Frequently Asked Questions

General Program Information

Caring4Cal is a program funded by Healthcare Access and Information (HCAI) to expand, enhance, and strengthen California's Home- and Community-Based Services (HCBS).

The Caring4Cal program provides

  • hundreds of free training courses
  • free career coaching
  • incentives of up to $2,750

Participants in Caring4Cal must be in one of the eligible job roles highlighted in the eligibility section OR be working to become an eligible provider in an eligible home- or community-based setting in order to take courses and claim incentives

No. There are no costs to participants. The Caring4Cal program is free.

Cell-Ed coaches will help with some logistics and provide additional support. Caring4Cal participants can call the helpline at 1-844-425-1516 to talk to a coach.

Eligibility

Current licensed and/or certified or eligible providers or Community Health Workers (see eligible job roles below) who work or work as a supervised volunteer in home- or community-based settings OR people interested in becoming an eligible provider in a home- or community-based setting.

You must live in California and be 16 years of age or older.

Eligible Job Roles

  • Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)
  • Home Health Aide (HHA)
  • Registered Nurse (RN)
  • Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN)
  • Community Health Workers (CHW) (in a home setting ONLY)*
  • Respiratory Therapists
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Speech Therapists
  • Physical Therapists
  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker
  • Dental Hygienists
  • Other licensed/certified HCBS healthcare professionals

*Caring4Cal Eligible Community Health Worker job titles below

  • Breastfeeding Peer Counselor
  • Community Diabetes Educator
  • Community Health Liaison for Refugees
  • Community Health Representative
  • Community Health Worker
  • Community Mental Health Navigator
  • Community Social Worker
  • Disability Support Advocate
  • Elderly Care Coordinator
  • Mental Health Peer Support Specialist
  • Patient Advocate
  • Promotora or Promotor de Salud
  • Social Services Liaison
  • Substance Abuse Peer Counselor
  • Veterans Health Advocate

A home- or community-based setting refers to a living arrangement where individuals receive care, support, and services in their own homes or in a community setting rather than in an institutional facility like a hospital or nursing home. This setting is designed to promote independence, comfort, and a sense of belonging within a person's familiar environment.

Examples of home- and community-based setting includes Adult Day Care, AIDS Waiver, Assisted Living Waiver, provider Resource Centers, Community-Based Adult Services, Home and Community-Based Alternatives Waiver, Multipurpose Senior Services Program, Program for All Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE), Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly (RCFE)

  • Hospitals (e.g., rehabilitation long term care, and psychiatric hospitals)
  • Nursing Home
  • Inpatient Facility
  • Outpatient Clinic
  • Intermediate Care Facilities

Note - Those who work in an institutional setting do qualify for the Caring4Cal program, but must intend to switch to working or supervised volunteering in a home- or community-based setting.

Yes. Caring4Cal is an opportunity for those interested in becoming an eligible provider in a home- or community-based setting even without experience. Those who are interested can take courses, receive free career coaching, and apply for incentives.

In order to qualify for the Level 3 incentive, several options for eligibility are available. Go to the “Get Paid” page on Caring4Cal.org for more information and details.

Only if they are interested in switching jobs to work in home- or community-based settings.
Note: They can only qualify for the Level 3 incentive if they have switched to work, or work as a supervised volunteer, in a home- or community-based setting. They must work, or work as a supervised volunteer, for 40 hours/month for 4 months since November 1, 2023, with the most recent month being in a home- or community-based setting.

No, unless they want to become an eligible provider such as a Home Health Aide (HHA), Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) , Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN), Registered Nurse (RN), Community Health Worker (CHW), and work in-home or community-based settings. For the list of eligible job roles that qualify for Caring4Cal see the “Eligibility” FAQs.

Direct care workers can qualify for Caring4Cal if they intend to work towards becoming an eligible provider in a home- or community-based setting. Direct care workers qualify for the Track 1 incentives. However, to qualify for Level 3 incentives in Track 1, direct care workers must show proof of earning or working towards licensure/certification in an eligible job role.

