Empowerment of Promotoras as Promotora–Researchers in the Comidas Saludables & Gente Sana en las Colonias del Sur de Tejas (Healthy Food and Healthy People in South Texas Colonias) Program

Seq ID: 463
DocID: TX24
Authors: St. John J, Johnson C, Sharkey J, Dean W, Arandia G
Year: 2013
State: TX
Website link: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23404423
Publicly Available: Yes
Evidence Generation: Evidence-based interventions
Workforce Development: CDC expand CHW work into SDOH, Training- Content/modes/delivery

Promotoras are trusted members of underserved, at-risk Hispanic communities experiencing social and health inequities. As promotora–researchers, promotoras have the unique ability and opportunity not only to provide outreach and education but also to be actively engaged in conducting research in their communities and serve as a cultural bridge between the community and researchers. In this article, we present a case study of personal and collective empowerment of six promotora–researchers who participated in seven community-based participatory research projects. Data sources included debriefing interviews with the promotora–researchers, milestone tracking and documentation completed during and after each study, and observations by the principal investigator and project managers regarding the role of the promotora–researchers in these studies. We qualitatively analyzed the data to identify the processes and decisions that were developed and implemented in a series of projects, which resulted in promotora–researcher empowerment. We found that active engagement empowered promotora–researchers personally and collectively in all phases of the research study. Common elements that contributed to the empowerment of promotora–researchers were valuing promotora–researchers’ input, enabling promotora– researchers to acquire and utilize new skills, and allowing promotora–researchers to serve as both researchers and traditional promotoras. Together, these elements enabled them to more fully participate in research projects, while allowing them to identify and address needs within their own communities.

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