On August 29, 2016, the Community Engagement Core of the Center for Healthy Communities (CHC) hosted a retreat for Community Health Advocates (CHA) at 5 Rivers Delta Resource Center in Spanish Fort, AL. Titled Crossing Bridges We Have Built, the retreat focused on the longevity and sustainability of the CHA program which has been active for 10 years or more.
Speakers for the day addressed the sustainability of the CHA program as well as provided resources for participants. Sessions included:
- An icebreaker session conducted by Dr. Roma Hanks which got the ball rolling with introductions and a great networking opportunity among the close to 15 CHAs participating in the event.
- Shannon Shelley-Tremblay, project manager for CHC, provided an overview of university resources available to the CHAs as well as tips for navigating through the CHC webpage.
- Sarah Wraight, a graduate research assistant in Sociology, presented the poster highlighting some of the reasons why the CA program has experienced longevity.
- Theresa McPhereson, an active CHA, led the group in relaxation techniques and encouraged them to find time for self-care.
- David Stout, from the non-profit Alabama Arise, spoke to the group on advocacy and changes in Medicaid affecting the state.
- STARS and STRIPES participants Ja’Dasia Johnson and Mitchell Greene capped the day by showcasing their PowerPoint presentations on heart disease and diabetes.