The GAIN program provides employment-related services to CalWORKs participants to help them find employment, stay employed, and move on to higher paying jobs, which will lead to self-sufficiency and independence.
NEW RULES FOR CalWORKs GAIN/REP ACTIVITIES
POST-TIME LIMIT SERVICES
Note: The minimum 32 hours per month JI participation requirement is in addition to other approved PTL activities.
ORIENTATION AND APPRAISAL
After registration, participants are scheduled to attend a one-day orientation and appraisal process which includes:
SELF-INITIATED PROGRAM (SIP)
A SIP is a program in which a CalWORKs participant was enrolled in a vocational education/training program, prior to his/her GAIN Orientation/Appraisal appointment date. The participant may continue in the program as a WtW activity, when the program is for an undergraduate degree or certificate program that leads to employment or a post-baccalaureate degree program for a California teaching credential and the participant is making satisfactory progress.
The participant must be participating in the SIP and/or related activities such as lab and work-study (for a combined total of 20/30/35 hours per week) or be required to participate concurrently in Job Search activity or another WtW activity to meet the weekly participation requirement.
To be an approvable SIP, the education/training program must be listed in the Los Angeles County's List of Approved Self-Initiated Programs Education/Training Programs:
Once all the initial activities have been negotiated by the participant and the GSW, the participant is referred to the appropriate WtW activity and provided with the appropriate supportive services.
The Learning Disability (LD) program improves services to GAIN participants who may have hidden disabilities that prevent him/her from obtaining and/or retaining a job. The program offers a screening for LD, and LD evaluation, and reasonable accommodations to assist the participant with participation in GAIN activities. Participants with a verified LD will be provided with written documentation of accommodations needed to perform effectively in the classroom and/or on the job competitively, with classmates and/or coworkers.
JOB CLUB/JOB SEARCH
The Los Angeles County GAIN Program provides a four-week Job Readiness & Career Planning Services Program, known as Enhanced Job Club/Vocational Assessment Program (EJC/VA). This assists participants with job preparation and/or enrollment in an educational/training program with the ultimate goal of obtaining, securing, and/or promoting, to employment at a living wage.
EJC/VA consists of a one-week job preparation and planning seminar to develop a career goal plan as an employment guide, a three-week Job Search activity.
During the second week of EJC/VA, job search is focused on targeted jobs with a living wage. Job search in the third week is focused on targeted occupations that have documented potential for growth that will lead to a living wage. The fourth week is concentrated on identifying and enrolling participants in an educational/training activity to be combined with part-time employment.
The EJC/VA begins with an orientation of the three-week job club process, and the participant learns about work behaviors and attitudes, employer expectations, participation, dress codes, earnings disregards, and the working parents budget, goal setting progress, etc. The participant also learns how to prepare an effective resume for job searches, and completes extensive interview preparation administered by Job Club staff.
Enhanced Job Club services include job-finding skills workshops and closely supervised job search. These services are provided to GAIN participants by a contracted services provider at different locations throughout Los Angeles County.
If the participant does not obtain full-time employment during or after the Friday of the 3rd week of Job Club services, he/she will be referred directly to vocational assessment before assignment to any other GAIN activity.
The participant's employment plan will be developed by the assessor and the GAIN participant using the participant's existing educational level, employment experience, employment goals, and vocational assessment test results. The employment plan will specify the employment goal to be attained under the program, as well as the service(s) needed to achieve the employment goal including counseling/treatment services to remove barriers caused by mental health, substance abuse, or domestic violence problems.
The Welfare-to-Work (WtW) plan is developed by the GSW and the participant using the vocational assessment employment plan and/or any clinical assessment. This WtW plan may include Job Search services, work experience, education/training, job skills training directly related to employment, mental health treatment, substance abuse treatment and/or domestic violence treatment.
All non-exempt participants are required to sign their initial WtW plan within 90 calendar days of their determination of eligibility for CalWORKs cash aid. The 90 days also applies to participants with expiring exemptions.
The 90-day period to develop a WtW plan includes time participating in learning disability screenings, medical evaluations (e.g., when a GN 6051, verification of GAIN Exemption, is being completed), and third-party assessments.
Job Search services are for those participants who have completed a four to five-week Enhanced Job
Work Experience (WEX) activity is a work assignment in which a participant receives non-salaried experience in a public or private nonprofit agency. Work experience assignments provide training in appropriate work behavior skills, the acquisition of new skills, the enhancement of existing skills or recently acquired skills and employment references to use when seeking salaried employment.
PAID WORK EXPERIENCE
Paid Work Experience (PWE) is subsidized employment offered to participants enrolled in WtW programs presented by the Workforce Investment Boards (WIBs), One-Stop Centers and Department of Labor (DOL) WtW grantees. This activity provides occupational training to enable the participant to learn a skill and to qualify for an occupation through demonstration of abilities and practices.
JOB SKILLS TRAINING DIRECTLY RELATED TO EMPLOYMENT
Job Skills Training Directly Related to Employment (JST) is a non-core GAIN activity which may be considered as a core activity, if it meets the following criteria:
Vocational Education/Training is assigned if the vocational assessment employment plan specifies that vocational education or training is needed to achieve the participants’ employment goal. The primary goal for assigning a participant to these services is to improve their existing skills or obtain new skills required to move the participant into full-time employment.
MENTAL HEALTH/SUBSTANCE ABUSE/DOMESTIC VIOLENCE TREATMENT
A new range of supportive services is now offered to participants identified as having a barrier to employment caused by problems with domestic violence, mental health and/or substance abuse. Further information related to these supportive services can be found under Specialized Supportive Services. See Specialized Supportive Services.
Most participants secure initial, entry-level jobs with wages too low to eliminate their need for welfare benefits. Post-Employment Services are designed to help participants stay employed and attain a better job with sufficient wages to obtain self-sufficiency from CalWORKs dependency.
The goal is to provide participants with the information, resources, and tools to retain unsubsidized employment, improve career potential, and achieve economic self-sufficiency at a living wage prior to exhausting their time on aid. To this end, an array of post-employment services is offered.
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