Promotion of healthly lifestyles is essential to ensuring the medical care of communities. The course will consider how to conduct advocacy research, provide education and encouragement, conduct action campaigns and how to use the church to effect change. This will be explored by considering local cultural and societal influences and determining how best to conduct outreach.
Students will need to have training in research methods and critical appraisal of peer-reviewed scientific literature. An interest in determining how to promote health in community settings and local policies would be beneficial.
The course will facilitate students in leveraging positive relationships with their community to engage in and benefit from health opportunities.
The bible teaches that defending the rights of the poor is part of the process of coming to know God (Jeremiah 22 v16). Through the course we will explore poverty and other societal and cultural influences that affect health looking at ways to advocate change.
Ministering through public health outreach activities can enable missional students to approach the community with practical interventions that can improve health and enabling opportunities for ministry.
How do people feel about their health? Will the proposed intervention divide communities? What political forces are in play? All of these questions will be explored in the context of advocating change to improve health and wellbeing.
Cultural practices can influence health choices. Understanding what communities want and need is at the heart of determining effective strategies for change. What works in one setting may not in another. Students will spend time discussing how intercultrual differences may impact on health advocacy and outreach.
The course will enable students to appraise published scientific evidence, explore local influences on health and evaluate the most appropriate strategies to promote health.
Students will be tasked with designing a public health intervention to improve health in their community. This will equip students with identifiying community health needs, appraising the literature for effective communication strategies, considering acceptability of the intervention in addition to the associated costs and resources.