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HPOG Success Story: Daphne at Buffalo & Erie Workforce Development Consortium

Published: February 20, 2020
Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG)
Technical Assistance

Daphne smiles in the officeBuffalo, NY

Daphne was living in Nigeria with her husband and young son when life became intolerable due to religious persecution. Daphne wanted a better life for her son. She knew people living in the United States and made the decision to leave. She landed in a community that was not very welcoming. The language barrier was difficult. While searching for assistance for her family, she found Vive La Casa, operated by Jericho Road Community Health Center, in Buffalo, New York. 

Vive La Casa provides legal aid and safe refuge to people seeking asylum in the United States. The staff opened their arms and hearts to Daphne and her son, finding her space at a shelter. While there, Daphne told a new friend that she had interest in working in healthcare. That friend referred her to the Buffalo Employment and Training Center (BETC). It was at BETC where she met Pat Williams, a case manager for the HPOG Buffalo program.

Daphne had no experience in healthcare, so Pat helped guide her. They decided the best path to Daphne one day becoming a nurse was to begin as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA). Daphne took the Test of Adult Basic Education (TABE) to gain placement in a CNA course. She failed the math portion, so Pat advised her to enroll in Basic Skills training to bring her scores up.  Daphne studied hard for a year. After passing the test, she was accepted into a CNA training program. She applied for and received HPOG funds to cover the cost of her training.

While in the program, HPOG provided many supports.  In addition to tuition, HPOG gave her a bus pass so that she could get back and forth to training, as well as childcare for her son. After graduation, Daphne passed the state certification exam. She was hired to work as a full time CNA for HighPointe Nursing Facility through Kaleida Health. Daphne needed a new uniform to start her job. HPOG Buffalo's Emergency fund was there to cover the cost.

Daphne loves living in her welcoming community and is very involved. She attends mass at the St. Jude Center and is an active volunteer with the church. She still dreams of becoming a nurse and plans to take more math courses to prepare for the Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) entrance exam. She feels so grateful to Vive La Casa, the wonderful people in her community, and HPOG for all she has been given.

Daphne says, "Life is so much better now, and I'm so thankful for the overwhelming support we have received here in Buffalo."

This success story was self-identified by the grantee and information contained in this document was provided by the grantee.

Last Reviewed: February 20, 2020