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Latinx in Social Work Amplifies Stories of Challenges and Successes of Hispanic Social Workers

Anthology presents 21 authors who inspire and heal communities

New York–based social worker Erica Priscilla Sandoval, LCSW, found a very interesting statistic when it comes to Hispanics in the social work field. According to socialworkers.org, “Latinxs are the largest ethnic minority in the U.S., yet only 14% of social workers are Latinx.”

“When I saw that statistic, I needed to know why that was such a low number,” says Sandoval, founder of Sandoval CoLab, a psychotherapy and consulting group. “As I talked with my colleagues, I uncovered stories of racism, bias, and discrimination, but also how they healed communities with the hard, difficult, and rewarding work that they put in each day. That’s when I realized that we in the Latinx community needed to share these stories and educate the next generation.”

Sandoval gathered 21 peers to share their personal stories of challenges and successes in her new anthology book, Latinx in Social Work: Stories That Heal, Inspire and Connect Communities, published by Fig Factor Media. The book is a No. 1 Best Seller on Amazon.

“The book is an eye-opener to highlight Latinx contributors to the quality of life for New Yorkers, gives a blueprint for younger generations of social workers, and presents inspiration for all in a quest for social justice and equality,” she says. “This is a tribute to all the healers regardless of their field of practice. We are more than a monolithic representation. It highlights the journey and the beauty of a culture that is colorful and expansive. I am in awe of the brilliant authors serving our Latinx community.”

The 21 authors who contributed their stories are Rosa M. Bramble Caballero, LCSW-R; Rosa M. Gil, DSW; Maria Elena Girone, MSW; Linda Lausell Bryant, MSW, PhD; Maria Lizardo, LMSW; Laura Quiros, PhD, LMSW; Cindy Bautista-Thomas, PhD, LCSW, RYT; Laudy Burgos, LCSW-R; Edith Chaparro, PhD, LCSW-R; Karen Ciego, LCSW; Jasmin Collazo, DSW, LCSW; Andres Gomez, MSW; Jessica Hardial, LCSW, MA; Yurilka A. Hernandez, LCSW; Luisa Lopez, MSW; Madeline Maldonado, LCSW-R; Ingrid McFarlane, LCSW-R; Paula McMillan-Perez, LCSW; Amelia Ortega, LCSW; Maria E. Ortiz, MA, LMSW; and Tania Vargas, LCSW.

To encourage the Latinx community to enter social work, Sandoval explained that partial proceeds from the book will support social work students through scholarships and licensing exam fees for social workers applying for the licensure. She credits the generous support of The New York Women's Foundation and the Fund for The City of New York for making these financial avenues possible.

“We are in dire need of more Latinx social workers,” she says. "Our community needs us.”

Lopez, a featured author and president of the Latino Social Work Coalition and Scholarship Fund, is cognizant of the positive impact this book will have for readers.

“I am honored that the Latino Social Work Coalition and Scholarship Fund was selected to be the recipient of book proceeds, which will go a long way in ensuring that there is a vibrant and robust pipeline of Latinx social work students ready and able to serve in our most vulnerable communities.”

Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer congratulated Sandoval, the Latino Social Work Coalition and Scholarship Fund, and all the contributing authors on the book launch.

"Social work professionals must be equipped to work with a population that increasingly speaks Spanish, lives in mixed immigration status households, and navigates government and social systems that further marginalize them,” Brewer says. “Latinx in Social Work and the advocacy of the Latino Social Work Coalition is sounding the alarm on the value of Latinx social workers and how vital it is that more Latinx people can afford to pursue a career in social work."

More information about Latinx in Social Work is available at latinxinsocialwork.com.

— Source: JJR Marketing


Uber Health Partners With Papa to Address Social Isolation Among Vulnerable Populations

After a year in which issues in the health care space were exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, addressing barriers to care for older adults—a particularly vulnerable community—has never been more important.

The older adult population worldwide is rapidly growing. According to data from McKinsey and the World Bank, there were more than 590 million people aged 65 and older in 2014, but by 2030, it is estimated this population will be at least 890 million people. As the older adult population continues to grow, it’s becoming increasingly clear there are still critical gaps in care left by the traditional health care ecosystem. These populations face rising rates of social isolation and loneliness—challenges amplified by a lack of access to reliable transportation and an unprecedented global pandemic. In fact, roughly one-half of adults consider themselves lonely and social isolation increases the risk of death by 29%.

The result has been worsening health outcomes for an already vulnerable population of Americans, who often feel alone and may not have easy access to their communities, health care professionals, and other important aspects of a healthy lifestyle, such as access to fresh groceries and medical prescriptions.

Enter Uber Health and Papa
Recognizing these important health care issues, Uber Health announces a strategic partnership with Papa, a nationwide provider that pairs older adults and families with trained Papa Pals. Papa Pals offer companionship and comfort for the older adults they are paired with, and also help around the house or with other tasks such as driving members to medical appointments or community events. Through this new partnership, Papa’s care coordinators can offer rides with Uber Health to Papa Pals and to Papa’s customers (e.g., health plan members), so they can easily and efficiently travel together to medical appointments, the grocery store, or even local events.

For example, Meena, a Papa Pal, may visit her Papa customer, Ravi, for a short hike near the beach and then take him to a weekly chiropractor appointment. With a ride with Uber Health, she can stress less about parking at both the beach and the crowded medical plaza, and instead focus on socializing with Ravi.

By extending access to efficient transportation solutions with the hundreds of thousands of drivers using Uber’s platform, Papa Pals will be able to spend more time with the older adults they work with and less time worrying about transportation logistics and parking. Beyond just moving from Point A to Point B, Papa and Uber Health will be able to make more one-to-one connections at scale, as Pals and members are able to spend more time focused on being together and fostering a close bond.

A Vision for a More Connected Future
By working closely with Papa, Uber Health is doubling down on addressing social determinants of health and focusing on communities often hit hardest by mobility accessibility issues. Since launching in 2018, Uber Health has worked alongside health care providers, nonemergency medical transportation brokers, and others in the continuum of care to coordinate rides for those who need it most—which include many older adults who find transportation a consistent barrier to accessing the care they need. With Papa, Uber Health is able to further expand its reach to these communities, and support Papa’s core mission of helping people live as they choose. Additionally, Uber Health will be able to augment its health plan partnerships with Papa.

The two companies envision a future where Papa and Uber Health partner broadly, beyond rides. Uber Health also has the ability to provide tech-enabled solutions that can address the holistic needs of the older adult population—including healthy meal, grocery delivery, and prescription delivery using the Uber Eats platform. Both Papa and Uber Health believe that interactions with older adults in the home, coupled with improving access to care through rides and delivery, will improve health outcomes for this population.

Ultimately, the two organizations aim to continue delivering innovative solutions to both Papa Pals and Papa members, bringing holistic health care solutions to the home, and boosting a sense of community, connectivity, and belonging among vulnerable communities in the United States.

More information is available at uberhealth.com and papa.health.

— Source: Uber Health