With initial funding and assistance from St. Joseph’s-Froedtert Hospital and their Healthy Community Fund, Casa Guadalupe started the Latino Health Outreach Project (LHOP) in 2013. The main goal of this project is to help increase the knowledge of health literacy among the Spanish speaking residents of Washington County, and help improve their overall quality of life and wellbeing.
We continue to reach out to the Hispanic community, and hear what health and wellness topics are important to them and their families and what questions they have regarding our local health care system. To successfully reach out to the community, a health program committee was created, and we organized and facilitated health literacy round tables, “Health Literacy Education Outreach” hospitality and health screening sessions, made home visits, and facilitated educational mini-seminars in homes, at Hispanic businesses, and community and cultural events.
Through funds received from the Healthy Community Fund and the West Bend Community Foundation, we expanded upon our program in January 2014, and started the Latino Healthy Lifestyle Choices Project. The objective is that Spanish speaking families in Washington County will be enabled to make informed decisions about healthier lifestyle choices, targeting nutrition, physical activity, and prevention and management of chronic health management. Our goal is that Latinos will learn effective diet management and chronic illness prevention which helps to achieve Wisconsin’s high rankings of healthiness, and helps to reduce Emergency Department visits and hospitalization.
In 2015, our program name evolved to “Healthy Latinos, Healthy Futures”, and in early 2016, we received a generous grant from Froedtert and the Medical College of Wisconsin, allowing us to hire Laura Salcido as our bilingual Community Health Navigator. Laura builds trusting relationships in the local Hispanic community and serves as a liaison between health and social services and the community, to facilitate access to services and improve the quality and cultural competence of service delivery. She also builds individual and community capacity by increasing health knowledge and self-sufficiency trough a range of activities such outreach, community education, informal counseling, social support and advocacy. We have been able to provide different health programs that are making a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of our community, including the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program and the Healthy Living with Diabetes Program. Participants in these programs are making successful healthy lifestyle choices that can be clearly seen and felt within their families.
Casa Guadalupe is working with many local health care agencies and community partners to make these projects a success, including Froedtert-St. Joseph’s Hospital, Albrecht Free Clinic, American Heart Association, Aurora Healthcare, Midland Health, Washington County Health Department, Well Washington County Coalition, UW-Extension, Kettle Moraine YMCA, Healthline First Aid, Susan G. Komen, Hartford Recreation Department, GrapeVine-Wisconsin Women's Health Foundation, the Wisconsin Institute for Healthy Aging and local Zumba instructors.