225533 Building a New Vision for South Atlanta: Starting with Resident Concerns

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Sheryl Strasser, PhD, MPH, MSW, CHES , Insitute of Public Health, Georgia State University, Atlanta
Lucy Annang, PhD, MPH , Department of Health Promotion, Education, and Behavior, University of South Carolina, Arnold School of Public Health, Columbia, SC
Jessica L. Muilenburg, PhD , Department of Health Promotion and Behavior, University of Georgia, Athens, GA
John Steward, MPH , Insitute of Public Health, Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA
Yomi Noibi, PhD , ECO-ACTION, Atlanta
Margaret Hooker , ECO-ACTION, Atlanta
Chandra Gallashaw , ECO-ACTION, Atlanta
The neighborhoods south of Atlanta began to decline in terms of health and vitality in the 1960s. Large interstate freeways isolate these parts of the city and divide historic neighborhoods. As a result, the area has been left with a plethora of vacant lots, dilapidated and vacant homes, and abandoned commercial buildings. Compared to the rest of Atlanta, this section has a greater proportion of African-American residents, higher rates of unemployment, crime, lower rates of homeownership and high school graduation, as well as a greater percent of households under the poverty threshold. Data also indicate an 86% decline in commerce between 1962 and 2006 and a current building vacancy rate of 42%. This paper presents how the Mobilizing Action through Planned Partnership (MAPP) framework was used to guide a sustainable environmental health collaborative that involves residents, community-based organizations, municipal and state agencies, local universities, and businesses. Based upon results of a secondary environmental data review, brownfields, air quality, and solid waste pose major public health concerns for residents. However, results from 145 resident surveys using a comparative risk analysis structure demonstrate that public safety is their greatest concern, followed by vacant properties. The results of this project are important because they reveal a disconnect between environmental data and resident perspectives, the latter of which represents a population that has been marginalized for decades. Residents' concerns were reconciled with the data review to provide directions for future projects. Project findings are important for advancing collaborative endeavors.

Learning Areas:
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
1. Review the Mobilizing Action through Planned Partnership (MAPP) model. 2. Describe how the MAPP process elicits input from traditionally underrepresented populations.

Keywords: Community Collaboration, Environmental Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am an evaluation specialist who is CHES certified
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.