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In The Spotlight. Shop Our Brands. All Rights Reserved. Cancel Submit. How was your experience with this page? Needs Improvement Love it! It is important that the assessments be linked to one another. Each can use the findings of the others to inform its own, and proper coordination will avoid duplicating efforts and overloading particularly good informants. It can also help to ensure cross-referrals of information and informants among the assessments. It is also important to celebrate successes — both the completion of each assessment and the successes it reveals.
This can create and maintain enthusiasm among participants in the effort, as well as keep the community informed of the work being conducted. A community can be proactive by identifying the issues that will help it realize its vision. The MAPP process to this point has focused on developing a vision and gathering information.
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In this phase, you use the guiding vision and the information to determine which community issues are most important to helping make your vision a reality. Strategic issues are informed by analyzing and integrating the results of all four assessments. Only by considering all the available information can you be sure to find issues that go beyond immediate problems or conditions and address the overall health of the community. In order to identify the real strategic issues, you have to employ systems thinking.
If the Committee is truly representative of the community, this may be fine, but it is also possible to recruit other community members to participate in this part of the process, in order both to generate as many ideas as possible, and to make sure that you include the voices of all stakeholders. Next, list the chosen issues in a logical order. You might want to construct this list in priority order, either by urgency, or by what needs to be done first so that the next issue on the list can be successfully addressed.
The list then becomes the beginnings of your action plan. It tells you what you need to address and when you need to do it in order to bring about community change. The question, then, is: What action can you take that will allow you or your group to reach your goal? In this phase, it probably makes more sense for the committee to work alone. The MAPP website suggests that the Committee break up into small groups for all but the last two steps of this phase. You might consider using that structure, but coming together at the end of each step so that the whole committee has a chance to react to the goals and strategies chosen.
Step 5, selecting and adopting strategies, probably ought to be the work of the full committee. Then drafting the planning report might be delegated to a smaller group, again coming back to the full committee for tweaking. An overall goal, then, might be to increase that access. It includes community attitudes — both how those without access view the local public health system and how the system and the rest of the community view them.
It extends to locations of businesses Are there stores in every part of the community where healthy foods and products are available? A goal, like this one, that encompasses many elements must be broken down into objectives — steps that lead to the achievement of the whole package. These objectives might be pursued at the same time, or one after another, depending on the capacity and resources of the community. Each objective needs a strategy that will lead to its realization. There are a number of reasons why a large number of families might be unwilling or unable to gain access to health information, health care, and healthy products and practices.
Your assessments have probably given you the information to understand what at least some of them are. Here are four possibilities:. Each of these reasons constitutes a threat to access to health information, care, and practices, and each needs a different strategy to counter it. There may be an overriding strategy that spans all of these, and that may be used in carrying them out.
One that comes to mind is recruiting and training community members as peer health educators that could work with both individual families and groups to spread information about the possibilities available in the rest of the local public health system, and about nutrition, parenting, healthy lifestyle, and similar topics. Once the planning phase is completed, there should be a celebration that serves, as before, both to energize participants and create interest and support in the community.
It comprises nine steps, divided into three stages: planning, implementation, and evaluation. If we look at the goal and strategies we discussed earlier, the idea of objectives becomes clear. The overall goal was to increase access to the local public health system for families with children. One strategy was to train members of the community as peer health educators. Some objectives for this strategy might be:. There are many other objectives that might be relevant here — the number of referrals made to which elements of the local public health system, the number of hours spent by peer health educators, the number of hours of child care to be provided, the frequency with which families are to be visited, and more.
Good objectives have these qualities. You can do everything exactly as you planned it and still get little or no result, either because your plans were flawed, or because of unforeseen or unusual circumstances. You can also determine who did a terrific job, and give her more responsibility, or ask her to take on a leadership role. Depending on the goals and strategies involved, some of these plans may be carried out by one organization, others by another, and still others by a collaboration among several.
Many of these resources may be available through shared resources among organizations represented on or connected to the MAPP Committee. Others may involve applying for grants or obtaining contracts to provide services. The Committee may want to reach out to more partners — organizations or individuals that have contact with these families — in order to reach as many of them as possible. Those people may be available through the organizations and institutions represented on the Committee, or you may have to bring in more partners in order to find them.
Child care slots with providers represented on or through the Committee might also be available.
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In addition to skills and knowledge, peer health educators will need a structure within which to operate. They have to know when and how to refer people to other elements of the local public health system, whether and how to follow up, etc.
There should be policies and procedures that cover what these workers are expected to do. If they have transportation, should they drive people to appointments, for instance? The clearer the guidelines are, the better the job peer health educators are likely to do, and the more likely the effort is to meet its objectives. Your action plan should give you a step-by-step outline of what to do and when to do it for each strategy. Following that outline should bring success if your plan was realistic, and if you were right about what you needed to do. It must be either with the plan itself or with your basic assumptions about what would work.
That information gives you a basis for understanding what actually happened and for making appropriate adjustments. The MAPP website suggests that each MAPP participant — members of the Committee and others involved in the planning process — should be involved in implementing at least one strategy. To name a few:. How easy it would be to get everyone directly involved depends to a large extent on the number of strategies being implemented, the timeline, and the actual nature of the strategies. It would be helpful at this stage to include in the process any other individuals or organizations who can be helpful, either in moving the implementation phase forward, or in garnering community awareness and support.
The more sectors — and people — in the community are involved, the more likely it will be that plans will be implemented effectively.
While each strategy should be evaluated individually, there needs also to be an evaluation of both the overall implementation and the outcomes of the MAPP process as a whole. If you intend to evaluate the MAPP process, then that process must be monitored from the very beginning, and evaluation should start when the process does. Given these and other questions that should be addressed in the evaluation, the evaluation process must start at the same time as the MAPP process itself, and continue throughout.
Part of evaluation planning is deciding who should be involved. This decision often may revolve around whether the evaluation will be conducted by an objective individual or group from outside the community — possibly a firm or someone from academia, who may or may not be paid — or by a participatory group from among the Committee and other stakeholders. Since the MAPP process is meant to continue as an ongoing cycle, evaluation should be an integral part of any of its activities, because — even when the activity is extremely successful — conditions can change in the community or in an organization, and there may be need for rethinking.
Evaluation can show this, and make it possible to adjust before you find yourself failing at something you thought you were good at. The same is true for the partnerships and participation generated by the MAPP process. While it focuses on improving the local public health system, its community perspective both addresses the community as a whole, and makes it flexible enough to be used with any community system.