Yes. However, potential providers must commit to working towards becoming an eligible provider in home- and community-based settings.

You are still eligible to take courses and claim Levels 1 and 2 under Track 1 only. You may be able to claim Level 3 in Track 1 if you take the steps towards licensure/certification.

To update your license or certificate status, you can take the necessary steps with the State of California. Some Caring4Cal courses may qualify to help you do this. Go to the Caring4Cal course catalog for more information on courses for licensure or certification.

Yes, however, courses taken in CalGrows do not qualify for Caring4Cal. Only courses taken through Caring4Cal qualify for Caring4Cal incentives.

Caring4Cal Courses

To find out if you are eligible for Caring4Cal, review our program eligibility requirements.

Yes! Caring4Cal training courses are worth taking for a variety of reasons, especially for providers of older adults and people with disabilities or those interested in becoming a provider.

Participants will be able to search for courses on Caring4Cal.org/coursecatalog. Each course page has a link to register directly with the training provider.

There is no cost to take Caring4Cal courses.

New courses will be added throughout the program. Check back often to see newly added courses. Courses will be listed as they become available.

Courses will cover a variety of topics from providing care in the home to dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, to communication skills and English language learning.

Courses will be available in English and/or Spanish. Some courses may be offered in Arabic, Chinese (Simplified), Haitian, Haitian Creole, Korean, Mandarin, Polish, or Russian. Additional languages may be added as they become available. Refer to the course description for details on languages offered.

Depending on the training partner, Caring4Cal participants could take courses to work toward certification or licensure. Use the “Certification/Licensure Program” filter on the Provider Training page to search for available trainings.

Yes. Each training provider will offer a certificate of completion for course hours taken. This certificate is proof for claiming Level 1 and Level 2 incentives.

Courses are offered in a variety of formats to meet the diverse needs of participants. Some courses are online and available anytime or at set times, others are in-person and instructor led.

In-person and scheduled online courses may be offered throughout the week during the day or in the evening. Self-paced online courses can be taken at any time on any day.

Courses are offered until May 2024. Many courses offer multiple sessions, and some online courses are self paced allowing Caring4Cal participants to start anytime.

In the course catalog, Caring4Cal participants can search courses in a number of ways, such as job track, certification/licensure program, training type, topic, language, training format (in-person, online self-paced, online instructor-led, hybrid), etc.

Course length varies. Course length will be listed on each course description page in the Caring4Cal course catalog. Please note to qualify for certain incentives, providers or potential providers will have to take a minimum of 15 hours for Level 1 and an additional 15 hours of coursework for Level 2.

There is no limit on the number of courses. You can take multiple courses at one time.

Some courses have a maximum capacity and may fill up quickly. Caring4Cal participants will want to register as soon as possible. Some online courses are more flexible with capacity. Capacity limits for each course can be found in the Caring4Cal course catalog. If a course's registration status is marked as closed, the capacity of the class has been reached and is not available anymore.

Yes, participants can take courses in a county outside of where they live. As participants search through for courses in the Caring4Cal course catalog, they can review each course's eligibility requirements to confirm if they can take the class.

No. The courses are offered by a variety of training partners. There will be no central place to see all attendance across all training partners. Caring4Cal participants will need to track their coursework and hours themselves.

Caring4Cal Helpline and Coaching

Caring4Cal participants will speak to a live person and receive support with questions about the Caring4Cal website, finding, selecting and registering for courses, and how the incentives work. The helpline can set Caring4Cal participants up for a call with a coach and assist them with resources.

Coaches will support Caring4Cal participants with career planning such as exploring healthcare careers and pursuing new professional pathways. Additionally, coaches can help Caring4Cal participants with a range of topics. All coaching sessions will be done remotely by phone calls and texts.

