WPSi Alumni Newsletter
Hey Alumni - we hope you're all hanging in there. We're sending virtual hugs your way! In this newsletter you'll find opportunities to virtually check in with WPSI staff and facilitators, updated community resources, and current job opportunities.

Be sure to text COVIDPHL to 888-777 to receive city updates on the virus to your phone or visit this link for constant updates at noon.
WPSI Survey
We hope that some of these opportunities and resources are helpful to you during this time. However, if they are not and your current needs are not reflected in our efforts we'd love to hear from you. Let us know how you're doing or how we can help by filling out a brief survey.
WPSI is Working Remotely 💻
In order to protect the safety and well-being of our community, the WPSI office is temporarily closed and the WPSI Staff will be working remotely until further notice. However, we are still here if you need us! Shoot an email to wpsi@universitycity.org if there is anything we can help you with.
Alumni Events and Programming
Virtual Coaching with Coach Kala
Coach Kala is offering the following online coaching services for WPSI Alumni only: 

Talk About it Tuesday’s with Coach Kala    
A Group Chat with WPSI Alumni where the topic is always YOU!  
When : Every Tuesday Evening at 7pm. The First Session will be on April 7th  
Where : BlueJeans  

One-on-One Coaching  
Coach Kala is also offering one-on-one coaching on Wednesdays and Thursdays.  
Tax Consultations with Enrolled Agent
In lieu of the last Tax Event, our facilitator Taylor Keitt, EA, will be providing phone consultations to assist you with any questions or guidance needed to file your taxes. Click here to sign up.
Get an Updated Resume from WPSI Staff 📃
If you are currently applying or looking for jobs in a new field, reach out to us in order to receive an updated resume! 

Directions for resumes:  
  1. In order to receive an updated resume we ask that you do the following:  
  2. Complete a short survey by clicking this link.
  3. Email the resume you received from WPSI to wpsi@universitycity.org.
  4. Email a link or copy of the description you are applying to to wpsi@universitycity.org 
  5. After all steps are complete, you will receive confirmation from WPSI that your resume is in progress. If we need any additional information from you, we will let you know.  

Resume updates will take 7-10 days. We will let you know if there is any change to that schedule!
Bright Invention | Improvademic 🎭
Bright Invention, the facilitators of our Improv session, is hosting a special online show on April 11th at 7:00 p.m. to raise money for healthcare workers! Click here for more information.
Brandon Everett | Virtual Mindfulness Meditation Classes
Brandon, our Mindfulness facilitator, is hosting virtual mindfulness sessions on Sunday and Monday evenings via Zoom. These classes are 100% FREE but donations are welcome. If you decide to attend, shoot us an email at wpsi@universitycity.org and we will donate on your behalf.

COVID-19 Information and Resources
City of Philadelphia | COVID-19 Specific Helpline
Residents are encouraged to call 1-800-722-7112 to access this free, 24/7 helpline. It is staffed by trained healthcare providers and is for anyone in the Greater Philadelphia area, including the public and healthcare professionals, to help answer questions about COVID-19.
City of Philadelphia | City Health Centers
All centers are open and operating regular hours. These centers see everyone, it doesn’t matter their immigration status, if they have insurance or not, or if they are proficient in English. Language translation services are available.
City of Philadelphia | Mental Health & Addiction Services
The Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disability Services (DBHIDS) wants those in need to know they can still receive support from the Department.

Pennsylvania Department of human Services | Mental Health Hotline
Pa. launches statewide helpline for those struggling with anxiety due to coronavirus. You can reach the hotline at 1-855-284-2494.

Income Assistance
Pennsylvania Unemployment & Workers' Compensation 💵
If you are out of work or losing hours because of COVID-19, you may qualify for Pennsylvania Unemployment Compensation. You may be eligible if:
  • Your employer temporarily closes or goes out of business because of COVID-19
  • Your employer reduces your hours because of COVID-19
  • You have been told not to work because your employer feels you might get or spread COVID-19
  • You have been told to quarantine or self-isolate, or live/work in a county under government-recommended mitigation efforts

