Statewide Health Improvement Partnership (SHIP)
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Community Leadership Teams Report
Statewide Health Improvement Partnership (SHIP) Evaluation Study
A unique feature of the Statewide Health Improvement Partnership (SHIP) is the emphasis SHIP places on local leadership through community engagement. Community input at the local level is both a critical component of SHIP's philosophy and a statutory requirement of SHIP's implementation. All community health boards receiving a SHIP grant convene a Community Leadership Team (CLT) to inform the development and implementation of SHIP activities in their region, which allows for local tailoring to the needs of the community and prioritization of those needs. CLTs are a structured way of engaging community members in SHIP and form the backbone of SHIP's community engagement strategy. Tribal SHIP grantees use different community engagement strategies specific to their culture and context.
In 2016-2017, MDH evaluated the structure and processes of CLTs to:
- Describe how CLTs contribute to building community leadership for health, reflecting the intention of SHIP in the state statute
- Identity which populations and sectors are and are not represented among CLT membership, to assess the extent to which CLTs can be a tool for advancing health equity
- Characterize the health and functioning of CLTs, for the purpose of identifying the types of support and technical assistance that would be most helpful.
Findings from this evaluation indicate that CLTs are active, engaged groups that benefit SHIP and the participating organizations. CLTs serve as a communications and networking forum, work to coordinate and align activities across organizations working in the same community to fill gaps and avoid duplication, and leverage connections and resources between organizations to enhance their work. The vast majority of CLT members believe they have the potential to have a moderate or major impact on the health of the community.