Coaches can help with:

  • Program support & program goals
    • Course recommendations & course scheduling
    • Incentive goals
  • Program and career goal setting
    • Career development and planning within the caregiver space

Coaches use active listening and motivational interviewing techniques to help guide the caregiver in identifying an action plan and building self-efficacy.

Coaches will also help with questions about the Caring4Cal website, finding courses, registering for a course, or joining a webinar.

Coaching services are provided by HCAI’s partner Cell-Ed. Coaches are not social workers and are not affiliated with HCAI.

Cell-Ed coaches come from different educational backgrounds and experiences such as:

  • Adult Educators & ESL instructors
  • International Coaching Federation Trained
  • Trained in Trauma-Informed Approaches
  • Life Coaches and Social Workers
  • Lived Experience as:
    • Parents to children
    • Adult Learners
    • Caregivers for family/friend/older adult
Yes. Cell-Ed coaches are available to provide support with the website.

Caring4Cal participants can call the helpline at 1-844-425-1516 to talk to a coach. If you already have a coach assigned, you can contact them directly by text.

Incentives

The Caring4Cal program has two incentive tracks: 

  • Track 1: Do not have a current license or certification in an eligible job role but intend work towards one. Must intend to work or volunteer*, in a home- or community-based setting.
  • Track 2: Currently is a Community Health Worker or has a current license or certification in an eligible job role and works, or intends to work or volunter*, in a home- or community-based setting.

Current providers or potential providers can earn up to $2,750. Note - Participants may claim each incentive level once in EITHER Track 1 OR Track 2. Refer to the "Get Paid" page for more information and eligibility for Tracks 1 and 2.  

Please note there is a limited amount of funding available for the incentive program. Once the program runs out of funding, incentives will no longer be available. Therefore, it is best to complete the incentive payments claim as soon as eligible.

If participants have questions about the incentives tracks and eligibility, they can call the helpline at 1-844-425-1516 to talk to a coach or text their coach if they have already been assigned to one.

*Volunteers must be under direct supervision

The Caring4Cal program is for current providers and those interested in an eligible job role who work, or intend to work or work as a supervised volunteer, in-home and community-based settings (HCBS).

Those who qualify for incentives are individuals who:

  • Are 16 years of age or older
  • Intend to earn a license/certificate and intend to work or volunteer* in an HCBS OR
  • Have a current license/certificate, work or volunteer* in an institutional setting and plan to switch to HCBS OR
  • Have a current license/certificate, work or volunteer* in an HCBS, and want to enhance their skills OR
  • Are a Community Health Worker (CHW) or intend to be a CHW and work or volunteer* in a home-based setting or intend to work or volunteer* in a home-based setting OR
  • Have a license/certificate and have earned another license/certificate in an eligible job role since November 1, 2023.

* Volunteers must be under direct supervision.

The Caring4Cal program goes through May 2024. Caring4Cal participants can claim incentives at any time. Claims must be submitted at https://app.bybeam.co/caring4cal by the end of the day on May 31, 2024. No new applications will be accepted after that date. Qualifying incentives may be paid out after that date, depending on when the claim was submitted and approved. 

Please note there is a limited amount of funding available for the incentive program. Once the program runs out of funding, incentives will no longer be available. Therefore, it is best to complete the incentive payments claim as soon as eligible.

You can submit an incentive claim using this secure portal https://app.bybeam.co/caring4cal/signup. Keep in mind that you may need to provide proof of employment or supervised volunteering, proof of licensure/certification, and proof of course completion. Note - Participants may claim each incentive level once in EITHER Track 1 OR Track 2.

The information needed for incentive claims will depend on the incentive level being claimed. However, Caring4Cal participants should prepare to provide the following:

  • proof of course completion 
  • proof of employment or supervised volunteering - completed Employment/Supervised Volunteer Verification Form OR
  • proof of registration for an eligible license/certification exam OR
  • proof of current licensure/certification OR 
  • proof of registration/application to coursework towards an eligible license or certification 

Caring4Cal participants will also need to provide tax information, including social security number or ITIN, and home and mailing addresses, if different.

