Become a VISTA

Good morning APHA Caucus on Homelessness!

We are now recruiting for 21 AmeriCorps VISTA positions starting in late August all around Oregon. Please forward this announcement widely to reach professionals interested in public health, fighting poverty and career development through a year of national service. The following informaton is how to get involved.

Join Oregon’s VISTA team to build healthy communities and your career.

Recruiting now for 21 positions starting in Fall 2017 throughout Oregon




Positions are now open for the Fall 2017 team in the Oregon Health Authority/VISTA Partnership Project.  Please forward this announcement widely to reach new professionals interested in public health, fighting poverty and career development through a year of national service.





Candidates are interviewed and hired as applications are received – so apply as soon as possible. Positions must be filled no later than July 3.



During a challenging year of national service as AmeriCorps VISTA service members, our team members lead public health initiatives in their agencies and communities. A Year With AmeriCorps- Is It Right For You?


Our team serves in the areas of healthcare reform, community wellness programs, chronic disease prevention, public health department accreditation, quality improvement processes, health equity, oral health, women’s and children’s health, obesity reduction, environmental justice, and disaster healthcare volunteer management.  We are a statewide sponsoring organization for approximately 26 VISTA positions.



·         A $5,815 Segal AmeriCorps Education Award or $1,500 post-service stipend

·         $11,880 living allowance for the year

·         Health benefits

·         Financial support for relocation before and after your year of service

·         Student loan forbearance or deferment while in service for qualified federal loans

·         One year of noncompetitive status for a federal government job



·         Team building with your cohort of more than 25 members around Oregon

·         Kick off retreat orienting you to Oregon and public health

·         Team meetings throughout the year for conferences, customized training and professional development

·         Sponsored travel to conferences and trainings you choose

·         Technical and networking assistance via our state public health program staff

·         Constant support from our team at the state Public Health Division

·         Support for your job hunting, career exploration, resume-building, networking for your next career moves



Positions are available throughout the state, both in urban centers and scenic rural areas. Oregon’s unique healthcare reform makes it a wonderful place to build your career in public health.


·         Clackamas Volunteers in Medicine Program Development:Expand the volunteer management, development, and cross-cultural services of a free clinic near Portland. Includes Latino community outreach, grant writing, volunteer program development.

·         Columbia County Public Health, Health Promotion and Accreditation: Increase physical activity opportunities, access to nutritious foods, and reduce the use/exposure of tobacco and ensure quality, accredited Public Health Services along the scenic Columbia River.

·         Coos County Public Health Accreditation and Health Promotion: Coordinate performance improvement efforts and workforce development in beautiful coastal Coos County.

·         Coos County Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Community Resilience: Lead community preparedness efforts in beautiful coastal Coos County.

·         Crook County Health Department Built Environment Planning: Help Crook County eat better and engage in active transport – and experience the high desert beauty in central Oregon.

·         Curry County Healthy Communities: Lead agency certification in this position in Gold Beach, along Oregon’s beautiful southern coast.

·         Deschutes County Public Health Young Adult Hub Planning: Lend your creativity and energy to build an innovative Young Adult Hub in beautiful Bend, Oregon

·         Jefferson County Public Health, Health Equity: Support agency accreditation, regionalization of services, and coordinating partnerships in the beautiful central Oregon town of Madras.

·         Klamath County Public Health Accreditation and Oral Health Coalition building: Coordinate efforts to accredit the entire health department and build partnership to confront oral health disparities, from the beautiful home of Crater Lake National Park.

·         Lincoln County Public Health, Health Equity and Quality Improvement: Coordinate a portfolio of equity-related projects on housing, quality improvement, grant-writing and community health improvement planning along Oregon’s beautiful north coast.

·         Linn County Public Health Vulnerable Populations Plans: Lead vulnerable populations planning for services and food security after disasters in the beautiful Willamette Valley, based in Albany.

·         Marion County Emergency Management Vulnerable Populations Plans: Lead vulnerable populations planning for services and food security after disasters in the beautiful Willamette Valley, from the state capital of Salem.

·         Multnomah County Healthy Homes: Improve community outreach efforts to recently resettled refuges in Multnomah County, from downtown Portland.

·         Oregon Health Authority Statewide Health Equity: Support the agency wide Health Equity work group in developing, implementing and evaluating current and future strategies, based in Portland.

