Latina Health Project Offers Outreach, Educational, Clinical and Counseling Activities
Three grants from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) (19961999) partially funded the health outreach, educational, clinical, and counseling activities of the Latina Health Project of the Planned Parenthood Association of Mercer Area (PPAMA), in Mercer County, N.J.
Called Cuidandote (Take Care of Yourself), the program is the only effort in Mercer County specifically devoted to overcoming the linguistic and cultural barriers that place Latinas at high risk for reproductive health problems such as HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted disease, and cervical and breast cancer.
The program is staffed by two full-time Latina staff and is carried out primarily at two sites: Trenton, where more than 60 percent of Mercer County's Latinas live, and Hightstown.
- Approximately 1,000 Latinas are served yearly, often through multiple visits. Half of all visits are for PPAMA health services.
- Cuidandote has four components:
- Community outreach: This component includes presentations by PPAMA'sLatina staff at local churches, schools, and community centers or fairs; public service advertisements in buses and on billboards; and an annual free, daylong conference on Latina health issues. PPAMA's partners in its outreach efforts include the Mercer County Hispanic Association, Latinas Unidas, and the YWCA. (See the Bibliography for details.)
- Education: Cuidandote conducts a series of six-week programs in homes, in community centers, and at its Trenton and Hightstown clinics. The programs focus on sex education, HIV/AIDS awareness, communication, self-esteem, negotiating and decision-making skills, nutrition, and parenting techniques.
- Clinical services: All of Planned Parenthood's services are provided for Latinas, with a bilingual/bicultural staff member available to interpret and advocate. Services include reproductive health care, family planning, maternity and newborn care, nutritional counseling, social services, and screening for HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases, cervical and breast cancer, hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, and other conditions.
- Personal counseling: Latina clients meet one-on-one with a Latina social worker to discuss a range of concerns, including HIV/AIDS, drug abuse, domestic violence, sexual assault, and interpersonal relationships.
RWJF provided three grants to Planned Parenthood Association of Mercer Area, Inc. totaling $104,590.
Additional funding during the grant period came from the New Jersey Department of Health ($75,000), the Curtis W. McGraw Foundation ($25,000), the Mary Owen Borden Foundation ($17,500), the Planned Parenthood Federation of America Prenatal Care Network ($17,500), the Princeton Area Community Foundation ($8,500 estimated), and the United Way of Greater Mercer County ($7,579). RWJF has awarded a renewal grant (ID# 036127), providing support for the Latina Health Project through September 2001.
GRANT DETAILS & CONTACT INFORMATION
Service and Education Program for Latina Women
Planned Parenthood Association of Mercer Area, Inc. (Trenton, NJ)
- Program to Improve Social and Medical Services for Hispanic Women
Amount: $ 30,000
Dates: March 1996 to February 1997
- Service and Education Program for Latina Women
Amount: $ 35,590
Dates: March 1997 to February 1998
Dates: November 1998 to October 1999
(Current as of date of this report; as provided by grantee organization; not verified by RWJF; items not available from RWJF.)
"Protegiendonos! The Fifth Annual Conference for Latinos," September 14, 1996, Trenton, N.J. Attended by 35 to 55 Latino residents of the Trenton, N.J., area. One keynote presentation and four presentations.
- Sasa Montano, director of Lutheran Social Ministries.
- Alma Garcia, counselor, Womanspace, "Domestic Violence."
- Francisco Guzman, case manager, Faith Services Red Cross, "HIV Basics."
- Angela Velez, Mary Kay representative, "For Women: Health & Beauty."
- Juan Encarnacion, health educator, Planned Parenthood Association of the Mercer Area, "For Men: Safer Sex Party."
"Cuidandonos en Familia! La Sexta Conferencia Annual para la Comunidad Latina," October 18, 1997, Trenton, N.J. Attended by 35 to 55 Latino residents of the Trenton, N.J., area. One presentation and three workshops/sessions.
- Erica Franco, Eduviguez Alcazar, and Hortensia Santiago, "Palabras de Bienvenida."
- Julio Guzman, Mercer County Hispanic Association, "Actividades para Ninos."
- Marcela Clavijo, "YOGA."
- Yanira Zavala, attorney, "Imigracion."
Presentations and Testimony
PPAMA has given invited presentations during the period of approximately 1996 to the present at the following local organizations:
- "ASPIRA" at Trenton High School
- Trenton Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA)
- Women, Infants, and Children Program (WIC)
- Mercer County Hispanic Association
- Trenton Urban Women's Center
- Community Action Service Center, Hightstown, N.J.
- Better Beginnings Child Care Center, Hightstown, N.J.
- New Horizon Treatment Services, Trenton, N.J.
- Lutheran Social Ministries of New Jersey
- Clay Learning Street Center, Trenton, N.J.
- Boys & Girls Club, Trenton, N.J.
- Latinas Unidas
- Puerto Rican Day Care
PPAMA has also given invited talks or operated a booth to distribute information on PPAMA, at a number of annual community events and health fairs during the same period, including:
- Trenton Community Day
- Trenton Downtown Association Fair
- Trenton Heritage Days
- Latin American Task Force Health Fair, Princeton, N.J.
- College of New Jersey
- Rider University
- Mercer County Community College
- Princeton Good Community Fair
- Trenton High School
"Self-Reliance Advised for Latinas," in The New York Times, September 15, 1996.
"Planned Parenthood Hosts Latina Conference," in The Times (Trenton, N.J.), October 1998.
Report prepared by: James Wood
Reviewed by: Robert Crum
Reviewed by: Robert Narus
Program Officer: Terrance Keenan