Promotoras - Community Health Equity Champions
Re:Vision uses a resident-led approach by employing local residents as promotoras who are trained in all aspects of urban agriculture and healthy living, providing them with technical skills and knowledge that they share with their community. Each promotora is paired with a number of families that she/he visits on a weekly basis, and through these visits, strong relationships are cultivated as they weave together a community of support and security.
Promotoras utilize a network organizing framework to engage residents, establish various entry points for participation, and establish a common vision to motivate residents to take action. In a sense, it is a pay-it-forward model – the individual transformation and inspiration begins with the promotora and then ripples throughout the community.
On an economic level, Re:Vision's promotora model creates good paying and well-respected jobs in the community. More importantly, the model empowers individuals to transform their own lives and those of their neighbors through Re:Vision’s leadership development and training programs.
Community Health Workers (Promotoras de Salud)
In August 2015, Re:Vision Promotoras expanded their work as community garden and nutrition educators to now include education in health as Community Health Workers (CHW). CHW's, or Promotoras de Salud, are trusted community members who can help their neighbors navigate the complicated health system and reach the resources they need in their native language, in their culture, and on a personalized timeframe. As the Re:Vision Promotoras have been working as backyard garden trainers and nutrition leaders for several years, this new expansion is a natural next step towards holistic health in Westwood lead by local leaders.
History of the Promotora Model
Community health workers can be found in every nation and culture. The promotora model has been used extensively in Latin America, and has recently (1950s) been applied in the United States to bridge gaps between people and resources in rural and underserved communities. From personal to environmental health, they are advocates for change and work to create thriving, resilient communities for their families and neighbors.