The Emory Prevention Research Center (EPRC) conducts and disseminates research on major chronic disease risk factors such as physical activity, nutrition, obesity and tobacco use for the purpose of preventing cancer and reducing health disparities in rural Southwest Georgia. The EPRC's primary partner is the Southwest Georgia Cancer Coalition (SWGCC), which has defined a 33-county rural region as its service area. The EPRC has adopted these same boundaries to define its partner community. African Americans comprise a large proportion of the SW Georgia region's population, and the region is considerably poorer than the state as a whole. Due to the rural nature of the region and its demographic characteristics, the burden of chronic disease and associated risk factors is disproportionately high. An active and engaged Community Advisory Board (CAB) provides ongoing community guidance into planning and implementation of research and other activities, in the spirit of community-based participatory research. The current proposal builds upon the EPRC's success to date through six inter-related goals or aims. The EPRC will: maintain and strengthen the EPRC infrastructure to support and sustain chronic disease prevention at Emory and in rural communities across Georgia;cultivate and strengthen partnerships with communities, public health agencies, and academic units and organizations to promote community-based participatory approaches to preventing cancer and reducing health disparities;and disseminate research findings and evidence-based chronic disease prevention practices to SW Georgia residents, and the scientific and professional communities. The EPRC will also increase the capacity of SW Georgia community partners to design, implement and evaluate evidence-based health promotion programs through training, technical assistance and mentoring;implement a five-year evaluation plan to assess and improve EPRC progress and outcomes using performance indicators and supplemental evaluation studies;and implement a 5-year collaborative research agenda to test and disseminate multi-level environmental strategies to make rural home and neighborhood environments more supportive of physical activity and healthy eating patterns.
The Emory Prevention Research Center works in the spirit of community-based participatory research to conduct research, training, evaluation, and communication and dissemination activities to address health disparities in cancer and other chronic diseases in rural Southwest Georgia. Through EPRC efforts, this disadvantaged region is strengthening its capacity for local cancer prevention and control.
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