Last week was the Home Care Association of Washington’s (HCAW) Annual Meeting. Every year members from 50 plus agencies from across the state come together to be reinvigorated through learning, networking, and renewing friendships. It has been CareForce’s privilege to be a member for going on 10 years. I will blog more about that next week. One of the center pieces of our annual meeting is the awards banquet. This is a banquet where awards are given to home health and home care employees from member organizations. Celebrating achievements of everyday heroes defies you to keep your kleenex in your pocketbook. Two years ago, a new award was added for the agency whose employees study and complete the most on-line courses through the HCAW On Line University. This year the E-Learning Award came to CareForce. Esther Cooper, our Director of Staffing, and Essie Jackson, NAC, our home care aide who has the most seniority as a caregiver (almost 14 years) attended to accept the prestigious award. Cooper was instrumental in helping all of our employees use the on line system which offers courses such as communicating effectively and creating and maintaining a safe and clean environment. And obviously the heroes of the day were our caregiver employees such as Jackson who did their due diligence to complete the coursework. Being a member of HCAW allows CareForce to provide this amazing resource to our caregivers at no charge. Other agencies that do not belong to HCAW often require their caregivers to pay seperately for the continuing education which is required by law to be completed each year. Even some of our most experienced caregivers have given us really positive feedback about the quality of the material in the coursework of HCAW On-Line University. There are about 50 courses on line that have been approved for WA State Credit for our caregivers. While CareForce offers in person continuing education for skill improvement, this On-Line University meets the needs of our caregivers who have difficulty coming to enough training to complete their required 12 hours per year. Please join me in celebrating our caregivers and their awesome completion of over 225 hours of continuing education on line last year.