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[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Columbus Congregations for Healthy Youth: A collaborative project for research and action

Kenneth J. Steinman, PhD, MPH1, Elizabeth Cooksey, PhD2, Linda James Myers, PhD3, Townsand Price-Spratlen, PhD2, and Ron Ryles4. (1) School of Public Health, Division of Health Behavior and Health Promotion, Ohio State University, B-215 Starling-Loving Hall, 320 West 10th Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210-1240, 614/293-3908, steinman.13@osu.edu, (2) Deparment of Sociology, The Ohio State University, Bricker Hall, 190 North Oval Mall, Columbus, OH 43210, (3) Department of African-American & African Studies, The Ohio State University, 386 University Hall, 230 North Oval, Columbus, OH 43210, (4) Office of Minority Health, Columbus Health Department, 240 Parsons Avenue, Columbus, OH 43215

Despite their rich history of health outreach and ministry, faith-based organizations often neglect academic research as a tool for developing health promotion efforts. For their part, public health researchers often avoid studies of religion and risky behavior (e.g., sexuality) because of the intensely personal and political nature of the topic. In 2003, several congregations in Columbus, Ohio along with The Ohio State University and local agencies organized to form Columbus Congregations for Healthy Youth (CoCHY). Funded through the Association of Schools of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CoCHY has two aims: (1) To conduct rigorous research into how teenagers' religiosity may protect them from risky sexual behavior; and (2) To build the capacity of religious congregations to understand these findings and use them to develop their own efforts to protect and improve their children's well-being. This paper describes the development of an organizational structure that enables congregations, agencies and the University to fulfill both of the projectís aims and provides a novel model of collaboration among these different types of institutions. Through such collaboration, CoCHY aims to improve the validity and applicability of research findings. Rather than direct congregations towards a specific program or set of principles, the project aims to support congregations in their own indigenous efforts to address teenage pregnancy and other risk behaviors. In this way, we expect that such efforts ultimately will be most effective and sustainable.

Learning Objectives: By the end of this session, participants will be able to

Keywords: Religion, Community Research

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.

[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

Faith and Health Collaborations That Work

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