Date of Graduation

Summer 8-27-2014

Document Type

Project

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)

College/School

School of Nursing and Health Professions

First Advisor

Dr. Courtney Keeler

Second Advisor

Dr. Kia James

Abstract

In the United States obesity has become a major public health issue. Over the past two decades, the prevalence of obesity has doubled in adults and children. In the city of Richmond, California, adults and children are experiencing the highest rates of obesity and obesity-related diseases in comparison to other residents of West Contra Costa County. In an effort to reduce the rates of obesity in Richmond, two non-profit organizations have partnered up to provide innovative community-based health education to combat obesity and type II diabetes.

This paper will explore and summarize the 300-hour fieldwork the author experienced and completed with Brighter Beginnings and their partnering agency Lift/Levantate. Brighter Beginnings is a non-profit organization that provides free and low-cost healthcare services to residents of Contra Costa County. Lift/Levantate is a non-profit organization that provides wellness education to the community in an effort to help manage chronic diseases such as obesity and type II diabetes. The collaboration of these two agencies demonstrates how comprehensive health education in a community-based setting can have a profound impact on the behavior of the population. The fieldwork with these organizations focused on curriculum development, health education workshops, and health promotion to manage and reduce the risks associated with obesity and diabetes. In addition to the author describing the public health significance and fieldwork experience, this paper will address the core competencies of the University of San Francisco’s Master’s of Public Health Program.