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Science, Health, Tech

New Castle County uses CARES Act money to launch National Health Corps Delaware

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New Castle County is using federal CARES Act funding to host AmeriCorps members to help with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The new program is called National Health Corps Delaware.

 

The AmeriCorps members will serve at health care and related non-profit organizations focusing on the COVID response, including vaccine programs.  

Activities such as vaccine education and outreach are part of their efforts, and the county encourages non-profit organizations providing health services to apply to host corps members at the county’s website.

County Executive Matt Meyer says the one-year pilot program is needed right now.

"We have an urgent need as we seem to put all hands on deck to assist the state Division of Public Health with vaccine dissemination and to address long-standing health inequities that have been exacerbated in this pandemic," said Meyer. "We at New Castle County using Federal CARES Act funding will be creating a program with 20 members."

Meyer adds it’s been a collaborative effort to launch the new program.

"My whole county government team with the Health Federation of Philadelphia and AmeriCorps to create this exciting pilot program that will take engaged citizens and provide them an incredible opportunity to serve our community to reinforce the heroic efforts of our frontline healthcare workers where they needed most," Meyer said.

National Health Corps Delaware hopes to support empowering youth and adults to make choices about their health and lead healthier lives and reduce health disparities, while fostering members commitment to health-related careers and developing skills through professional development.

Other objectives include supporting organizations aiming to reduce disparities and improve health outcomes in communities, and to create a model for national service in a crisis. 

The county has started recruiting two staff positions for NHC, a Program Director and a Program Coordinator.