ROANOKE (WSLS 10) – Goodwill Industries of the Valleys, headquartered in Roanoke, has been awarded a one-year Health Professionals Opportunity Grant from the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Family Assistance in the amount of $2,567,650.
The grant is renewable for up to four years, based on program outcomes. Goodwill is the only grant recipient in Virginia and one of 32 nationwide.
Officials say this grant will allow Goodwill to create “Good Care,” a program that will provide supportive services, life skills, education, training, and assistance to obtain employment in the health care industry.
Individuals served will enter an in demand occupation and have the opportunity to grow and advance their career through health care pathways. Good Care will serve individuals that are TANF recipients, as well as other low-income or near-poor individuals.
Mary Anne Gilmer, Vice president of Work Force Development at Goodwill Industries says the program will help improve the lives of hundreds of impoverished families across Southwest Virginia.
“We think it will have a significant impact,” Gilmer said.
Courses will be offered to set those students into a an option of about a dozen career paths in the health field including registered nurses, LPN and medical billing and coding.
“Businesses are saying we need more of these qualified workers in a variety of occupations. We know that these are wages that can sustain a family so it’s a perfect fit,” Gilmer said. “This just allows us to build capacity in the training system to meet business need,” Gilmer said.
These services will be delivered throughout Goodwill’s 31 county, 13 city service area through partnerships with local community colleges.
Participating community college partners are Virginia Western (Roanoke), Dabney S. Lancaster (Clifton Forge), Blue Ridge (Weyers Cave), Central Virginia (Lynchburg), Piedmont Virginia (Charlottesville), New River (Dublin), and Wytheville. Additional partners include multiple businesses in the health care sector and adult education programs throughout the service area. GoodCare will also advance Virginia’s professional learning community, expand regional partnerships, and improve the regional workforce system.
For more information on the program call Goodwill Industries at 540-581-0602. Help will be available regardless of the region you are searching for.