Building Stronger Communities
The Building Stronger Communities program operates in Wilmington and Lawndale, CA. The program originated with input of local Wilmington residents who formed part of First 5 LA’s Best Start partnership. This group identified social isolation as a significant factor that impacts health, especially among families with children aged 0-5.
As part of Building Stronger Communities, Providence works with residents, local organizations, and educational consultants to improve access to social services for families, enhance capacity and connections of community members, and reduce social isolation. This is achieved with the following engagement activities:
- Leadership Capacity Building Program: We work with community partners to identify and strengthen the capacity of community residents, train them in leadership, advocacy, and wellness topics, and provide filed experience via placement in local outreach, classes, activities, and events with the goal to support socially isolated parents of children age 0-5. The 30-hour trainings are led by Providence staff and numerous other partners who provide additional trainings in specialized topics (e.g. grief support, mental health first aid, etc.).
- Community events: At the end of the leadership training, the newly trained Community Leaders plan and implement an event in their neighborhood. These events are intended to attract other local residents who may be socially isolated, to build social connections and friendships between residents. Community leaders have planned and organized events such as a Health & Wellness resource fair where they invited local organizations to provide tools and information about services offered in the community. Other events include family days at the park, a resident-led talent show, multi-cultural events, family game nights, and holiday community celebrations.