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2000 Best Practice Awards

Best of the Best Winners: Rhode Island

Best Practice: Help at Home

Help at Home Extends Independent Living by Providing Seniors with In-Home Assistance

Coventry, Rhode Island. The Help at Home program of the Coventry Housing Authority in Coventry, Rhode Island, provides assisted living to residents in their own homes to prolong their ability to live independently. After a thorough assessment, an individual service plan is prepared for each participant. Services that are available include three meals a day, medication monitoring, wellness and health intervention and education, personal care assistance, transportation, day care, friendly visitor case management and a caregiver support group. A small housing authority (195 units) with a budget of only $23,000 funds the program.

Photo of Jacquelyne Lusardi receiving award from Secretary Cuomo & Deputy Secretary Ramirez
Jacquelyne Lusardi (c) receiving Best of the Best award from Secretary Cuomo (l) and Deputy Secretary Ramirez (r)

Community partners are key players in the provision of services. These include the Coventry Department of Human Services, the local hospital, numerous home care providers, and students and teachers of the local vocational school who cook meals. In addition, the Rhode Island Department of Elderly Affairs contributed the grant funds that have successfully funded the program. Grant funding will be leveraged with private foundation funding to continue the program.

Help at Home gives participants and their families the confidence that they will be able to remain independent for a long period of time. Through this program, the housing authority has helped people who would otherwise be in nursing homes and decreases the need for hospitalizations. The program has alleviated family burdens, strengthened lives, prevented premature institutionalization and restored quality of life to a vulnerable population.

The program maximizes the use of community resources, ensuring that those in need are assisted before a crisis occurs. Steps to replicate this program include the following:

  • Identify community resources
  • Provide outreach to residents, caregivers and the community
  • Perform an assessment of resident needs
  • Develop individual care plans
  • Provide linkages to meet resident needs
  • Provide ongoing education
  • Monitor and modify the program as needed
  • Evaluate outcomes

Contact: Jacquelyne T. Lusardi, Phone: (401) 828-4367
Tracking Number: 121
Winning Category: Geographic

Best Practice: World of Work Plus

Comprehensive Employment Training Program Helps Clients Prepare for Work

Providence, Rhode Island. Transitioning a welfare recipient into the job market is just one of the many challenges faced by the state welfare workers. There was a need for organized and well-planned job assistance for recipients that would include labor market information, salary expectations, and job descriptions. World of Work Plus services help Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF), Section 8 and public housing recipients find stable employment, augmenting the assistance received by state welfare workers.

In less than one year, the program has had phenomenal success. Since 1999, World of

Photo of Marsha Sullivan receiving Best of the Best award
Marsha Sullivan (c) receiving Best of the Best award from Secretary Cuomo (l) and Deputy Secretary Ramirez (r)

Work Plus has operated several offices where customers can receive services. It placed 24 participants in paid employment, 32 participants received educational assessment and 32 participants received their GED.

World of Work Plus is a partnership between the Providence Housing Authority and the U.S. Department of Labor, Rhode Island Department of Human Services, Job Link Inc., and the Providence/Cranston Job Training Partnership Administration. The program offers case management services, a six-week job readiness program in English and Spanish, community work experience, job placement and retention services, and adult education services. The program also provides customers with the ability to interface with the state TANF agency. Furthermore, customers can access up to $750 to purchase items that will help them obtain and retain employment.

The World of Work Plus program accomplished their goals by creating a task force comprised of public housing and other governmental officials, and private and non-profit organizations. The task force focused on several goals: ensuring communication between groups, that the program reflected the needs of area residents, educating local neighborhood businesses on the benefits of the community work experience, as well as securing funding for the program. As a result of the partnerships between federal, state, and local employment agencies, World of Work integrates welfare recipients back into the workforce one person at a time.

Contact: Stephen J. O'Rourke, Phone: (401) 751-6400
Tracking Number: 2155
Winning Category: Geographic

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Content Archived: April 20, 2011

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