Last week, one of MHP Salud's co-founders celebrated her 100th birthday. This coincides with MHP Salud's 35th year of service. Read more about the history of our organization and the story behind the amazing woman who founded it.
Patria Alguila started working as a Community Health Worker in 2011. In 2014, she joined MHP Salud as a Program Coordinator. Now, as MHP Salud's training director, she helps other organizations start or strengthen their own Community Health Worker Programs.
MHP Salud has expanded its programmatic offering in Florida with the addition of the Infórmate (“Inform Yourself”) program in Central Florida. The program has brought on four young women to serve as Peer Advocates within the Latino community where they live, learn and socialize.
At a doctor’s appointment, Catarino Velazco got some frightening news. In addition to a diabetes diagnosis, Catarino’s doctor told him his blood sugar had risen dangerously high. In a translated interview, Catarino admitted his first response was shock.
“When they told me that my blood sugar had spiked,” he said, “I thought ‘How did that happen? It couldn’t happen to me, right?’” His doctor prescribed him some medication to control his blood sugar and recommended that he start attending Salud y Vida (Health and Life) classes led by MHP Salud.
MHP Salud’s history is characterized by cycles of empowerment. Three people foundational to enacting these cycles were Sisters of Mercy Mary Maurita Sengelaub and Judith Mouch and former migrant farmworker Genoveva Martinez. From modest beginnings, they ignited thirty-three years of health programming, spanning the entire country to aide not only farmworkers in the Midwest, but underserved Latinos coast-to-coast.
Program Director Anne Lee had the opportunity to interview the U.S. Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera about his experiences growing up as the child of agricultural workers with minimal health resources and how those early experiences informed his art today.
MHP Salud's new Program Coordinator, Patria Alguila's career path has followed a similar growth trajectory. She has risen through the ranks as a volunteer health counselor, a CHW, a CHW supervisor, a trainer of CHWs and their supervisors, and now she serves as Co-Chair of the Florida CHW Coalition where she's advocating for CHWs at the state level.
Over his two years in Zambia, Brad ran health education programs about HIV and malaria prevention and family planning services. In his free time, he coached for an after-school soccer program. In his new role at MHP Salud, Brad took his experience running health programs in resource-limited areas to analyzing the efficiency of health programing in the United States on MHP Salud's new Community Health Worker (CHW) Return-on-Investment (ROI) project.
MHP Salud Community Manager Elaine Ezekiel had the chance to sit down with Carl Rush, MRP, Research Affiliate for the Project on Community Health Worker Policy and Practice, a part of the University of Texas Institute for Health Policy. As one of the preeminent thought leaders in the CHW field, he shared his opinions about the relevancy of CHWs in the changing health landscape, the need for well-trained supervisors, and his vision for the future of the profession.