Despite global pandemic pressures, small nonprofit hires 13 locals who previously struggled with homelessness or other employment barriers
LOS ANGELES, January 26, 2021 – For many, the pandemic has resulted in devastating life events ranging from unemployment, loss of homes, and food insecurity – but for some, the pandemic has provided an opportunity for a fresh start, especially in the new year.
In May of 2020, National Health Foundation (NHF) launched a temporary recuperative care site as part of Project Roomkey – a statewide initiative to house individuals living on the streets to curb the spread of COVID-19. To staff the site, NHF partnered with Chrysalis, a local non-profit dedicated to serving low-income individuals and those experiencing homelessness as they transition back into the workforce.
“Through our partnership with Chrysalis, individuals are gaining valuable personal and professional skills, opening up the door to roles in the healthcare field that may not have been otherwise accessible to them,” shares National Health Foundation President & CEO, Kelly Bruno.
“The people we serve are our neighbors, friends, and family members who are among those at the greatest risk of experiencing the devasting health and economic effects of the pandemic,” reports Chrysalis President & CEO, Mark Loranger. “Hiring opportunities with the National Health Foundation provide a key that will unlock not just a job that will keep them financially secure during this unsettling time, but also open the door to a new path for their lives.”
Throughout the pandemic, 13 temporary employees have transitioned into full-time roles at National Health Foundation as Guest Service Associates. In this role, they continue to provide support services to guests at NHF’s permanent recuperative care sites in Pico-Union and Mid-City. For some, it is providing an opportunity to use their life experience in service to those currently experiencing homelessness. For others, like Dwona Beroit, this job is granting her the opportunity to explore other careers in healthcare like social work.
“Chrysalis is truly a blessing to me because without them I would have never been connected to National Health Foundation. Thanks to NHF, I have found my passion in helping others and am currently pursuing a degree in social work. I want to help others the same way Chrysalis and NHF helped me,” shares Chrysalis client and NHF staff member Dwona Beroit.
If you are interested in covering this partnership and its success, please connect with Stephany Villaseñor or Mallory Loring.
About National Health Foundation
Founded in 1973, National Health Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)3 corporation that works within communities to eliminate barriers to health, address the root causes of poor health, and advocate and empower under-resourced communities to find solutions that lead to lasting change. Embracing the guiding philosophy that health begins where we live, learn, work and play, the organization’s advocacy and work focuses on four key areas: housing, food access, built environments and education.
Chrysalis is a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a pathway to self-sufficiency for people experiencing homelessness and economic barriers to the workforce by providing the resources and support needed to prepare for, find, and retain employment. Since 1984, Chrysalis has served more than 71,000 individuals at its five centers and locations throughout Southern California. During 2020 and throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, more than 1,500 Chrysalis clients secured employment while participating in Chrysalis’ program and more than 1,500 participants worked a transitional job with the organization’s social enterprise. Learn more at ChangeLives.org.
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