SWFI grantees can co-enroll participants in multiple programs to increase enrollment in SWFI and provide their participants with more extensive training and supportive services. Understanding a participant’s eligibility across multiple programs can open up funding streams, increase access to supportive services while a participant receives training or works, and ensure greater stability for families.

Strengthening Working Families Initiative (SWFI) grantees can serve participants through leveraged federal resources, including Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and WIOA Title I services.  The first step to co-enrolling SWFI participants is understanding the unique eligibility requirements of each program. The SWFI TANF Eligibility Tip Sheet outlines federal and state eligibility requirements for TANF and the recently published Tip Sheet on Co-Enrolling Participants in SWFI and WIOA presents a side-by-side comparison of SWFI and WIOA Title I (Adult and Dislocated Worker) eligibility requirements.

Co-enrolling participants may improve SWFI participation by:

  • Expanding the supportive services available to someone during their training. A hypothetical SWFI participant may access training and child care through SWFI; bus passes, fuel cards, and interview attire through WIOA; and cash assistance through TANF. Some or all of these services may be essential for a particular SWFI participant to complete their training.

  • Expanding the training options for SWFI participants. Through WIOA, Total Action for Poverty (TAP) can access on-the-job training and work-based learning opportunities, as well as funding for community college coursework. At the Memphis Bioworks Foundation, SWFI participants can access additional training providers through WIOA if the training provider that the student is interested indoes not already have a grant agreement with the SWFI program.

  • Splitting training costs to serve more participants. Some grantees have training funds available under WIOA and SWFI, so splitting training costs enables both programs to serve more people than they would individually.

  • Tapping into existing infrastructure or agreements to better serve participants. Co-enrolling may allow the grantee to leverage agreements that other programs already have in place. SWFI participants co-enrolled in WIOA Title I services at City of Phoenix gain automatic access to the Arizona Department of Economic Security (DES) childcare providers and existing rate structuring under WIOA.

  • Funding supportive services after exhausting SWFI allowances. Some participants may need more supportive services if they are enrolled in a longer term training. If a SWFI participant reaches the maximum amount available for supportive services through SWFI before completing their training program, SWFI staff at the Memphis Bioworks Foundation will coordinate with their Workforce Investment Network to provide subsequent last dollar supportive services through WIOA.

  • Aiding sustainability. In the final year of the SWFI grant, co-enrollment can be a useful tool in sustaining supportive services for participants after the SWFI grants end.

 

            Challenges to co-enrollment. Successful co-enrollment strategies require buy-in from staff at multiple levels to commit to learning eligibility requirements across programs, and considering the full set of services an individual may qualify for at intake. The grantees who already co-enroll SWFI participants in WIOA Title I services identified several challenges to co-enrollment, including additional burden for frontline staff, additional burden for the participant, and determining a division of labor across programs. Where possible, streamlined case management through shared data systems or co-location of case managers eases some of the most significant barriers to instituting co-enrollment practices.

 

Please note that co-enrolling participants across two or more H-1B funded grants is not allowable.  See the June 2018 SWFI FAQs for more information. 

Any questions regarding allowable use of grant funds or changes to your project’s strategies should be directed to your Federal Project Officer (FPO).

Further reading:

  • Revisit the SWFI TANF Eligibility Tip Sheet that outlines eligibility requirements for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), a federal resource that several H-1B Strengthening Working Families Initiative (SWFI) grantees are leveraging to serve grantees.

  • Use the SWFI FAQs from June 2018 to review SWFI eligibility requirements and key terms related to eligible participants.

  • The resources on the Hallmarks of Program Integration: Resource Leveraging and Co-enrollment Strategies page may help grantees map assets and identify resources and partner services to integrate into their service delivery model.

  • The Integrated Service Delivery Toolkit, designed for public workforce system leaders and practitioners, will provide grantees with a systematic approach for integrating service delivery to improve the experience of job seekers and business customers.

  • Watch the WIOA Co-Enrollment Cohort Lessons Learned Webinar to hear from panelists from seven states as they share their experiences and lessons learned from participating in a cohort exploring the operationalization of co-enrollment among WIOA and partner programs. The cohort featured strategy building around interagency partnerships, state policy, funding, data collection and reporting, and service delivery.