Step 10: Celebrate and Share Successes
Toolkit for Community Organizers:
Steps for Addressing Chlamydia in Your Community
- Share your work with your community and with MCP.
- Celebrate your successes. Consider the lessons learned.
- Sustain by collaborating with individuals and organizations that have expressed the greatest interest and are most involved. Determine the next steps for the coalition.
Kandiyohi County & CHAS
The importance of relationships within the community. It is absolutely essential to have taken the time to form relationships within the community. This helps you to know your community and allows for roads where otherwise you could not travel. Allow for time to build relationships and trust. If you truly want the community represented, than all views have value. While the Coalition may have been ready to move forward full pace ahead, the community is not at the same place. Expect there will be resistance and hesitancy to come involved. Back up to the place they all can agree and start there; that is your foundation; that is your circle of work. (1)
- Sexual health is very personal across gender, race and socio cultural backgrounds. The lack of positive language in our culture to talk about sexual health is apparent when working with groups about the issue.
- The shame associated with having an STD runs very deep. While working with ACL one student said, “I’d rather be shot than have AIDS.” The depth of this personal mortification needs to be acknowledged, because if we do not address this and recognize it as real, we cannot help our youth to move past it to get screened and treated. The emotional and relational impact of this infection is larger than we wish to acknowledge.
- The importance of framing sexual health as normal development cannot be understated. Within this context, people begin to be more comfortable talking about it. Focusing on disease either makes people uncomfortable, angry or judgemental. Framing the issue within adolescent development is positive; we can all relate to that since we were all young at one time. It helps to diminish the judgement, because young people make mistakes; after all that is part of being young and learning.
(1) MDH Grant to Kandiyohi County Public Health/CHAS (2014). Demonstration Project to Implement MN Chlamydia Strategy.
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