By Kymberly Lavigne-Hinkley, Director of Customized Training at the Department of Small Business Services
Cooperative Home Care Associates (CHCA), a worker-owned home care agency, wanted to improve advancement opportunities and maximize the role of the home health aide in improving quality of care. Through its contacts with NYACH, CHCA learned about the Customized Training program offered through the NYC Department of Small Business Services. This program provides funding to enable New York City businesses to invest in their employees. With financial support, applicants can afford training programs that impact a business’s bottom line; for example, by reducing turnover, becoming more efficient or productive, or by increasing and retaining customers. With the help of a $35,160 Customized Training award, CHCA provided advanced training to 12 Home Health Aides who were promoted to Senior Aide positions to carry out enhanced observation and reporting from client homes. This shift supports reduced costs through improved employee retention and the avoidance of costly medical incidents. The workers received an average wage increase of 21.4%.