243427 Improving health through faith-based initiatives: Working to reduce health disparities among minority populations

Tuesday, November 1, 2011: 8:30 AM

Linda King, BA, MPA Candidate , Department of Public Health Education, North Carolina Central University, Durham, NC
Title: Improving health through faith-based initiatives: Working to reduce health disparities among minority populations

Linda B. King, Denise G. Belle, LaVerne Reid, Sue McLaurin, Seronda Robinson, Jonathan Livingston, Zulayka Santiago, N. Ruth Little

Issue. Faith-based organizations and churches play an effective role in eliminating/reducing minority health disparities because of their unique position in the community (NIH, 2010). This presentation will demonstrate activities used to implement health programs and interventions to meet the needs of minority populations involved in formative research for 5 NC Eliminating Health Disparities Initiative (HDI) diabetes focus grantees that collaborate with churches and faith-based groups. Description. Through an academic-community partnership, the HDI grantees receive technical assistance from North Carolina Central University health disparities experts who utilize a comprehensive grants monitoring process to examine the effectiveness of the interventions. The successful faith-based interventions include evidenced-based and promising practices that comprise environmental policy change; farmer's market programs; change in practices and physical environments; and provision of support from peers. The HDI initiative is funded by the NC Health and Wellness Trust Fund. Lesson Learned. Emerging promising practices to work effectively with faith-based organizations:1) implementation of environmental policies; 2) discussions with faith-based leaders to integrate the health disparities initiative into religious components; and 3) encouraging group education and supportive relationships. Recommendations. 1) building capacity among faith-based programs to compete with other entities working on health disparities; 2) identifying evidence-based and promising practices to develop effective programs through faith-based organizations; and 3) influence faith-based programs to advocate for their community's health.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Program planning

Learning Objectives:
1) Explain how faith-based programs tailored their interventions. 2) Discuss the policy efforts that were instituted to sustain program efforts. 3) Identify techniques for engaging a diverse population towards behavior change.

Keywords: Faith Community, Health Disparities

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have served as the associate director/project officer for the health disparities program for five years. I also have more than a decade of public health experience.
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.