Direct Support Professional (DSP)


Employment Opportunities:    Multiple Positions and Schedules Open - PT and FT 




Individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities are often not treated equally, having been labeled by their disability and separated from the community.  We believe that everyone deserves the opportunity for a full life in their community, where they can live, work, and socialize, while receiving the supports they need to live the life they choose.  All of our Direct Support Professionals, regardless of program, work towards that belief. 



Teach and assist persons served by The Arc of Southside, in completing activities associated with a daily living routine; those activities include, but are not limited to: cooking, cleaning, laundry, hygiene, meal planning and preparation, grocery shopping, banking, transportation, obtaining and giving medications as prescribed, etc.

  • Believe that people with disabilities are worthy of respect, and commit to assisting in their full inclusion in the community.
  • Use personal vehicle during work hours, as needed, to carry out services as described.
  • Provide training to persons served by The Arc of Southside as defined by each person’s Individualized Support Plan.
  • Assist persons served in integrating into the community and spending leisure time engaged in activities that the individual enjoys.
  • Provide guidance and behavioral support, read, understand, and implement behavioral support plans/interventions.
  • Provide emergency first aid should occasion arise, and assist persons served in obtaining prompt medical attention from a qualified professional when necessary.
  • Document services provided, and ensure the confidentiality of information and records pertaining to persons served.
  • Respond to emergency situations and provide crisis intervention as needed.
  • Adhere to The Arc of Southside's Employee Code of Ethics.
  • Serve as a liaison, on behalf of persons served, with family members, other agencies, and the general community, and represent the agency in a professional and positive manner in all interactions.
  • Complete required non-service related forms such as payroll and mileage sheets.
  • Attend meetings, training, in-services, etc. asscheduled or assigned.
  • Follow agency policies, as they currently exist, and participate in the development and implementation of future agency policies and goals.



  • H.S Diploma or equivalent degree.
  • 18 years old or older.
  • Ability to self-direct work.
  • Able to communicate effectively.
  • Ability to carry out the physical requirements of this position which include but are not limited to: lifting up to 50 pounds several times per shift as needed, ascending and descending stairs several times per shift, pushing and pulling wheelchairs and sitting, standing, and walking for periods of time throughout a shift as needed.
  • Must have valid Virginia Driver’s License.
  • Must have reliable transportation during work hours.
  • Must have a satisfactory criminal history check.



  • Ability to assist individual with completing activities of daily living.
  • Experience through education or work history that demonstrates reliability/dependability.
  • Skill to complete satisfactorily: Medication Certification, Medicaid Waiver Certification, First Aid/CPR, Mandt, and other requirements associated with orientation.
  • Ability to work effectively in a team.
  • Ability to make decisions and exercise good judgment.
  • Skill in locating and accessing community resources.



Work requires a range of light to moderate physical exertion to assist person supported with personal care, lifts, and transfers as needed. Work also requires assisting with toileting, changing linens, and other supports for individual served, in completing some activities, and other forms of physical exertion. Work requires the ability to concentrate and pay attention to detail for a majority of work time.

Generally good working conditions with potential exposure to communicable diseases with little risk if proper procedures and safeguards are followed



DSP Positions by Program:



Community Coach DSP – Assist adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities to engage and become active participants within their community.  Activities will include, but are not limited to, accessing community activities, socialization, exploring volunteer opportunities, etc.).



Transition Specialist DSP – Assist adolescents with developmental disabilities, ages 16-22, in partnership with the student’s school, in learning and developing the skills they will need to transition to gainful employment, following graduation.



Job Coach DSP – Work 1:1 with adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities to assist them in obtaining and maintaining long-term gainful employment.  Activities will include, but are not limited to, assessing work readiness, exploring work opportunities, providing on the job training in a variety of environments, acting as liaison between employee and employer, etc.



Life Coach DSP – Assist adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities in their home and community, providing general support of daily life, while continually teaching the skills needed to increase independence.  Activities may include, but are not limited to, maintaining health and safety, home care, personal finance, meal prep, personal care, access to community, socialization, etc.).  ***Great care is taken to thoughtfully match candidates with the individual they will be supporting by taking into account personal preferences, interests and personality.  The individual served has the final say in the selection of their support staff.



To complete an application, you may come into our administrative office at 734 Main Street, Danville, VA, or you may download an application and either mail, or email a completed application to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , or fax it to 836.5419.  We keep applications on file for up to 12 months.  Unfortunately, applications cannot be completed online, they must be downloaded to complete.  


Due to the volume of applications we receive, we are not able to give status updates, but if you are selected for an interview, you will be contacted directly by the appropriate Program Director.