California offers free training for caregivers

California offers free training for caregivers

The California Department of Aging has announced the launch of the CalGrows workforce training and development program for caregivers working with older adults and adults with disabilities.

The free job training is designed to offer Californians a path to a career in healthcare.

California anticipates a growing demand for workers in the state’s health and human services system — especially for elderly and disabled adult caregivers — and this is one way the state is preparing.

“The caregivers themselves have barriers,” said Karen Jones, Executive Director of Long Term Care Ombudsman Services. “These trainings will help a lot. Removing some of those barriers and also having the training can mean the difference between giving good care and causing hard or mediocre care.”

To be eligible to take these courses you must be a caregiver who lives in California as a home care aide, care coordinator or care manager, dementia care specialist, unpaid friends and family caregiver, and other unlicensed care workers.

“Whether it’s their spouse or partner, or their mom or dad, or a brother or sister, or a neighbor, it’s unexpected and unplanned,” said Shannon McOuat, Executive Director of Hospice of San Luis Obispo County. “Any kind of training that becomes available, whether in person or online, I think is a benefit and asset to the community and all caregivers out there.”

The California Department of Aging is funded by more than $1 billion from the 2022-23 state budget. To qualify for a $6,000 incentive the program is offering, you must be a paid direct care worker and employed as a direct care worker within the last 60 days, and you must live in California.

Courses will be available in English, Spanish, Armenian, Cantonese, Korean, Mandarin, Tagalog, Russian, and Vietnamese. Additional languages will be added as they become available.

While the program provides various learning courses for caregivers working with older adults and adults with disabilities, the program does not offer an academic degree or professional licensing.

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