National Center of Excellence for the Elimination of Disparities (CEED) at Chicago

As one of the REACH U.S. communities, CEED@Chicago is committed to contributing to the elimination of health disparities in diabetes and cardiovascular disease (CVD) among Latinos and African Americans through community engagement, community systems change, and dissemination of best practices.

The CEED@Chicago has been working on building a coalition of multiple and diverse institutions, including academic, grass roots and community organizations. Using a community-based participatory approach and empowerment models, the CEED coalition has been working to reach a consensus on the direction CEED will take to address those disparities. Based on discussions, input, and participation of coalition participants, CEED@Chicago is focusing on policy changes in two areas, 1) health literacy and 2) equitable food distribution to impact modifiable risk factors related to Type 2 diabetes and CVD with an emphasis on smoking, nutrition, physical activity, and prevention of obesity.

Other Projects include:

Frida Kahlo Community Organization (FKCO) This organization is expanding their efforts to provide accessible and high quality bilingual diabetes prevention information to Hispanic/Latino families.  FKCO plans to enhance the capacity of local Health Promoters (Promotoras de Salud) by partnering with MLHRC which will provide extensive training and technical assistance using the Diabetes Empowerment Education Program (DEEP) curriculum.  FKCO plans to work with four schools in the Pilsen area to recruit parents and other community members to participate in the DEEP training.

Other FKCO legacy project activities under consideration are: 1) identification of key health concerns in Pilsen community schools using a brief bilingual questionnaire to gather information from parents and community residents, 2) implementation of a diabetes prevention workshop.

St. Mary and Elizabeth Medical Center (SMEMC) The SMEMC Legacy Project is a collaborative effort with the Logan Square Neighborhood Association and McAuliffe Elementary School . The project will establish a group of community-based DEEP trainers who will deliver the DEEP curriculum to parents and other community residents in order to improve diabetes knowledge, prevention and self-management. Members of SMEMC’s residency program will become DEEP trainers and participate in the community DEEP trainings to answer questions and provide explanations. Also, community residents who do not have a regular source for health care will be referred to SMEMC or other appropriate health clinics.

Latino Organization of the Southwest (LOS) The Southwest Side Walking Initiative (SWSWI), the Legacy Project of LOS is an effort to establish a new community norm for participation in physical activity. The SWSWI will create walking clubs to promote physical activity among parents of elementary school children in the Chicago neighborhoods of West Lawn, Chicago Lawn, and Gage Park . Members of the walking clubs will be provided education about risks of obesity, diabetes, CVD and other chronic diseases. The SWSWI is a coalition of the LOS four local public elementary schools: Fairfield , Hurley, Nightingale, and Tarkington.

The Grassroots Community Health Leadership Program was launched on March 27, 2009 in collaboration with the UIC Public Health Training and Practice Group. CEED will provide training and technical assistance to build and sustain capacity within community organizations to address social determinants of health related to obesity and CVD among Latinos and African Americans. Representatives from organizations in the Chicago target communities will commit to attend a sequence of eight monthly training and consultation sessions to facilitate development of neighborhood-based relevant projects. The sessions begin with an overview of the social determinants of health and will include other important topics, such as coalition building and community organization, cultural competency, policy advocacy, and media skills, technology, and education, among others.

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Filed under African-American, Community Organizing, Education for the Public, Food Desert, Healthy Food, Hispanic/Latino, Leadership Development, Networking, Nutrition, Physical Activity, Policy, Public Health, Research, Youth

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