·         Student Nutrition and Activity Clinic for Kids (SNACK): Improve quality and expansion of services to increase preventative health services for kids in McMinnville.

·         Tillamook County Health Department Healthy Communities: Promote health equity in Oregon’s beautiful and coastal Tillamook County.

·         Umatilla County Community Health Improvement Plan: Lead community health improvement planning in Oregon’s high desert city of Pendleton.

·         Umatilla County Public Health Livable Communities & Accreditation: Help change the built environment of Umatilla County to make it a healthy livable community and support agency accreditation in the high desert city of Pendleton.

·         Washington County Women, Infants, and Children (WIC): Promote WIC’s community partnerships and help increase caseload and access to services, from Hillsboro.

·         Yamhill County Public Health, Health Equity: Help develop strategic planning for outreach to medical providers, identify barriers to access health resources, and support resource navigation for homeless clients, in beautiful McMinnville.

·         Fall Team VISTA Leader: Help lead and run the team and entire OHA VISTA program, based in our state office in Portland.  Prior term of VISTA, AmeriCorps or Peace Corps required.



This is the largest AmeriCorps VISTA program in Oregon with an established eight-year history. While placed in local ground-level agencies, our state-level program supports VISTA team members with trainings in professional development, information technology and public health.  Leveraging our proven track record and taking advantage of Oregon’s cutting edge public health work, we place VISTAs in exciting positions to better the health of people living in poverty.



May 22: Recruitment opens and candidates are interviewed and hired on a rolling basis at any time.

July 3: Recruitment closes. No interviews or candidate selection after this date.


August 14, 2017-August 17, 2018: Your year of national service on our team.




The next team starts in April 2018!  Contact us to be notified of openings.





We welcome your email, calls and questions.  Our shared inbox is a great way to reach us:


Or contact individuals directly:


Katherine Cox

VISTA Leader for Fall 2016-2017 team

Phone: 971-673-1713


Brittni Blanco

VISTA Leader for Spring 2017-2018 team

Phone: 971-673-0032


Danielle Brown

OHA VISTA Project Coordinator

Phone: 503-894-3913


Special issue: Homelessness Among Veterans, Other Adults, and Youth.

Happy Memorial Weekend!

I hope everyone is starting their summer off with a fun weekend! Here is a link to a journal that our chair member, Jack Tsia, guest edited. The special issue in Psychological Services on Homelessness: Homelessness Among Veterans, Other Adults, and Youth.

The Caucus on Homelessness’ Mentorship Program

The Caucus on Homelessness is excited to continue the Mentorship Program that thoughtfully links leading professional experts in homelessness as mentors to budding public health students interested in developing skills to advance their work and career potential.

The mentorship program only requires that pairs meet three times in the year (via phone/ skype) as an opportunity to share knowledge, expertise in successfully developing a public health career.

You must be a CoH member to participate in the Mentorship Program, so please complete the Membership Form if you have not done so already. Then click on the appropriate link below to submit an application for this program.

Please fill out our application and send any questions to
Robin Petering at

APHA Nominations are Open!

The APHA Nominations Committee informed us that APHA Nominations are open. The APHA Nominations Committee is currently seeking candidates for the following open APHA leadership positions:  President-Elect (1 opening), Executive Board (3 openings), and Speaker of the Governing Council (1 opening).

All active members of APHA are eligible to apply for the positions.  The open position descriptions and the nomination form are attached to this email.

Completed nomination forms are due by Friday, April 14 2017, to Deborah Dillard via e-mail only at

The following forms can be found in the links below






Link for ARDRAW Grant

Analyzing Relationships Between Disability, Rehabilitation and Work (ARDRAW)

Small Grant Program for Graduate-Level Research

2017-2018 Request for Applications (RFA) and Application Instructions


Program Description

The objective of the ARDRAW Small Grant Program is to foster new analysis of work, rehabilitation, and disability issues, which may develop innovative and fresh perspectives on disability by providing research stipends to a broad spectrum of graduate students. ARDRAW replaces the 5-year grant called the Disability Determination Process Small Grant Program, with a new focus on research relevant to SSA’s work incentives and employment support – specifically rehabilitation, work and the disability program.


