Language can be a significant barrier in healthcare, and Northwest Community Healthcare (NCH) is tackling this issue through a free health education program that is helping hundreds of northwest suburban residents. Promotoras de Salud – Promoters of Health – is reaching out to the Latino community with important health and social service referral information in Spanish.
Promotoras de Salud is a nationally recognized model for engaging the Latino community in disease prevention, health promotion and community building. Small group presentations are conducted at a variety of neighborhood locations, where Spanish-speaking residents gain valuable healthcare knowledge from a Promotora, or ambassador, of NCH.
NCH, in cooperation with the Palatine Opportunity Center and the American Diabetes Association, launched the program in 2007, focusing on diabetes prevention and management. Since that time, the program has expanded greatly to include:
The Promotoras program trains Latina women who have been identified as potential leaders in their community to serve as a Promotora and deliver important health information in Spanish. The approach is effective, as Promotoras work from within their own communities and share the same values, culture, language, and life experiences as the individuals they teach.
The Promotoras program not only aims to educate the Latino community about these health and lifestyle topics, but also to build the leadership skills of the Promotora and encourage them to pursue careers in healthcare.
Spanish speaking residents interested in attending an upcoming Promotoras de Salud session should call 847.776.9500, ext. 0 (Palatine), or 847.506.4930 (Mount Prospect).