Performance Improvement 2005. Develop, Test and Implement a Tool to Identify and Strengthen Community Assets and Resiliency Factors to Eliminate Health Disparities

01/01/2005

The purpose of this project was to develop a community asset evaluation tool in order to assist communities with advancing resiliency factors based on the goals of Healthy People 2010 - one of which is eliminating health disparities. The objectives were to: (1) Delineate a set of community assets/resiliency factors related to Healthy People 2010 goals. (2) Develop and pilot test a community asset evaluation tool that incorporated identified factors; and (3) delineate preliminary guidelines on how to strengthen community assets to eliminate health disparities. Using a five-part methodology (i.e., an environmental scan, a national expert panel to advise the project, development of a draft assessment tool/toolkit, pilot-testing in three communities, and development of a set of preliminary guidelines), a Toolkit for Health & Resilience In Vulnerable Environments (THRIVE) was developed. This toolkit, with its emphasis on resilience and community strengths, offers community leaders an alternative and constructive way of viewing the environmental factors that influence health and well-being, as they undergo their strategic planning and needs assessment efforts to improve health outcomes and close health gaps for members of their communities. Recommendations and next steps included: (1) Distributing the tool widely through outreach and dissemination, especially to government agencies, community-based organizations, and others serving communities of color and low-income communities, and actively working to address health disparities. (2) Developing appropriate education and training materials to complement the tool and mediums for dissemination, including further refinement of the preliminary guidelines. (3) Bringing THRIVE “to scale”, i.e., advancing the THRIVE approach in communities throughout the country, and providing the appropriate training and technical assistance needed to do so. (4) Tracking and evaluating the use of THRIVE to determine how it is being used, by whom, and to what effect, including identifying case studies, success stories, and promising practices; and 5) developing generic models of the tool more appropriate for urban vs rural settings.

PIC ID: 7861; Agency Sponsor: OPHS-OMH, Office of Minority Health; Federal Contact: Simpson, James, 301-443-9923; Performer: The Prevention Institute, Oakland, CA

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