Culturally Relevant Health Education: A Foundation for Building Cultural Competence of Health Professionals
Background: Professionals educating ethnic minority populations should employ a cultural focus during development, training, refinement and implementation stages of an intervention. Purpose: This manuscript posits that the skill of developing a culturally relevant curriculum supports the increase of cultural competence proficiency of professionals, while promoting health equity. Methods: A community-based participatory research-trained staff, recruited 378 families with 2 to 8-year-old children. Eight intergenerational focus groups were conducted at neighborhood facilities. Graduate fellows conducted reviews of literature and health directives to conceptualize the curriculum. Spanish-speaking students and promotoras (community health workers) having participants’ confidence, presented healthy lifestyle information and taught practical skills to each group of 12-16 low-income Latino families from Long Beach, CA. With attention to participants’ preferred language, educational level, cultural beliefs, practices and food preferences, the intervention demonstrates a culturally relevant curriculum. Hands-on activities and motivational interviewing questions enriched the 4-hour intervention delivered in Spanish. Results: Graduate fellows’ cultural competence increased. More than 97% of participants reported sessions beneficial to their families’ health with 84% attending all sessions/assessments. Participants found the content easy to understand and helpful to eat healthier and be more active. Conclusion: Sanos y Fuertes is a model for developing a culturally relevant, family-based healthy lifestyle educational curriculum and building culturally competent health professionals.
Copyright (c) 2021 Gail C. Frank, Erika Centinaje, Natalia Gatdula, Melawhy Garcia, Selena T. Nguyen-Rodriguez, Mara Bird, R. Britt Rios-Ellis
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.