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Employment Facilitation News

Three Successfully Complete Accelerated CNA Training Program

Filed in Employment Facilitation News by on October 31, 2017


The CNA ( certified nursing assistant ) vocation offers tremendous growth opportunity in the San Diego region. In fact, CNA is considered an in-demand job by the local workforce development board. NSDI ( Nile Sisters Development Initiative ) facilitates accelerated 22-day CNA training for refugees, asylees / asylum seekers and other qualified individuals from underserved and disadvantaged backgrounds.

Between September and October 2017, three NSDI-sponsored trainees completed the CNA asset-building program. The participants hail from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the Republic of Haiti, and the United States. Their primary languages are Swahili, Haitian Creole, and Spanish. One additional student, originally from Jordan, is due to complete CNA training in November 2017.

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September, National Workforce Development Month

Filed in Employment Facilitation News by on September 6, 2017

The month of September is recognized nationally as Workforce Development Month», a period in which to highlight the efforts of professionals who play a pivotal role in promoting workforce development to meet the needs of local employers, apprenticeship programs, and job seekers.

As a member of the National Association of Workforce Development Professionals», Nile Sisters Development Initiative ( NSDI ) facilitates a healthcare workforce development program for economically and environmentally disadvantaged populations. The NSDI certified nursing assistant ( CNA ) program avails skill-building training to refugees and asylum seekers / asylees to generate a diverse, culturally and linguistically proficient healthcare workforce. Regarded as an in-demand job in the San Diego region, the CNA vocation serves as a pipeline to advanced healthcare careers. In 2016, of surveyed participants who completed the NSDI CNA program, 89% expressed interest in advancing their career in the healthcare field.

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New Education and Career Opportunities for Refugees and Asylees / Asylum Seekers in San Diego

Filed in Employment Facilitation News by on August 15, 2017


Current data from the County of San Diego indicate that unemployment rates for refugees remain high. Limited education and gainful career opportunities lead to short- and long-term disparities for such vulnerable communities.

Nile Sisters Development Initiative ( NSDI ) combats this challenge by availing asset-building programs, including training in careers projected to grow in the San Diego region and beyond. According to the San Diego Workforce Partnership», the number of health care jobs projected to be available in San Diego in five years is 19,105. The nursing-assistant vocation is one of the top five occupations in the healthcare industry. Refugees and asylees / asylum seekers who successfully complete the NSDI accelerated 22-day CNA ( certified nursing assistant ) program typically achieve employment within 60 days of program completion / certification.

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Nigerian Asylum Seeker Graduates Certified Nursing Assistant Program

Filed in Employment Facilitation News by on August 14, 2017

Julie O.* came to the United States from Nigeria in August 2015. A local attorney thought she would benefit from and recommended that Julie enroll in the accelerated 22-day CNA (certified nursing assistant) skill-building program that Nile Sisters Development Initiative ( NSDI ) facilitates.

Julie enjoys the nursing profession, has previously worked as a personal care giver, and has completed health care courses in addition to CNA classes. In July 2017, Julie successfully completed her CNA program and passed both portions of California State exam needed to earn her certification. She recently received a CNA job offer.

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New Cohort Enrolls in Employment Facilitation Program

Filed in Employment Facilitation News by on July 27, 2017

In July 2017, a new group of applicants from refugee and immigrant backgrounds participated in the Nile Sisters Development Initiative ( NSDI ) mandatory one-week orientation, which precedes an accelerated 22-day CNA ( certified nursing assistant ) training program. The CNA program allows newcomers and individuals from economically disadvantaged backgrounds to partake in asset-building training in order to attain gainful employment in the healthcare field, one of San Diego County’s in-demand job sectors. A total of 15 individuals, representing six countries on three different continents, expressed interest in the CNA program during the July orientation cycle.

Candidates who successfully complete their orientation will begin their August / September CNA training at an accredited training institution in either San Diego or El Cajon.

Nursing Trainee from Sudan Passes California Certification Exam

Filed in Employment Facilitation News by on May 12, 2017

Born in Sudan (present-day South Sudan), Suzy L. experienced hardships in her native country. Desiring more security to be happy and comfortable, sentiments she never achieved in her homeland, Suzy fled her war-torn country. On her journey to the United States, Suzy faced many financial and cultural challenges, but she was patient and worked hard to overcome the barriers.

Suzy contacted NSDI (Nile Sisters Development Initiative) and registered to participate in the CNA (certified nursing assistant) vocational training program. After completing the intensive 22-day course, Suzy passed the state exams and obtained employment at a hospital in the Sharp HealthCare system. Suzy hopes to progress in the healthcare industry and one day become an LVN (licensed vocational nurse). Her advice to others in similar situations is to always work hard, never give up, but be patient. Suzy hopes to visit South Sudan where her family still lives, but only after the current situation in the country de-escalates.

Congolese Refugee Earns Nursing Assistant Credentials

Filed in Employment Facilitation News by on April 26, 2017

Photo of new certified nursing assistant graduate

Aminata D. and her family are originally from Congo. Due to instability in Congo, the family sought refuge in Uganda, where they lived for five years, adjusting to a new environment and learning a different language.

In 2015, the family was resettled in San Diego. Then 26, Aminata worked in a restaurant to support her family. After a friend told Aminata about NSDI (Nile Sisters Development Initiative) asset-building programs, she enrolled in the CNA (certified nursing assistant) program. She successfully completed the 22-day program, passed the California Department of Public Health exams, and earned her CNA credentials.

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New Vocational Training Cohort Begins March 2017

Filed in Employment Facilitation News by on February 15, 2017

On February 1, 2017, Nile Sisters Development Initiative (NSDI) conducted two orientation sessions for the certified nursing assistant (CNA) vocational training program.» The mandatory workshops provide overview of the 22-day program to prospective participants. Between October 2016 and January 2017, forty-two individuals from diverse backgrounds placed their names on a waitlist to receive more information about the asset-building program. List members represent at least five countries, including Ethiopia, Congo, Haiti, Iraq, and Jordan. Since initiation of the employment facilitation program, NSDI has served individuals who have relocated to the US from 12 countries.

The program offers opportunities for refugees, asylees, and survivors of torture to gain skills in growing industries such as healthcare. Refugees face many challenges even after their resettlement in the United States. One critical challenge is economic hardship due to difficulties in obtaining gainful and sustainable employment. To alleviate this concern, NSDI partners with two accredited schools, International Health Group, School of Nursing and Western Medical Training Center to facilitate training for qualified individuals.

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Pramoda S., New Certified Nursing Assistant Graduate

Filed in Employment Facilitation News by on December 3, 2016

Photo of Pramoda F.

In 2014, Pramoda S., her husband, and two sons moved to the US from Nepal in order to take advantage of better opportunities. In the beginning, Pramoda experienced difficulties in navigating new systems due to limited knowledge of American customs. In Nepal, Pramoda had been a banker, but in the US, she struggled to understand diverse spoken accents of people she encountered. She didn’t know where to begin to apply for a job or to seek education or skill-training.

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Jercol X., New Certified Nursing Assistant Graduate

Filed in Employment Facilitation News by on December 2, 2016

Photo of Jercol X.

Growing up, Jercol X. and her family were persecuted for their Rwandan roots. They sought refuge in the Democratic Republic of Congo for twelve years before resettling as refugees in the United States. Although resettlement and adopting the American way of life were initially difficult, Jercol continued to persevere through school and build a new life for herself, mother, brother, and fourteen-year-old son.

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