Educational outreach to the public can involve addressing individual well-being, including nutrition and chronic disease management, or increasing the general public’s awareness of rural communities through rural cultural competency and poverty simulations. Education can also be a component of advocacy by educating public officials on the unique needs of rural communities.
Every department at Rural Health Network engages in some form of education. As an agency, Rural Health Network operates evidence-based programs such as CDSMP – Chronic Disease Self-Management Program to improve an individual’s ability to manage their chronic conditions. The Food and Health Network offers participants in the Fruit and Vegetable Prescription program support and education, and the option to attend additional nutrition, cooking, and gardening programs offered in collaboration with key partners of the program. Americorps Farm to School Corps members engage in educational initiatives in schools to demonstrate the importance of a diverse, nutritious diet. Getthere offers travel training through our Mobility and Transportation Advocates. These Advocates work closely with both groups and individuals in need of transportation and mobility services to familiarize them with public transit routes and other transportation options.
Education also involves conducting and publishing assessments and research on emerging community needs, programmatic evaluations, and our impact on the community. It’s important for us to be educated on the communities we serve, and to then share that knowledge with the public.