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23-year old Raihannah and her 2-year old daughter haven’t had it easy. They’ve been staying at the Fresno EOC Sanctuary and Support Services Youth Bridge Housing in downtown Fresno for nearly six months. Raihannah says she has been through a tough emotional and physical journey just trying to stay afloat. “Before Sanctuary, I didn’t have anything. Nothing. Not even a car. Just me and my daughter. Slowly but surely, my situation has been improving.”Employees from several Fresno EOC programs leveraged their resources to help Raihannah get back on her feet. April Lobush, who works in Fresno EOC Training and Employment Services, helped Raihannah enroll in a new CVS Health Internship, which is part of the CVS Health Zones initiative. “Raihannah was actually doing some in-home health care prior to this. So, I think caring for others is in her. She’s a good momma. I believe she’s a caregiver at heart.”

The goal of the internship is to introduce young people in the 93721 zip code to careers in the medical field. Patrick Turner is the Senior Assistant Director for Fresno EOC Training and Employment Services which manages the internship. “CVS Health conducted a study that found, the 93721 zip code where Sanctuary’s Youth Bridge Shelter is located, is lacking in youth who are entering medical careers. As a result, they are providing a one-time grant to Fresno EOC to provide a first-time career exploration opportunity.” Raihannah is one of four CVS interns earning $15 per hour.

 

Raihannah’s internship has her working at Fresno EOC Health Services. Her duties include COVID-19 testing and outreach. “I collect samples from individuals with a swab and I also run the tests. I’ve also worked with families enrolled in Fresno EOC Health Services Home Visitation Services, going to different communities in Fresno County, like Coalinga, with a case worker and we help families with access to vital services and provide them with diapers and other basic necessities.”

 

Raihannah recently learned she will also be helping out with Fresno EOC’s new Monkeypox (MPX) vaccine clinics. Julio Romero, Assistant Director of Health Services says, “She will travel with a registered nurse to different clinics where they will administer the vaccine. In addition, Raihannah also provided feedback for a comprehensive sex education curriculum we are starting at Fresno Unified School District, giving us a young person’s perspective. We want to expose her to our whole Health Services department. We have many different services and opportunities related to health. So, this allows her to determine which field she likes best and which one she might pursue.”

 

Raihannah says she is interested in pursuing a career in health services. “I do love it. I love caregiving. It’s nice to help someone. And if they’re happy and satisfied, it makes me happy.”

 

The CVS Health Internship is 200 hours. While Raihannah is working, her daughter is being cared for at Fresno EOC Head Start 0 to 5. Her toddler attends the Jane Addams Child Development Center free of charge.

 

For media inquiries, please contact Claudia.solis@fresnoeoc.org.

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