Community Health Worker Training 2015 Program Graduate,
The Northeast Resiliency Consortium
Written by: Malika Franklin
“The beginning of the rest of your life.” This is how Charmaine Davis describes the Community Health Worker (CHW) training program at Kingsborough Community College. She thought she was living her dream career as a dental hygienist before she discovered The Northeast Resiliency Consortium (NRC), a Department of Labor TAACCCT program, but little did she know, her life was just about to truly begin.
Shortly after receiving her Associate’s Degree from NYU, Charmaine’s mother was diagnosed with Stage 3 Squamous Cell Carcinoma. Charmaine’s medical training aided in the care she gave her mother. She fought cancer almost 2 years before she passed away. One of her last wishes: “Don’t let anyone else suffer like this”. To Charmaine that was one promise she knew she had to keep.
With a desire to give back to local under-served, vulnerable and underprivileged communities, she began volunteering and giving presentations at neighborhood schools and community centers to bring awareness for oral care and cancer prevention, but she still felt that she needed to do more.
November and December have been thrilling months for NRC students: Workforce 1 in-house mock interviews, workshops for enrollment into Kingsborough (via the CAT: the CUNY Assessment Test), CHW students leading Prevention Workshops to CEWD’s Project Rise students, and CA students assisting with Chefs for Impact, NRC students have been busy! With our support, NRC students have persisted through the program and really shown how they can shine.
On Wednesday, Dec. 3rd, NRC Community Health Worker Cohort 1 students gave a presentation to Project Rise participants about the role they play in their own health, with a multi-tiered focus. NRC students spoke about price disparities–how processed foods are often advertised at sale prices, while healthier products are much more costly–and the layout of grocery stores–how fresh produce is often located just on the perimeters whereas processed foods fill the bulk of stores. CHW students highlighted that individuals should and can inquire about the foods they consume to take an active role in determining which foods are healthy.
In addition to food consumption, CHW students told participants about the importance of being more engaged in their overall health. For example, resources both on-campus and throughout the city, provide individuals with information about sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV. These resources give information about protecting oneself against STDs and also talk about the positive impacts of taking control of one’s sexual health.
NRC programs seek to build a resilient and educated workforce that is not only able to perform tasks required by their jobs, but also has the skills to react when crises arise. Additionally, NRC-eligible students are qualified to receive enhanced services through the program. These services include:
The Community Health Worker program at Kingsborough’s NRC prepares students for educational pathways at other CUNY schools and for careers as case managers, community counselors and patient advocates, just to name a few. We will be holding information sessions for our CHW program later this fall, so fill out this quick survey to reserve your spot.
If you haven’t been able to make it to our previous open houses, there’s no reason to worry, we’ve just scheduled more!
Come to one of our our open houses (September 3rd, 4th and 5th and 10am) to learn about the affordable career training programs offered at CEWD. You must call or email to get location information, so contact us today! 718.368.4637