Community Health Worker Training Pilot Is Underway with Extension Professionals in the College of Health and Human Sciences
Thursday, October 1, 2020
A partnership between the Kansas Community Health Worker, CHW, Coalition and K-State Research and Extension, KSRE, professionals in the College of Health and Human Sciences is resulting in an education pilot for community health workers in Kansas and the region. Throughout August, Elizabeth Kiss, Elaine Johannes, Sandy Procter, Lisa Ross, Tandy Rundus, and Erin Yelland, joined practicing community health workers to complete 30 hours of coursework in adult education, CHW core competencies and social and economic determinants of health content. The training-of-trainers course was supported by KDHE, the United Methodist Health Ministry Fund and KSRE's Kansas Health Foundation endowment. As a result, beginning the week of September 28 the Extension professionals will join CHWs in providing 160 hours of training to students to become community health workers. Sixty hours of the online training is reserved for a culminating, applied experience in clinics, human service agents, Extension offices and health coalitions across the state.
The partnership with KSRE provides a unique statewide network of educators to compliment the CHW profession. Extension's expertise in issues important to Kansas CHWs, such as health, agriculture and food systems, community development, human development and much more are assets to the partnership. Most importantly, KSRE professionals have access to every corner of Kansas. Partnering with KSRE allows the CHW education course to be sustainable and more accessible to CHWs who live in rural and frontier parts of Kansas. According to Alissa Rankin, coordinator of the Kansas Community Health Worker Coalition and Project Manager for the Community Engagement Institute at Wichita State University, "Education is an exciting next step in sustaining and developing the CHW profession in Kansas! Stay tuned as we learn from this pilot, the exciting partnership with Extension and our efforts to expand access to health care across the state."