Health Profession
Opportunities Grant 2017

photo of RRRS Health Profession Opportunities Grant training class

Rochester Refugee Resettlement Services (RRRS) is partnered with ABC, Action for a Better Community, on a federal health grant, Health Profession Opportunities Grant (HPOG). The Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG) Program was established by the Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA) to provide education and training programs in high-demand health care professions to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) recipients AND other low-income individuals. This program is an important federal effort to improve the labor market opportunities of disadvantaged populations within the health care field. We are now in year three of the HPOG.

To date, RRRS has enrolled close to 120 participants. The program is designed to help these participants find a path to a career in the health field. Refugees and immigrants have unique challenges in that they need to be adept at English and pass education and English screening tests that are designed for Americans in order to enter training for certification. Our strategy has been to get our people into positions that do not require screening tests. This is not to say that our people are not conversant in English, but they are not familiar with American testing. We have found that nursing homes and senior care facilities like our people. These institutions are more interested in dependability and compassionate attitude, and our people fit that model. So far our job navigators have opened conversation with two senior living centers and two large nursing homes to seek spaces for our people.