FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Health Care Access Now (HCAN) has been awarded a grant of $30,000 from the Josephine S. Russell Family Charitable Trust of the PNC Charitable Trusts to expand its Community Health Worker (CHW) Certification Program to support maternal and child wellness in racial and ethnic minority populations. The funds will be used to provide scholarships for a new CHW workforce from the Asian, Latinx, Indigenous, and other underrepresented communities.
- HCAN certifies CHWs to work in the field, providing resources and connections to pregnant, maternal, pediatric, and adult clients with chronic conditions to improve health outcomes. These scholarships will be awarded to eight future CHWs who will work in Maternal & Child Health Care Coordination, with the goals of reducing preterm births, low infant birth weights, and infant mortality in the Latinx, Asian, and Indigenous communities.
- Those particularly suited to working as CHWs come from the vulnerable communities HCAN serves. This grant will be instrumental in furthering HCAN’s mission of achieving health equity and erasing barriers to good health outcomes.
HCAN’s goal is to ensure that all women have a healthy pregnancy, delivery, and ongoing medical care. This grant will allow HCAN to train CHWs from vulnerable communities that might otherwise go overlooked.
Health Care Access Now (HCAN) received a $30,000 grant from the Josephine S. Russell Family Charitable Trust of the PNC Charitable Trusts to expand its Community Health Worker (CHW) Certification Program to support maternal and child wellness in racial and ethnic minority populations. The funds will be used to provide need-based scholarships for eight students from Asian, Latinx, Indigenous, and other underrepresented communities entering the CHW training program. Becoming a CHW allows people entry to the healthcare and social services sectors while earning a living wage.
Women of color face greater health disparities, barriers to accessible care, and alarmingly higher rates of preterm births, low birth rates, and infant mortality. The CHWs recruited from the Asian, Latinx, and Indigenous communities will work in HCAN’s Maternal & Child Health Care Coordination program to provide education and resources to eliminate social and environmental barriers to good health outcomes.
“CHWs who have shared experiences, language, and community with their clients are better able to build trust and rapport,” says Sarah Mills, CEO, HCAN. “This grant can help us create stronger relationships between client and CHW, which leads to mothers having improved pregnancy and delivery experiences.”
This grant money allows HCAN to train CHWs who will serve clients in the Asian, Latinx, and Indigenous communities who might otherwise have fallen through the system’s cracks. Funding from the Russell Family Charitable Trust for scholarships is a step in helping HCAN realize its goal to ensure that every woman, regardless of race or ethnicity, has a healthy pregnancy, delivery, and ongoing medical care to raise healthy children.
“No one who is interested in becoming a CHW should be held back from educational and professional opportunities,” says Mill. “This grant helps us change eight people’s lives.”
And those eight people will change many more lives. Each CHW serves an average of 35 clients during their first year of employment, which increases to an average of 50 clients per year in subsequent years. HCAN is thrilled to be able to make a greater impact on health equity in vulnerable communities.