Upcoming health promotion initiative

In the coming year, we will be codesigning a project with national partners that uses community health workers (promotores) to deliver diabetes prevention education, community development and clinical compliance assistance. Recent efforts around the world have shown that this model offers greater opportunities for disseminating knowledge and ensuring treatment compliance. The CKP believes that the community development facet is central to the long term efficacy of the other two activities.

We anticipate that the pilot project will take place in Fullerton, California. More details will be posted here as soon as they become available.

Current Project

Santa Ana Building Healthy Communities (SABHC)

Working with the Santa Ana Building Healthy Communities partners, the CKP is co-designing the learning and evaluation component of the ongoing community health policy and systems change project. CentralSanta Ana is made up of 90,000 residents who face structural challenges often depicted through high rates of morbidity and mortality across a range of indicators. Central Santa Ana is also a place where there are large group of passionate youth, adult resident and organizational leaders working toward social change. This project is a unique opportunity to create a new way of community planning driven by residents. With our partners we are learning how to make the process resident driven. Through ethnographic research CKP provides on the ground feedback and support to the ongoing learning process to foster the policy and systems changes SABHC aims to see.    


To find out more information about building healthy communities, visit The California Endowment.

Like SABHC on Facebook

Past Projects

Obesity Prevention in Youth
Working with our partners, the CKP is codesigning a study to evaluate the health impact of a neighborhood soccer league. With over 300 low income, Spanish speaking participants in this neighborhood league, our partners want to know if the league improves overall fitness and lowers the height-weight ratios of participants. Additionally, we seek to discover why children do NOT participate, how to conduct better outreach for the league, and to conduct Circulos with young people to find other activities (dance, baseball, boot camp, etc) that might reach even more young people.

Institute for Clinical Translational Science (ICTS)
The CKP works within its institutional home to bring about changes in the research practices of universities and other institutions. To this end, we have been partnering/advocating to include social determinants in research into common diseases. The CKP has been instrumental in the formation of the Community Action Planning Group, as part of the Community Engagement Unit of the ICTS at UC-Irvine’s School of Medicine.

Asthma, Socioeconomic Status, and Residential History
Working with our partners in the Institute for Clinical Translational Science, the CKP is working to add socioeconomic status, residential history and other environmental exposure variables to a study of the basic science of wheezing. Adding these social variables to the biological ones, will both control for alternative causes of wheezing, but may help explain why some kids get asthma and other do not.

School Lunch and Food Access
Working with our neighborhood partners, the CKP has been working to support the formation of a Wellness Committee for a local school district. Gathering best practices, sample surveys and other information and resources for the emergent committee, we aim to improve access to healthy lunches and snacks. In an environment where the district says it cannot afford to change or that students will not change their eating, our partners, many of whom are concerned parents, have identified this as among their top priorities.

Círculos de acción
We hold informal but structured “círculos de acción,” reflexive dialogues that begin with community insider-outsiders (those who work but do not live in the community of interest) and extend in subsequent dialogues to community insiders (those who do live in the community of interest). Participants from the former are asked to invite a peer to successive dialogues, an effort stemming from the premise that repeated iterations begin to permeate deeper into the community. Using these methods, we argue that allowing community members to define themselves and their issues of interest is necessary for initiating true community-based collaboration. We began this effort with a community health assessment in Santa Ana, CA. We then adapted it for Valencia, a neighborhood of Fullerton,California, done in collaboration with the Valencia Task Force. We are currently preparing a report that evaluates Circulos as a method of asset and challenge mapping, the first stage in community design action research. The second stage and third stages are collaborative project design and action.

The project objectives are to:

  • Advocate for community-initiated and community-based participatory action.
  • Identify sources of imbalance in setting the community research agenda.
  • Promote new ways of approaching community-based research, including círculos de acción.