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SEA Currents December 9th, 2021
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Taking Science to the Streets: Community Science and Participatory Approaches to Improve Environment, Health, and Quality of Life in Urban Areas

Posted by on February 11th, 2021 Posted in: Citizen Science, Continuing Education

Please join NNLM SEA for the webinar, Taking Science to the Streets: Community Science and Participatory Approaches to Improve Environment, Health, and Quality of Life in Urban Areas. 

Date & Time: March 3, 2021, 1:00PM EST

Description: Environmental justice communities are those which are disproportionately affected by and exposed to multiple environmental, socioeconomic and cultural stressors that may heighten their health risks in comparison to other communities. The availability of fine-grained, community-level data is limited to support appeals from these communities for public health practice, planning, and policy changes.

This presentation will describe local community-driven research, advocacy, and public health practice in an environmentally degraded urban community, Northwest Atlanta’s Proctor Creek Watershed. Community residents (watershed researchers), academics, and non-profit organizations leverage local, community knowledge; community science methods; and participatory approaches to identify, document, and analyze the impacts of local environmental hazards and quality of life stressors.

This highly collaborative and interdisciplinary work has helped to improve municipal services and community-municipality collaboration. It has also demonstrated that the democratization of science can help fill critical data gaps about local conditions and pollution sources, advance environmental justice, and impact changes in the implementation of urban policies and practice that influence community health.

By the end of this webinar, participants will be able to:

  • Define community science
  • Apply a conceptual framework for urban health to urban environmental health challenges
  • Identify a range of community engaged and participatory research approaches; and
  • Articulate how these approaches can be used to improve environmental quality, health, and community engagement in research and public health practice.

About the Speaker: Dr. Na’Taki Osborne Jelks is an Assistant Professor in the Environmental and Health Sciences Program at Spelman College in Atlanta, GA.  Dr. Jelks investigates urban environmental health disparities; the role that place, race, and social factors play in influencing health; cumulative risk assessment; the impact of climate change on vulnerable populations, and the connection between urban watersheds, pollution, the built environment, and health.  She also develops, implements, and evaluates community-based initiatives that set the conditions that are conducive for low-income and communities of color to empower themselves to reduce exposure to environmental health hazards and improve health and quality of life. Dr. Jelks is particularly interested in approaches that engage vulnerable communities in community-driven citizen science/community science activities to monitor local environmental conditions, reduce existence of and exposure to environmental hazards, and develop effective community-based interventions that revitalize toxic, degraded spaces into healthy places.

Registration: You may register in advance for this webinar at https://umaryland.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_0GPEJgImQ6ynGzcH4vXwtw

For questions, please contact April Wright at adwright@hshsl.umaryland.edu.

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