Our partner community organizations in Takoma Park and Long Branch are holding several events in the coming weeks. We hope you can attend one or all of them!
The Healthcare Initiative Foundation (HIF) has awarded a $45,000 planning grant to Community Health and Empowerment through Education and Research (CHEER). HIF’s mission is to support organizations that offer solutions to improve the quality and delivery of healthcare for residents of Montgomery County.
CHEER is the convener of Healthy Long Branch, a consortia of health care providers, social service providers and community groups in Takoma Park and Long Branch. Healthy Long Branch brings partners from multiple sectors, such as business, nonprofit, health care, housing and community groups, together to help everyone in the community achieve excellent health.
The grant will go toward developing the Healthy Food Access Prescription program for residents in the Takoma Park and Long Branch communities with chronic health conditions that can be improved upon through good nutrition.
The World Health organization defines health promotion as the process of enabling people to increase control over, and to improve, their health. The definition moves beyond a focus on individual behavior towards a wide range of social and environmental interventions. At CHEER the Community Outreach Specialists are committed to developing the health awareness of individuals, groups, and organizations, and empowering them to make healthy choices while leading, supporting, or cooperating in multi-agency projects to promote a healthy context or social environment.
Since the fall of 2015, in collaboration with other community organizations, CHEER helped more than 300 individuals in need of referral to primary care providers, health insurance coverage for them or their family members, and general health information. CHEER Outreach Specialists were able to make appointments for everyone, help them register for health insurance, or provide the health information they needed “when they needed”.
Now, with the support of Susan Komen Foundation, we are getting ready to help women to better understand breast cancer. Understanding that education and early detection is the best way to treat breast cancer, we will be promoting early screening and helping them to schedule appointments for mammograms at MobileMed Clinic.
In the coming months the CHEER’s outreach specialists (Karla Castro, Dolores Badillo, Maribel Juarez, Sonia Reyes, Fitsum Teshome, and Betelhem Abebe) will participate in rigorous trainings conducted by Washington Adventist Hospital on breast screening and blood pressure to continue helping community members increase control over and improve their health.
What other ways would you like to see CHEER helping the health of the Long Branch community?
This last semester CHEER has been host to an intern from the University of Maryland, Chris Maddox. He has been very helpful working specifically in our health programs. We asked Chris to give some perspective on a CHEER program for which he is most excited. The following is his response.
As a new intern at CHEER I have had many interesting experiences, such as meeting people from the Primary Care Coalition and reading sensitive documents. However, my most interesting experience I have had so far is the Healthy Long Branch (HLB) meeting.
“With the backing of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement’s 100 million healthier lives campaign, Healthy Long Branch (HLB) plans to address systemic problems that affect the health and well-being of everyone in the Long Branch and Takoma Park community. HLB’s partners are anyone who works at the community-level, from the Long Brach Business League to MobileMed. Through collaboration, shared measures of progress, advocacy and coordinated activities, HLB and its partners will address improve health and well-being by focusing on four key areas:
- The Built Environment/Where we Live
- Economic Opportunity
- Community Engagement
For each of the four key areas, HLB developed workgroups that will meet regularly to coordinate activities and collaborate.
This is truly an amazing time for Long Brach, due to the uniqueness of HLB. HLB will be the first community-wide collaborative organization that will link the community to its resources and improvement our community’s health by changing the way we communicate. HLB uses a community-driven process, residents will play an integral role in the development and evaluation of HLB programs and will have many opportunities to develop both professionally, personally and as a community.
CHEER is the proud sponsor of the Takoma Park Youth Collaborative program “Who Wants to Work” Challenge.
Register your 15-19-year-old today!
In this FREE, 10-week work readiness program youth will learn valuable skills to help them gain employment. The program is on Wednesdays at 7 p.m. in the Takoma Park Community Center from April 6 – June 8. Dinner and prizes are included.
Spaces are limited, so share widely, and register now!
Download the flier here or click on the picture.