In this video series, RISE AmeriCorps Members are taking us along to their host sites across Iowa. Mariely Perales is key in supporting the Spanish-speaking community in small-town, Hampton Iowa. Watch to learn more about Mariely, La Luz Centro Cultural and their service to empower Latino communities.
From serving the Sudanese immigrant community to receiving resources to excel in the medical career, Fatima is is sharing her life-changing journey as RISE AmeriCorps Member at Kirkwood Community College in Iowa City.
RISE AmeriCorps Member Sayri Reyna gives us a look into her service at the City of Columbus Junction and how she's adapting to meet immigrant and refugees' needs everyday.
RISE AmeriCorps Members at Kirkwood Community College are bridging the divide between immigrants and refugees and programs to help them fill quality, in-demand jobs. Since summer 2021, a partnership between Iowa Workforce Development (IWD) and Kirkwood’s TRIO Student Support Services program has forged the way for more immigrants and refugees to enter the workforce.
“At Kirkwood, the benefit of our program is that we’re really connected to the students and the community here,” TRIO ESL Director Mallory Petsche said. “We started this partnership because there was a gap between the community accessing and knowing these programs IowaWORKS has.”
RISE AmeriCorps Members and Kirkwood’s TRIO program collaborate regularly with IWD Workforce Consultant Shane Greve. Greve meets one-on-one with Kirkwood students and discusses IWD’s wide array of services that assist with tuition, childcare, transportation, job searches, career planning and more. IWD programs such as GAP grant Iowans the funds to train and enter in-demand jobs. Certified nursing assistant (CNA) training is a particularly popular pathway among the Kirkwood community, which is helping to fill a shortage of care workers in Iowa.