SSA may provide guidance on issues that might be fruitful areas for research. Potential research areas of inquiry include, but are not limited to:

  • Working conditions of SSA beneficiaries
  • Work accommodations and needs of SSA beneficiaries
  • Non-competitive employment for SSA beneficiaries
  • Vocational and other types of service use by SSA beneficiaries
  • Non-SSA assistance provided to SSA beneficiaries

Applicant Eligibility

  • Applicants must be masters, doctoral, or post-doctoral-level part-time or full-time graduate students pursuing studies in accredited programs at the time of the award (Fall semester of 2017) with an academic emphasis in topics of interest to disability programs, including, but not limited to, public health, social work, economics, occupational medicine, vocational and rehabilitation counseling, public policy and administration, sociology, psychology, education, medicine, employment and law.
  • At the time of stipend award, selected graduate student researchers must be citizens or non-citizen nationals of the United States, or must have been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence. Members of minority and historically disadvantaged groups are encouraged to apply.
  • Students who are not eligible for the stipend award:
    • Individuals on temporary or student visas
    • Employees of SSA (including DDS)
    • Students receiving funds from multiple SSA sources (like the Disability Research Consortium) at the time of applying for an ARDRAW stipend
  • Students are required to list any other federal funding for their research.
  • Applicants may submit more than one proposal for consideration per year, but can receive only one stipend award per year.


Amount and Disbursement of Award

Students will receive a stipend of $10,000 for the one-year program: stipends may be subject to tax withholding. The stipend may be added to other financial support the graduate student receives from his or her university/research organization. The stipend is not provided as a condition of employment either with the federal government or PRI.


Payments will be disbursed directly to awardees in two installments: (1) after submission and approval of research paper work plan (4-6 weeks following notification of the award) and (2) upon completion of the final research product and other deliverables as specified below.


Application Procedures

  1. Read this RFA for complete details and requirements of the program.


  1. Familiarize yourself with the SSA Red Book ( and view the Suggested Research Projects below to ensure that your proposal meets the goals of this program. As a further resource, you may read some of our previously funded research projects from the DDP Small Grant Program.


  1. Attend an informational call on January 31, 2017 at 3:30 pm (ET) or February 8, 2017 at 2:00 pm (ET). These calls are designed to provide an overview of a successful application. Potential applicants and their faculty mentors are strongly encouraged to attend. Please go to the following links to register:


  1. Complete the online application at and attach the following materials by 5:00 pm (ET) on Thursday, March 2nd, 2017:
    1. An abstract and five (5) page research proposal written in APA style, excluding references, tables, and figures (12 pt. Times New Roman font, 1-inch margins, single-spaced). Please see Evaluation Criteriabelow for further guidance.
    2. Proof of Access to Data. If secondary data is being used (data not collected by the applicant), a letter from the agency or organization clearly approving access to and use of data is required.
    3. IRB Approval Plan and Timeframe. Projects must be reviewed by your academic institution’s IRB. Please address how this will be accomplished.
    4. A resume or curriculum vitae. (12 pt. Times New Roman font, 1 inch margins, single-spaced)


  1. Two (2) Letters of Recommendation must be e-mailed directly by the referrers to by 5:00 pm (ET) on Thursday, March 2nd, 2017:
    1. One (1) from the Faculty Mentor for this project clearly stating support of your proposed research as feasible and potentially impactful to the field, as well as a willingness to provide consistent supervision and guidance throughout the project. This includes participation in quarterly calls and the review of all deliverables prior to submission.
    2. One (1) from an academic or professional contact who can comment on the qualities that make you an effective researcher and your potential for success with independent research.


Evaluation Criteria

Applications will initially be screened for completeness and relevance to the research goals of the ARDRAW Small Grant Program. If judged complete and relevant, the application will be further evaluated by a panel of scholars. Your application will be evaluated based on the following criteria:


  1. Statement of Problem and Literature Review (20%)
    1. Clear statement of the problem
    2. Specific and relevant research questions designed to explore/strengthen relationships between work, rehabilitation, and disability issues. Comprehensive literature review – your review should identify strengths and weaknesses of existing research and identify areas of further exploration


  1. Understanding and Methodology (30%)
    1. Demonstration of researcher’s understanding of the current relationships between work, rehabilitation and disability
    2. Appropriateness and soundness of methodology, including research design, choice of data, methods of analysis, and other procedures
    3. Explanation of how your proposed research might develop innovative and fresh perspectives on the relationships between work, rehabilitation and disability


