Improvements in environmental health literacy along the Texas-Mexico border following community-wide health education

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The positive outcomes derived from the implementation of culturally sensitive educational programs in addressing disparities in environmental literacy and health among disadvantaged communities have not been rigorously examined. This report summarizes the results of a community-wide survey completed to test this hypothesis in the Cameron Park Colonia, one of the poorest communities along the Texas-Mexico border. The assessment followed a two-year training program in environmental health provided by community lay health workers using a train-the-trainer approach. Statistical analysis of data obtained from 498 households showed that educational intervention significantly improved residents' knowledge of environmental health and disease, particularly in general health knowledge and behavioral modifications to achieve healthier lifestyles. These findings show that culturally appropriate educational intervention enhanced environmental health literacy among Cameron Park Colonia residents. We advocate for the implementation of culturally sensitive training programs in environmental health in other communities to continue to improve environmental health literacy among Hispanics in the United States and to facilitate creation of self-sustainable models of environmental justice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)32-37
Number of pages6
JournalEnvironmental Justice
Volume5
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2012
Externally publishedYes

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Health Literacy
health education
Environmental Health
literacy
Mexico
Health Education
health promotion
health
community
community health worker
health and disease
general health
environmental justice
Education
training program
Statistical Data Interpretation
lifestyle
Social Justice
train
Vulnerable Populations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

Cite this

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abstract = "The positive outcomes derived from the implementation of culturally sensitive educational programs in addressing disparities in environmental literacy and health among disadvantaged communities have not been rigorously examined. This report summarizes the results of a community-wide survey completed to test this hypothesis in the Cameron Park Colonia, one of the poorest communities along the Texas-Mexico border. The assessment followed a two-year training program in environmental health provided by community lay health workers using a train-the-trainer approach. Statistical analysis of data obtained from 498 households showed that educational intervention significantly improved residents' knowledge of environmental health and disease, particularly in general health knowledge and behavioral modifications to achieve healthier lifestyles. These findings show that culturally appropriate educational intervention enhanced environmental health literacy among Cameron Park Colonia residents. We advocate for the implementation of culturally sensitive training programs in environmental health in other communities to continue to improve environmental health literacy among Hispanics in the United States and to facilitate creation of self-sustainable models of environmental justice.",
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