Community-Campus Partnership Provides $18,000 Grant for Prostate Cancer Ambassadors of Caswell County Project

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Will Lambe is the Director of the Community & Economic Development Program and the Community-Campus Partnership.

The Community-Campus Partnership (CCP) has awarded a $18,000 grant to the Carolina Community Network to Reduce Health Disparities in support of the Prostate Cancer Ambassadors of Caswell County project. The project, an initiative of UNC Program on Ethnicity, Culture and Health Outcomes (ECHO) and headed by Dr. Anissa Vines, aims to address the significant prostate cancer burden in Caswell County, especially among African American males, though a combination of community outreach and scholarly research.CCP offers small grants ranging from $500 to $20,000 to full-time faculty, staff, or students of UNC-Chapel Hill to support projects that align with local priorities in Caswell and/or Lenoir counties.  Projects must build local capacity, skills, or knowledge to address current and future challenges in the areas of community and economic development, education, infrastructure, or public health; and/or improve the livability and viability of local communities.

The Prostate Cancer Ambassadors of Caswell County will recruit 25 volunteers from the Cedar Creek Baptist Church Alliance, an association of 55 local African-American churches, to perform the community health assessments throughout the county. Ambassadors will receive training from the North Carolina Institute for Minority Economic Development, which has an existing prostate cancer training program, On the Ground Prostate Cancer Ambassadors Program,  that works to build local capacity for research and increase knowledge of cancer. The findings of the health assessment will be used by the project’s steering committee to identify and develop research questions that may be acted upon by researchers in the CCN.  The Caswell County Health Department and Nia’s Ark, an organization that provides educational opportunities which empower faith-based and community groups to promote healthy lifestyles among their constituents, will also play an integral role in the program.

Project Manager Dr Anissa Vines says, “For several years, the Ethnicity, Culture, and Health Outcomes program has been aware of the health needs in Caswell County through its Community Outreach Specialist, Brandolyn White, and a community partner involved in the Carolina Community Network to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities. Funding from the CCP small grants program will enable us to begin documenting health needs in the African American community; to  build local capacity for research; and to determine how best to address  the cancer burden in Caswell County through research.”

Will Lambe authored the NC Rural Center report, Small Towns, Big Ideas, and he served as Director of the Community and Economic Development Program at the School of Government from 2009 to 2014.

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