Food Assistance
City of Philadelphia Department of Health | Free Food Distribution
Pick up a box of food (one per household) at food sites on Mondays and Thursdays from 10A-noon. No need to present an ID or proof of income for eligibility. Click here for more information.
City of Philadelphia Department of Public Health | SNAP Info
SNAP offices are closed to the public, but applications and paperwork are still being processed. There are drop boxes and paper copies of applications outside of the offices. Office locations can be found at the Hunger Coalition website. Click here for more information.
City of Philadelphia Department of Public Health | WIC Info
WIC (Woman, Infants and Children Program): WIC offices will be open Monday through Thursday from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. You will be able to load your eWIC card with 3 months of benefits while keeping a safe distance from others. You may also apply over the phone or send someone else to the office for you, but you need to call the WIC office ahead of time to notify them. This person should bring an ID with them. WIC office locations and phone numbers can be found at the Philadelphia WIC Program website. Click here for more information.
School District of Philadelphia | Student Meals
Grab and go meal sites for students are open from 9A-noon. Click here for the list of sites.
School District of Philadelphia | Chromebook Program
The District will loan a Chromebook to every District K-12 student who needs one for learning at home. The loaner program is free and there’s no obligation to participate. Click here for more details.
School District of Philadelphia | Internet Access
Internet access is crucial now more than ever. Several options worth exploring are found at the link below. Click here for more details.
City of Philadelphia | Emergency Housing
Assistance is and will be available to those who are homeless or facing imminent homelessness. People can use one of the Office of Homeless Services many access points to gain entry to shelter services. Click here for more information.
City of Philadelphia | Trash and Recycling Pick Up
As of April 6, recycling will be collected on an every-other-week schedule. There will be no recycling April 6-11. Collection will start the week of April 13 and continue every other week until at least May 15. Trash collection will continue on or close to schedule. Click here for more information.
SEPTA | Public Transportation
Rear boarding is enforced with the exception of boarding customers that require assistance. New scheduling is in effect, and some stations are closed. SEPTA is offering credits for unused and partially used Monthly March 2020 Passes and Weekly Passes for the Weeks of March 9th & March 16th (including those on Key Cards and University Semester Paper Legacy Passes). Click here for more information.
Community Legal Services | Renter's Rights
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ordered that there can be no eviction filings, no eviction hearings and no lockouts in Pennsylvania through May 1, 2020. Click here for more information.
Jobs and Professional Development Opportunities
Benefits Data Trust | Benefits Outreach Specialist (Remote Position)
Benefits Data Trust (BDT) is seeking Benefits Outreach Specialists to provide public benefits education and application assistance to low-income individuals.

If you have a commitment to serve others and love to solve problems, you’re already off to a great start for our BOS position, but that’s not all you’ll need. You’ll also need supreme customer service skills, outstanding time management, the ability to multi-task and practice empathy consistently. Due to the remote aspect of this position, proficient computer skills are required. You should be comfortable navigating technology and able to focus on a computer screen for long periods of time.

Pay and Benefits:
Last, but certainly not least, we offer a starting salary of $17/hr, a comprehensive health benefits package including medical, vision, and dental coverage, and a 401K with a 2% employer match. We offer 16 paid time off (PTO) days per year, which is prorated to your start date, in addition to 9 company paid holidays.
If you apply, please email proof of your application to wpsi@universitycity.org so that we can follow up on it. If you would like us to take a look at your resume before applying, please email wpsi@universitycity.org . However, we encourage you to apply as soon as possible.
Mercy Health | Patient Ambassador
Mercy Catholic Medical Center takes pride in delivering high-quality care with compassion, courtesy and respect. Mercy Fitzgerald Campus is currently seeking a full-time Patient Ambassador to serve as the model of service excellence to ensure that every patient and family member encounter is a positive experience. 

  • Provide a smile and warm greeting to all patients, family members, and visitors to the campus
  • Serve as the initial point of contact for all patients and guests arriving through the front entrance
  • Proactively anticipate the needs of all patients and guests, whenever possible.  
  • Provide timely resolution to all patient and guest concerns including directing patient complaints and grievances to the Service Excellence Leader for follow-up
  • Offer personalized services whenever possible in order to provide a "memorable" experience.
  • Explanation and enforcement of patient policies and procedures
  • Inspect facility for cleanliness and report areas of need to appropriate manager 
  • Communication and rapport with all MCMC colleagues to ensure an positive and uplifting work environment
  • Participation in special projects as needed
  • Knows, understands, incorporates, and demonstrates the Trinity Health Mission, Vision, and Values in behaviors, practices, and decisions.
  • Adheres to the conduct standards identified by MCMC Mercy Fitzgerald Campus

Pay and Benefits:
Pay range begins at $15/hour.
If you apply, please email proof of your application to wpsi@universitycity.org so that we can follow up on it. If you would like us to take a look at your resume before applying, please email wpsi@universitycity.org . However, we encourage you to apply as soon as possible.
If you have any questions regarding these opportunities please email Tiffany Smith here
Be sure to visit the our Instagram @westphilaskills for additional resources shared on our story and
COVID-19 Highlight.
Meet three graduates of University City District’s West Philadelphia Skills Initiative who are on the path to realizing their career dreams with Philadelphia employers:
Matt Bergheiser
University City District

Patrick Bayer
Manager, Continuous Improvement

Caitlin Garozzo
Senior Manager, Learning & Development

Fontaine Gutierrez
Operations Coordinator

Mariya Khandros
Project Manager
Sarah Steltz
Executive Director,
West Philadelphia Skills Initiative

Joshua Park
Senior Manager, Employer Services

Diamond Poyer
Manager, Training & Evaluation

Tiffany Smith
Alumni Services Coordinator

Romaine Thrower
Manager, Employer Services
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