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Fostering Civic Engagement Webinar

Volunteers and Advocates Building Robust Communities

Abstract: Abstract: In a thriving community, residents play an active role in civic life. Through civic engagement such as volunteering, collecting data to inform policymakers, being an advocate in schools, or talking to neighbors about registering to vote, residents improve health and well-being for all. But achieving robust participation in civic life requires support and access to tools, a willingness on the part of community institutions to invite and listen to residents, and role models that inspire. This webinar will provide examples of successfully fostering civic engagement in Hispanic communities along with tools, resources, and hopefully a good dose of inspiration.

Learning Objectives: Webinar participants will be able to:

  • Identify at least one cultural proficiency strategy to engage community residents in civic engagement efforts for disease prevention and health promotion.

  • Identify at least one policy environment factor that may impact health promotion.

  • Identify at least one tool available to increase civic engagement in prevention.

Presenters: Examples of approaches to civic engagement to improve well being.


  • Genoveva IslasDirector of Cultiva la Salud in California’s San Joaquin Valley will profile policy and environmental change partnerships in eight counties to help community residents gain access to healthy food, beverages, and safe places to play and the role of community leadership development efforts.

  • Florencia Velasco FortnerPresident and CEO of The Concilio in Dallas TX, established Parents Advocating for Student Excellence (PASE) with 90.2% of children of PASE parents graduating from high school; PASE parent graduates launched advocacy campaign that saved funding for program for new parents.

  • Ken McLeod – Policy Director of League of American Bicyclists, profiling a complete streets project and role of data collection, shared vision, and advocacy to achieve equity in healthier bikeable and walkable communities.

Resources:  A series of online tools based on presentations that support civic engagement.

Changemakers Using Policy, Systems, and Environmental Change

  • The Fight for Health Equity in California’s Central Valley – Profile of the Powerful People campaign that led to Fresno, California’s Area Specific Plan on affordable housing, jobs, economic development, transportation, healthy food access, and parks and recreation with equity and culturally-based efforts at its core.

  • Arvin Residents Create a Healthier Future – Profile of rural community in Kern County, California that organized around a community vision where schools and parks offer ample opportunity for safe physical activity and where quality, healthy, and affordable food is commonplace.

  • Blueprint for Changemakers – The Blueprint outlines ways to leverage the unique power and efficacy of local policy solutions, incorporate health in all policies, and engage diverse community members in the policy process.


Fostering Civic Engagement in Families

  • Caring and Sharing – Civic engagement can be taught early. Sesame Street in Communities resources on helping children build skills that let them develop healthy relationships and respect the differences between themselves and others.

  • Parents Engaged in Schools – The Concilio’s Parents Advocating for Student Excellence (PASE) program, teaches parents how to take a participatory role in the academic success of their children through active engagement with the public school system and development of supportive home environments. For over 30,000 children in underserved Dallas neighborhoods the impact has been a 90.2% high school graduation rate and 78% continuing to higher education.


Fostering Health Equity through Bike and Walking Friendly Communities

  • 2020 Bicycle Friendly Communities – Guide and application (next application deadline February 5, 2020) to be declared a Bicycle Friendly Community and realize your community’s vision for a better, bikeable community.

  • I Bike, I Vote – Advocacy guides (national and state) on public financing and infrastructure support for biking and walking along with equity initiative reports.

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