Implementing health promotion activities using community-engaged approaches in Asian American faith-based organizations in New York City and New Jersey
Faith-based organizations (FBOs) (e.g., churches, mosques, and gurdwaras) can play a vital role in health promotion. The Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health for Asian Americans (REACH FAR) Project is implementing a multi-level and evidence-based health promotion and hypertension (HTN) control program in faith-based organizations serving Asian American (AA) communities (Bangladeshi, Filipino, Korean, Asian Indian) across multiple denominations (Christian, Muslim, and Sikh) in New York/New Jersey (NY/NJ). This paper presents baseline results and describes the cultural adaptation and implementation process of the REACH FAR program across diverse FBOs and religious denominations serving AA subgroups. Working with 12 FBOs, informed by implementation research and guided by a cultural adaptation framework and community-engaged approaches, REACH FAR strategies included (1) implementing healthy food policies for communal meals and (2) delivering a culturally-linguistically adapted HTN management coaching program. Using the Ecological Validity Model (EVM), the program was culturally adapted across congregation and faith settings. Baseline measures include (i) Congregant surveys assessing social norms and diet (n = 946), (ii) HTN participant program surveys (n = 725), (iii) FBO environmental strategy checklists (n = 13), and (iv) community partner in-depth interviews assessing project feasibility (n = 5). We describe the adaptation process and baseline assessments of FBOs. In year 1, we reached 3790 (nutritional strategies) and 725 (HTN program) via AA FBO sites. Most AA FBOs lack nutrition policies and present prime opportunities for evidence-based multi-level interventions. REACH FAR presents a promising health promotion implementation program that may result in significant community reach.
Kwon SC, Patel S, Choy C, et al. Implementing health promotion activities using community-engaged approaches in Asian American faith-based organizations in New York City and New Jersey. Translational behavioral medicine. 2017.