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HCA Training Program

Program Overview

With funding provided by the Government of Canada through the Canada-British Columbia Workforce Development Agreement, BC Care Providers Association (BCCPA) will be training health care assistants in Kelowna, Nanaimo, Parksville, South Okanagan and West Kootenays regions. Students enrolled in the program will receive skills training by way of the provincially approved curriculum for health care assistants, delivered in partnership with Discovery Community College.

In partnership with the Community Workforce Response Grant (CWRG), BCCPA will cover the entire cost of tuition for participants, as well as provide additional training supports.

Program participants will receive skills training by way of the provincially approved curriculum for HCAs. The program will be delivered over the course of 38 weeks, including 21 weeks for classroom theory and lab skills hours and 12 weeks for practice education. Training will be delivered three days a week for the classroom theory portion of the program, with varying clinical practice schedules. In total, the entire program consists of 780 hours of training.

BCCPA has gained strong support for this initiative from several employers in each region. All participating employers have part-time or full-time positions available in their organizations. Following the completion of the skills training program, BCCPA will host a hiring fair and job connections for participating employers and program graduates.

Eligibility Criteria

Participants must:

  • currently reside in B.C.;
  • be 16 years of age or older;
  • be Canadian citizens, permanent residents or protected persons entitled to work in Canada;
  • be in possession of a valid Social Insurance Number (SIN);
  • be unemployed, or employed part-time*, seasonally, casually, or precariously**;
  • have not participated in any other CWRG funded training projects in the last 12 months or be currently enrolled in any other federally or provincially funded training programs at the start of the project;

*Part-time is defined as those employed 30 hours or less per week.
**Precariously is defined as those who are employed but at risk of losing a job and in need of training for a new job.

Discovery Community College Admissions Prerequisites

The above are the minimum grant eligibility requirements potential participants must meet before moving forward with the application process.

Additional admission requirements are set by Discovery Community College in line with their standard admission prerequisites, including:

  • Grade 12 graduation or mature student status (19+)
  • Meet English language competency requirements:
    • Proof of completion of Grade 10 English or higher for native speakers
    • Proof of standardized English language assessment test for non-native speakers

For General College Admissions Enquiries:

Phone: 1-877-315-5241
Email: jennyfer.guzman@discoverycollege.ca

How to Apply

If you meet the minimum CWRG eligibility & Discovery Community College core admissions requirements, please complete BCCPA’s intake request form to apply.

Key Dates

Pre-screening/interviews: Beginning September 2022

Skills training dates:

  • Kelowna: November 28, 2022 – August 25, 2023 (New date!)
  • Nanaimo & Parksville: November 30, 2022 – August 25, 2023
  • South Okanagan & West Kootenays: December 14, 2022 – September 8, 2023 (New date!)

Hiring fair: Held post-program completion.

Information Session

Click here to view a copy of the info session slides.

FAQs

The CWRG provides funding for communities and industries to support in-demand skills training leading to secure and sustainable employment for unemployed or underemployed (part-time, seasonal or casual) British Columbians. Funding is provided by the Government of Canada through the Canada-British Columbia Workforce Development Agreement.
BCCPA received its funding from the Government of Canada through the Canada-British Columbia Workforce Development Agreement to train health care assistants through the HCA Diploma Program at Discovery Community College. The funding allows BCCPA to cover the entire cost of tuition for participants, as well as provide additional training-related supports to help eliminate barriers. Students enrolled in the program will receive skills training by way of the provincially approved curriculum for health care assistants. They will benefit from enhanced occupational health and safety training.
Discovery Community College’s HCA Diploma Program is designed to provide students with opportunities to develop the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary to function effectively as front-line caregivers and respected members of the health care team. Under the direction and supervision of a health professional, graduates provide person-centred care aimed at promoting and maintaining the physical, emotional, cognitive, and social well-being of clients. Those who choose careers as HCAs are looking to help other people and make a difference. Learn more about becoming an HCA at www.choose2care.ca or visit the FAQ section on our Health Human Resources information page here.
BC Care Providers Association and Discovery Community College are working hard to ensure that students are set up for success during COVID-19. The classroom theory portion of the training will be delivered primarily through an online learning format. Students will also attend supplementary in-class sessions on a rotational basis to offer face-to-face learning opportunities with their instructor while adhering to social distancing guidelines. The practical component of the program will be conducted at participating care homes that remain outbreak free.
Due to current orders mandated by B.C. health officials, all students entering the HCA Training Program will be required to be fully vaccinated* against COVID-19, except where a permitted medical reason exists**. As clinical will take place in long-term care and assisted living settings, this mandate protects staff, families, and vulnerable residents in care.

*If you are not yet fully vaccinated but intend to meet this requirement, please consult Discovery Community College for deadlines on meeting this pre-requisite.
**Medical exemptions are determined by B.C. Health Officials and BCCPA cannot guarantee any exemptions will be made. Learn more about scope of medical exemptions here.

Last updated: November 15, 2021
The program will be delivered over the course of 38 weeks, including 21 weeks for classroom theory and lab skills hours and 12 weeks for practice education. Training will be delivered three days a week for the classroom theory portion of the program, with varying clinical practice schedules. In total, the entire program consists of 780 hours of training.
Through the onset and completion of the program and finding employment in the field, grant recipients will share their participant success story, which will be published to highlight how the program has benefitted them. Further, students will be expected to complete a mid-term program evaluation and final student outcomes survey.
As a CWRG recipient, you will receive financial support for skills training and other eligible training supports, to help eliminate any barriers and support your success in the program. The skills training funding for the HCA Program is up to $10,000 per participant. In addition, up to $5,000 in funds will be granted to each participant towards other supports for costs incurred from participation in the program, such as such as childcare, transportation and other eligible training-related expenses.
Upon completion of Discovery Community College’s HCA Diploma Program, graduates will be prepared to work in a variety of practice settings, including home support, assisted living, long-term care, special care units, other home and community care settings, and acute care. As our population ages, demand for senior care services continues to increase, meaning that HCAs are one of the fastest-growing occupations in all regions of British Columbia, as well as across Canada, with high job prospects. The B.C. Ministry of Health has identified that HCAs are a priority health occupation and has set a target to recruit an additional 3,000 HCAs to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.