San Antonio, TX
Community partnerships open opportunities for TANF recipients.
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) recipients in Texas face a challenge when it comes to training and education. Under the state’s work-first service model, parents are required to work a minimum of 30 to 40 hours a week to receive TANF benefits. This forces them to choose between work and school. Through thoughtful planning with community partners, Alamo Colleges District’s Alamo Health Profession Opportunity Grant (Alamo HPOG) program found a way to offer full-time training to TANF recipients without fear of losing their benefits.
Alamo HPOG, Goodwill Industries, and Workforce Solutions Alamo designed a medical front office training program that meets TANF work-first requirements. The program blends work experience with training and certifications in the growing field of healthcare. Participants work 32 hours, Monday through Thursday, at a job site. Friday is eight hours of medical training at Goodwill Careers Academy. The program connects participants with ready-to-hire employers for their selected job site.
The TANF medical front desk training program features carousel-style enrollment that allows new participants to enroll at any time during the first five weeks of training modules. Participants have 12 weeks from the time they start the program to make up any missed modules in their training. This carousel style allows a larger window for enrollment, serving more TANF recipients who may be unaware of the program.
The program’s goal is for participants to interview for and obtain a subsidized medical front office job with an opportunity for employment by the end of the training program. At the end of the pilot, five of the eight participants successfully completed the training and were employed by Alamo HPOG partner, South Texas Center for Pediatric Care.
“South Texas Center for Pediatric Care has been excited to be in a partnership with the Alamo Colleges District HPOG program. It provided the opportunity to have some wonderful students be a part of our day-to-day patient work environment through this collaborative project. It allowed some of the students to evolve from student to employee; this has truly been a significant partnership for Alamo Colleges HPOG and South Texas Center for Pediatric Care,” said Francine Prosser-Johnson, Chief Operating Officer of South Texas Center for Pediatric Care.
“I absolutely loved the program. It was very informative, and it prepared me for the job by providing certificates like OSHA and HIPPA. The classes on Fridays were perfect because we could work Monday through Thursday. After training, South Texas Center for Pediatric Care hires the students!”
– Lanikia, HPOG Participant
This Promising Practice was self-identified by the grantee and information contained in this document was provided by the grantee.