Please note there is a limited amount of funding available for the incentive program. Once the program runs out of funding, incentives will no longer be available. Therefore, it is best to complete the incentive payments claim as soon as eligible.

 
TrackLevel 3 Eligibility QualifiersLevel 3 Accepted Documentation
Track 1Proof of employment or supervised volunteering in an eligible job role and setting in California for at least 40 hours for one month since November 1, 2023. *Employment/ Supervised Volunteer Verification Form completed by your employer(s). No other form of proof will be accepted.
Track 1OR  Proof of registration for license/certification exam *Email or letter of registration for exam. Email should include the type of license or certification, date, and who the exam will be through. Email must be dated on or after November 1, 2023.Proof must be for one of the eligible job roles.
Track 1OR Proof of earned eligible license/certification during the Caring4Cal program period *

Copy of a California issued License or Certificate (e.g. CDPH-issued CNA certification)License will have the type of certification, role,  certificate number, date issued (issue on/after November 1, 2023), date of expiration (must not be expired).Proof must be for one of the eligible job roles.

Employee badge is not accepted.

Track 1OR Proof of registration for, or application to, coursework toward a license or certification in an eligible job role. *

Registration of coursework through Caring4Cal qualifies.

Courses listed must be towards earning a certificate/license in an eligible job role.

Examples of enrollment in courses:

  • a confirmation email from training provider
  • received certificates for courses taken
  • transcript

Approved registration or application to a program

  • email
  • letter
Track 1

OR Community Health Worker (CHW) Only - in home-based setting only and provide proof of the following:

  • Standing offer of employment OR proof of starting a job or active employment or supervised volunteering as a CHW in-home setting only*
  • Schedule or anticipated schedule of work or supervised volunteering*
  • Supervisor confirmation*
Employment/ Supervised Volunteer Verification Form completed by your employer(s). No other form of proof will be accepted.
Track 2Proof of working or supervised volunteering for 40 hours a month in California in an eligible job role for 4 months or more since November 1, 2023, with the most recent month in a qualifying job setting.  Community Health Workers (CHW) must be in a home-based setting only. *Employment/ Supervised Volunteer Verification Form completed by your employer(s). No other form of proof will be accepted.
Track 2OR Proof of earning new eligible license/certification (CNA earning an HHA, HHA earning an LVN, etc.)*

Copy of a California issued License or Certificate (e.g. CDPH-issued CNA certification). License/Certificate must be dated on or after November 1, 2023, and must be new/different from the original license/certification.

Proof must be for one of the eligible job roles.

*Must occur during the Caring4Cal Program period, starting November 1, 2023 and be in California.

Application approval depends on if all correct documentation needed is provided by the Caring4Cal participant in a timely manner and if the participant is eligible for the level they are applying for in the portal. After submitting an application you can check on the status at https://app.bybeam.co/caring4cal/login. If an application is sent back for more information, the participant will be notified by email.

Each training partner will provide proof that a participant completed coursework. This proof will be used to verify an incentive claim.

Yes. Each training provider will offer a certificate of completion for course hours taken. For courses longer than 30 hours, you will receive a certificate at 15 and 30 hours. The training provider will provide a certificate to ensure you can claim incentives.

It may take up to 45 business days AFTER a payment claim has been approved to receive an incentive payment.

Participants will receive their incentive payments by check or direct deposit (ACH).

Yes, any incentive payment earned from Caring4Cal is considered reportable income.

Each Caring4Cal participant should review how the incentive payments may impact the income limits of various programs and benefits. We recommend they contact each program individually to determine any possible impacts to their benefits.

The HCAI and Caring4Cal coaches are not able to provide specific advice regarding how payments may impact any individual’s public benefits programs.

Yes. Please note, taxes will not be taken out of most incentive payments. Caring4Cal participants should set aside monies for taxes as needed.

All disputes will be handled between the Caring4Cal participant and the administrator of the Caring4Cal program.