240920 Building community capacity in a Hispanic migrant worker community in South Florida

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Jesus Sanchez, PhD , Department of Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, Florida International University, Miami, FL
Research to improve the health of a community benefits from the involvement of community members. Community- based participatory research (CBPR) is a collaborative partnership approach to research that equitably involves community members and researchers in all aspects of the research process. However, creating such partnerships is difficult. In this presentation, the author considers some of the barriers to community participation in research and describes a training program for overcoming such barriers and making CBPR an integral part of an academic institution's research agenda. As a project aimed at reducing HIV infection in a community of Hispanic migrant workers in South Florida, Project Salud faced some important barriers as we attempted to fully implement the principles of community-based participatory research. An early assessment of this Hispanic farm worker community revealed the need to build community capacity if a true partnership between Project Salud and the community was to be established to support HIV/AIDS research in this underserved population. To achieve the goal of building community capacity, Project Salud launched a CBPR-based research education program with the goal of building the knowledge and skills needed at the community level to develop and sustain an effective CBPR partnership. In addition, Project Salud has created a permanent research environment through the development of a research facility at the offices of one of the farm workers association in South Florida.

Training and supporting community members in the philosophy and methods of CBPR is one of the cornerstones of improved community-based research.

Learning Areas:
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Identify barriers to a true CBPR partnership. Describe the development and implementation of a training program to address such barriers. Discuss the results of such training program.

Keywords: Community Capacity, HIV/AIDS

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the researcher conducting this study. For the past decade I have been involved in several federally funded research projects that have examined HIV related risk behaviors in South Florida and implemented HIV prevention strategies. As of 2006, I have been conducting community-based participatory research in Hispanic communities in South Florida affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic.
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.