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Building capacity: A statewide conference to strengthen community health partnerships

Diana N. Derige, MPH, Elissa J. Bassler, and Regina M. Whitmore, MPH. Illinois Public Health Futures Institute, 100 W. Randolph 6-600, Chicago, IL 60601, (312) 814- 8854, dderige@idph.state.il.us

The Illinois Public Health Futures Institute (IPHFI), a statewide partnership of public and private health-related organizations, works to promote prevention and improve public health systems that maximize health and quality of life for the people of Illinois. One way IPHFI achieves this mission is to foster community capacity through training and technical assistance by sponsoring an annual partnership conference with the goal of strengthening and diversifying community health partnerships across Illinois.

The annual conference provides a unique opportunity to bring together diverse community partnerships working in traditional and non-traditional public health arenas across the state to improve their capacity and skills to address health needs of communities and understand a systems approach to improve community health.

Planned by a collaboration of community partnership leaders, conference themes in the past have included Partners in Action: Strategies for Improving Community Health, Partners in Action: Addressing the Social, Behavioral, Economic, and Environmental Determinants of Health, and Systems in Action: Partnerships Improving Community Health. The conference provides an opportunity for participants to attend a pre-conference session focused on skill building (topics include social marketing, performance management, and data). The main conference consists of keynote speakers offering national and state perspectives, concurrent sessions offering topics for all skill levels, and roundtable discussions where community partnerships can showcase their initiatives.

The conferences have been successful overall. Participants comment on the applicability of skills developed and information presented, as well as the ability to share information and build their network of colleagues from around the state.

Learning Objectives:

  • At the conclusion of the session, the participant (learner) in this session will be able to

    Keywords: Community Capacity, Partnerships

    Related Web page: app.idph.state.il.us/phfi/

    Presenting author's disclosure statement:
    I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

    Mobilizing Communities in Research and Intervention

    The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA