Community Health Worker Training and Capacity Building
Training of Trainers
For the past 20 years, SEAHEC has developed and implemented training programs that empower local people to become health promoters in their own communities. Throughout southeastern Arizona, we’ve worked with organizations and clinics, training their staff to train local residents as health promoters and outreach workers in areas including: health advocacy, cancer and diabetes prevention, detection and referral and other health priorities.
Since 2011, SEAHEC has collaborated with the University of Arizona, providing support for curriculum design and workshops to create advocacy trainings for promotores de salud-community health workers.
Acción Para La Salud, or Action for Health, is a five year project out of the Arizona Prevention Research Center at the University of Arizona Mel & Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health. The Acción Para La Salud core research project aims to determine the effectiveness of integrating community advocacy into community health worker (CHW) outreach and education activities in increasing community-driven policy change related to chronic disease prevention. The curriculum is available online. For more information, contact Maia Ingram
In 2014, the US Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) awarded SEAHEC our second Network Planning Grant in two years.
The aim of the newly launched Arizona Community Health Workers Network was to build a coalition to create a state-wide network to support Arizona’s Community Health Worker (CHW) workforce. Despite Arizona’s long history of community health worker “CHW” advocacy and research, the CHW occupation remains a poorly understood and underutilized resource in Arizona’s healthcare industry. By uniting rural and regional CHW interest groups across ethnic, racial and geographic sectors in Arizona, the Network is increasing access to care by enhancing the capacity and integration of the CHW workforce in primary care and health promotion.
Our broad based network represents community health workers, their employers and diverse members of the health care community. Through developing a community health worker workforce that is both sustainable and integrated into health care teams, we address our most pressing issues of access to health care for the most disadvantaged residents of Arizona.
Our Network achieved four objectives during the Network Planning phase:
1. To establish operating procedures for membership, leadership and decision-making;
2. To produce a Strategic Plan to guide our work over the next 5 years;
3. To develop a Sustainability & Business Plan for Network programs and services; and
4. To assess CHW workforce capacity both to expand access to health services and to integrate CHWs into the primary health service delivery system within our State.
The benefits of the Network are being felt state-wide, as the work of our diverse agencies with broad scope and reach help transform the way in which health services are offered.
Since 2008, SEAHEC has been working in collaboration with Chiricahua Community Health Center and the Arizona-Mexico Commission to promote farmworker health in Cochise County by addressing both access to health services and workplace health, safety, and sanitation conditions. Healthy Farms Campos Saludables works with both farmers and farmworkers to provide health education and preventive services, and linking them to clinical care and technical assistance for workplace safety and sanitation. The Arizona-Mexico Commission’s Health Committee offers an annual Healthy Farms Recognition to farms meeting high standards in health, safety, and sanitation, which can be used to attract consumers concerned about farmworker health.
Read about Healthy Farms/Campos Saludables in the Arizona Farm Bureau’s newsletter, “Fill Your Plate,” from September 2011.
In January 2012, SEAHEC and partners launched the Arizona Healthy Hearts Initiative, a first step in building a broad based community health worker collaboration network. The network links Arizona’s American Indian Community Health Representatives and Latino Promotores de Salud, connecting them to the AzCHOW Network, and providing them with resources for collaboration. This network will provide a foundation for future community health worker work force capacity building efforts. More
Since 2007, SEAHEC has received support from the Alzheimer’s Association Desert Southwest Chapter to operate the Nogales Caregivers Resource Zone, a resource center located at SEAHEC that provides provide information and support to anyone with concerns related to Alzheimer’s Disease. The Caregivers Resource Zone offers medical background, self-help strategies, support for family and friends, and information for health care providers. The two organizations also offer an annual Santa Cruz Caregiver Education Conference for families and support providers.
SEAHEC, in collaboration with the Arizona Rural Women’s Health Network (RWHN,) is proud to be bringing Project Connect to health providers across rural Arizona. SEAHEC and the RWHN are supporting state-wide Train-the-Trainer workshops for healthcare professionals, hospital staff, and community leaders on models for incorporating screening tools and referrals into patient visits. Health care providers learn to recognize the signs of domestic violence, sexual violence, and reproduction coercion, and how to respond. SEAHEC provides Continuing Education credits for all participants in Arizona. Soon online video modules for the training will be available. Project Connect is funded through the Arizona Coalition against Domestic Violence.
Additionally, since 1998 SEAHEC has been an active partner in a broad-based DV task force in Santa Cruz County that has been widely recognized as a model community coalition. Through its truly collaborative approach, the Task Force addresses DV issues holistically, meeting community needs in areas including: the creation of a shelter, education and awareness on teen dating violence, and integrated referral for support services.