Foundations for Community Health Workers
August 2009, ©2009, Jossey-Bass
Foundations for Community Health Workers
Foundations for Community Health Workers is a training resource for client- and community-centered public health
practitioners, with an emphasis on promoting health equality. Based on City College of San Francisco's CHW Certificate
Program, it begins with an overview of the historic and political context informing the practice of community health
workers. The second section of the book addresses core competencies for working with individual clients, such as
behavior change counseling and case management, and practitioner development topics such as ethics, stress management, and conflict resolution. The book's final section covers skills for practice at the group and community levels, such as
conducting health outreach and facilitating community organizing and advocacy.
Praise for Foundations for Community Health Workers
"This book is the first of its kind: a manual of core competencies and curricula for training community health workers.
Covering topics from health inequalities to patient-centered counseling, this book is a tremendous resource for both
scholars of and practitioners in the field of community-based medicine. It also marks a great step forward in any setting,
rich or poor, in which it is imperative to reduce health disparities and promote genuine health and well-being."
Paul E. Farmer, MD., PhD, Maude and Lillian Presley Professor of Social Medicine in the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School; founding director, Partners In Health.
"This book is based on the contributions of experienced CHWs and advocates of the field. I am confident that it will serve as an inspiration for many CHW training programs."
Yvonne Lacey, CHW, former coordinator, Black Infant Health Program, City of Berkeley Health Department; former chair, CHW Special Interest Group for the APHA.
"This book masterfully integrates the knowledge, skills, and abilities required of a CHW through storytelling and real life case examples. This simple and elegant approach brings to life the intricacies of the work and espouses the spirit of the role that is so critical to eliminating disparitiesa true model educational approach to emulate."
Gayle Tang, MSN, RN., director, National Linguistic and Cultural Programs, National Diversity, Kaiser Permanente
"Finally, we have a competency-based textbook for community health worker educationwell informed by seasoned CHWs themselves as well as expert contributors."
Donald E. Proulx, CHW National Education Collaborative, University of Arizona
Part 1 The Changing World of the Community Health Worker.
1 The Role of CHWs (Darouny Somsanith).
2 The Evolution of the CHW Field in the United States: The Shoulders We Stand On (E. Lee Rosenthal).
3 An Introduction to Public Health (Tim Berthold, Sharon Turner).
4 Promoting Health Equality (Tim Berthold).
5 An Introduction to Globalization and Health (Tim Berthold, Sharon Turner, Alma Avila-Esparza, Mickey Ellinger).
6 An Introduction to Health Care and Health Policy in the United States (Len Finocchio, Ellen Wu).
7 Practicing Cultural Humility (Abby M. Rincón).
Part 2 CHW Skills and Core Competencies Working with Clients.
8 Guiding Principles for Working with Individual Clients (Tim Berthold, Edith Guillén-Nuñez).
9 Conducting Initial Client Interviews (Tim Berthold, Mickey Ellinger).
10 Client-Centered Counseling for Behavior Change (Tim Berthold, Darouny Somsanith).
11 Case Management (Tim Berthold, Craig Wenzl).
12 Home Visiting (Craig Wenzl, Tim Berthold).
13 Conflict Resolution Skills (Darlene Weide, Tim Berthold, Joani Marinoff).
14 Stress Management and Self-Care (Tim Berthold, Joani Marinoff, Sal Núñez).
15 Professional Skills: Getting a Job, Keeping a Job, and Growing on the Job (Amber Straus, Rhonella C. Owens, Jeni Miller).
Part 3 CHW Skills and Core Competencies Working in Your Community.
16 Working to Promote Health at the Community Level (Jeni Miller, Alma Avila-Esparza, Tim Berthold).
17 Community Diagnosis (Susana Hennessey-Lavery, Mele Lau-Smith, Alma Avila-Esparza, Jill Tregor, Tim Berthold).
18 Health Outreach (Craig Wenzl, Tim Berthold).
19 Facilitating Community Health Education Trainings (Jill Tregor).
20 Group Facilitation (Philip Colgan o Tim Berthold, Joani Marinoff).
21 Using the Arts to Promote Community Health (Tim Berthold).
22 Community Organizing and Advocacy (Alma Avila-Esparza).
Tim Berthold is chair of the City College of San Francisco Health Education Department.
Jeni Miller is publications director at the Public Health Institute in Oakland, California.
Alma Avila-Esparza is coordinator of the CHW Certificate Program, City College of San Francisco.