  1. Outcomes and Implications (25%)
    1. Anticipated outcomes
    2. Statement of policy or programmatic implications


  1. Project Feasibility (20%)
    1. Feasibility of completing project within a 1-year timeframe (reasonableness of time commitment related to data collection, analysis, and other procedures)
    2. Statement of how this fits into your academic career (e.g. part of dissertation)


  1. Strength of Letters of Recommendation (5%)
    1. Faculty Mentor: Support of your proposed research as feasible and potentially impactful to the field, as well as a willingness to provide consistent supervision and guidance throughout the project
    2. Academic or professional contact: Confidence in your abilities as an effective researcher and your potential for success with independent research


Award decisions are expected by Monday, May 1, 2017.



If selected for this grant, each award recipient is expected to:

  1. Participate in a welcome teleconference with grant recipients, faculty mentors, PRI, and SSA
  2. Submit a detailed work plan indicating objectives, activities, and timeframes
  3. Submit a letter of approval from his/her academic institution’s IRB
  4. Submit quarterly progress reports summarizing status of research activities
  5. Participate in quarterly conference calls with his/her faculty mentor and PRI
  6. Submit a draft research product by Friday, May 18, 2018
  7. Submit a 15-page final written research product by Friday, June 29, 2018



For more information visit or contact us at



Priority Topics

Research priorities and questions for ARDRAW include the following:



  • There is a wide range of impairments among individuals receiving disability payments from Social Security. Are some impairments associated with dramatically higher levels of return to work?
  • What are the most common services used by beneficiaries with psychiatric conditions compared to those with physical or cognitive impairments? How does the use of employment services differ across these groups?
  • Social Security benefits are modest (roughly $1,200 per month). What role does a person’s pre-disability financial situation play in efforts to return to work following disability onset? For example, would individuals with high pre-disability earnings/income or high household expenses (children in college) be more likely to seek a return to work in order to maintain his or her pre-disability standard of living?


SSA Work Incentive Programs

  • SSA supports services provided by vocational rehabilitation agencies and employment networks under the Ticket to Work (TTW) program. To what extent are beneficiaries getting employment services from other sources such as a private employment agency, a medical/vocational rehabilitation center, or vocational services through a State welfare agency? How did beneficiaries who used their Ticket become aware of the program? Of those that used their ticket and returned to work, to what kind of work did they return and what services were the most helpful in their return to work?


Workplace Accommodations

  • SSA beneficiaries receive both cash and in-kind assistance from a variety of sources. How much do these supports add to the well-being of SSA beneficiaries? Can we estimate the dollar value of in-kind supports? How do these other supports vary by disability type and by sociodemographic characteristics?
  • How do job accommodations differ by disability or by occupation or industry types?
  • What are the job characteristics in terms of wages, hours, and job benefits among beneficiaries working in sheltered workshops?
  • How do work goals and expectations and use of vocational services differ for those working in sheltered workshops as compared to other beneficiaries?


Other Factors Affecting Return to Work

  • Has health insurance coverage by SSA beneficiaries changed since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act?
  • How does age affect the ability to work of individuals with specified impairments, such as musculoskeletal impairments or affective disorders?
  • How does education affect the ability to work among persons with health impairments?
    • Does “when” a worker earned a degree impact employability/career change?
    • Does higher education always provide a competitive advantage for a worker, or does this advantage decrease over time?

Have there been structural changes in the economy, policy environments, or workplace cultures that make employers more or less likely to engage individuals with health impairments, different levels of education, or different types of past work experience? For example, in the U.S., over time, has the culture, sociology, or economics of the workplace become more or less accommodating of individuals with limited education or advanced

APHA 2017 Call for Abstracts and Reviewers Open, Deadline to Submit Feb. 24

The Caucus on Homelessness is now accepting abstracts for the American Public Health Association 2017 Annual Meeting & Expo, as well as submissions to review abstracts. While this year’s theme is “Creating the Healthiest Nation: Climate Changes Health,” the Caucus encourages and welcomes broader issues related to this framework and other various themes related to homelessness and homeless services. Find suggested topics and further details online, or complete a reviewer submission form to apply to review abstracts for the Caucus. The deadline to submit abstracts is February 24, and reviewer submissions must be received by January 31. Contact Program Planner Brett Poe via email or phone at (615) 226-2292 with any questions.