriginal Agencies, Indigenous service partners, social service agencies, foster caregivers, as well as cross-government and social sector partners to deliver inclusive, respectful and accessible services to children, youth and families.
MCFD offers many programs and services, including adoption and child care funding, programs for children with support needs, community resources for youth in or transitioning from government care, child welfare and the justice system. Service delivery is supported by a provincial office that focuses on corporate, financial, policy, information management, technology, legal, legislative and human resources.
MCFD works to ensure that all Indigenous and non-Indigenous youth in British Columbia live in safe, healthy, nurturing families and are strongly connected to their communities and culture.
Life at MCFD
A challenging and rewarding career
You can make a difference in the lives of children, youth and families in your community by providing or supporting client services.
A supportive, encouraging and inclusive environment
MCFD is committed to diversity and inclusion. This means hiring employees who represent the population we serve, removing barriers that prevent equitable employment and supporting respectful work environments. This includes recruiting Indigenous employees interested in leading organizational change and developing new relationships with Indigenous communities. Candidates will join a team that's part of an innovative workplace.
Continuous learning and development
MCFD supports employee training, growth and development. There are formal education opportunities, including the student loan forgiveness program, as well as a scholarship program for employees and their children.
Flexible work arrangements
Most work schedules are Mondays to Fridays, but you can explore various flexible work options, including contract and part-time work, flexible schedules, telework agreements and job-share arrangements.
We offer several different work options, including:
- 7-on/7-off schedule: This shift schedule is 7 days on shift (generally 10-hour days), followed by 7 days of rest. Employees typically travel from an urban centre to a rural centre for their 7 days on
- After hours programs: The after hours team typically works outside of core Monday to Friday hours. This can include 7 nights on shift followed by 7 days of rest. After hours programs exist throughout the province
- Provincial centralized screening (PCS): Provides 24/7 child protection service including receiving child protection reports, request for support and critical child protection support through contact centres located in the lower mainland
- Provincial mobile response team (PMRT): A team of experienced social program officers deployed for temporary assistance in crisis or need
Trauma-informed practice is at the forefront of our work. Our team supports an integrated understanding of trauma in all levels of care, including leaders, system planners, practitioners, caregivers, care providers and our key partners working with children, youth and families.
Health and well-being
The BC Public Service supports employee health and well-being by providing tools and resources designed to prevent or reduce the impact of illness or injury.
Your career development
We support training, growth and professional and personal development opportunities. MCFD also supports formal education, including the student loan forgiveness program and a scholarship program for employees and their children.
Diversity and inclusion
MCFD aims to create work environments that are diverse and inclusive while empowering our employees to feel involved, respected, valued and connected. We welcome professionals from all races, ages, religions, disabilities, sexual orientations and gender identities and expressions. We use the diversity of experiences, skills and talents of all our employees to create respectful workplaces in which folks are encouraged to bring their perspectives to the team.
We offer many career-building opportunities for folks looking to make an impact in the lives of children and families across B.C. This is your chance to learn and succeed in a rewarding role while making a difference in your community. Find out more about social work jobs.
Social workers can live and work in some of the most beautiful provincial landscapes. Depending on your location, we offer an incentive payment program for those who work in rural and remote communities. We also offer allowances and vacation adjustments.
To learn more about these communities, check out the northern community profiles.
Our hiring process
We're looking for people who want to make a positive impact in the lives of children, youth and families in B.C.
To learn more, please review the hiring process for applicants.
Our ideal candidates
- Advocate for children, youth and families
- Are resilient, flexible and empathetic
- Are motivated, collaborative and committed
- Promote culturally safe practices and achieve positive outcomes
- Are excellent communicators who can relate to people of all ages, backgrounds and cultures
Visit the B.C. Government job postings page for current opportunities.
We’re committed to the vision of Indigenous children and youth in British Columbia living in safe, healthy, nurturing families and being strongly connected to their communities and cultures. We know that significant change with a focus on truth and reconciliation and calls to action is needed to achieve this vision. We’re committed to recruiting Indigenous employees interested in leading organizational change and developing new relationships and partnerships with Indigenous communities.
From executive leadership to service delivery, across all work within our ministry, Indigenous employees are supporting systemic transformation where the needs of Indigenous children, youth, families and communities are heard in culturally safe and meaningful ways.
The Indigenous recruitment and cultural safety team is honoured to share our Indigenous recruitment video that showcases the worldviews, relational practice and innovations that our Indigenous colleagues bring to our workplace to support systemic, progressive change and organizational culture that develops a sense of community in our shared work.
Students and recent graduates
Are you a student or recent graduate with little or no work experience looking to start a career in social work? The BC Public Service offers a supportive learning environment to help you get there.
The growth series
Applicants who do not have the minimum 2 years of job specific experience required may be placed in the growth series. This is a training series where employees gain the experience that they need to be established at the full working level. This is one of many ways MCFD provides valuable work experience, especially for new graduates.
Application requirements that work for you
MCFD has expanded eligibility requirements for the social program officer 24 (SPO) classifications to make a career in social work more accessible.
Social program officer 24
For our social program officer 24 (SPO) roles, we welcome applicants with a range of education and experience. Social program officers support adoptions, guardianship, resources, children and youth with support needs and child protection workers.
Preferred education credentials
For the SPO roles listed above, the education requirements include a Bachelor’s degree or higher in social work, a Bachelor’s degree or higher in child and youth care, a Master’s of Education in counselling psychology, or a Master’s of Arts in counselling psychology with a completed practicum in family and child welfare.
Expanded education and experience credentials
You may be eligible to apply for SPO positions if you have a Bachelor’s degree in a human services field or a Bachelor’s degree with a major or honours in a human services field plus a minimum of 2 years of related work experience.
Human services fields include:
- Early childhood education
- Indigenous studies
Related work experience can include working in:
- A non-delegated agency on a reserve providing direct support services
- A family services agency that provides assessment and counselling services
- A contracted agency providing assessment, counselling and family support services
- A residential setting for children or youth that also involves direct work with families
- A probation or corrections setting serving youth and families
- A mental health setting providing assessment and counselling services
- A health setting providing assessment and counselling services
- An education setting undertaking assessment and counselling services
Job specific work experience
In most cases, applicants with 2 or more years of job specific work experience will begin at the full working level of a SPO rather than within the growth series. Applicable work experience includes working with children, youth and families in several settings, the most common being experience in a legislated child protection agency that provides child protection or family support services.
For a full list of applicable settings, please review the applicant job profile.
- Canadian citizen or permanent resident or work visa
- To be considered for any position in the B.C. Government, you must be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or hold a valid work visa
- Security screening
- You’ll be required to complete a Criminal Record Check (CRC) and, depending on your role, a Criminal Records Review Act (CRRA) check
- International Credential Evaluation Services (ICES)
- If your education was obtained outside of Canada, it must be assessed for equivalency through International Credential Evaluation Services (ICES)
- Driver's License
- For most SPO positions, you must have a valid class 5 B.C. driver's license with no restriction or equivalent (for example: from another Canadian province)
How to apply
- Visit the B.C. Government job postings page for current opportunities
- Search jobs by location, category, or job title
- Select the job title to open the posting
- When you're ready, select the ’Apply’ button at the bottom of the posting
- Confirm your personal information and paste a copy of your resume
Review the hiring process for applicants page for a summary of what to expect in a competition.